Who doesn't love a good movie? A good movie can make you cry, laugh, fall in love, and cheer throughout the hour plus it's taken you to watch it.
Who doesn't love a good horse? A good horse can make you cry, laugh, fall in love, and cheer through the years that you spend time with your horse.
So combining the two together should cause a ripple in the universe so big and awe inspiring that it puts screaming, fainting, adoring, Justin Beiber fans to shame.
Wrong. Most horse movies suck. They are either so cheesy or corny that you either enjoy them a little or feel like you've wasted the past hour of your life that you know you can't get back. Every so often Hollywood does make a great horse movie, but compared to the thousands of bad ones out there, the great ones could probably be counted on two hands.
Most recently Secretariat has put my faith back into movie making using the horse as a primary character, and hopefully War Horse will continue to trick me into thinking Hollywood might have figured out a "Horse Movie". But it's going to be a long road before I completely forgive them for making such movies as Dreamer and Flicka (the remake- not original)- just to name a few.
I use to watch every horse movie I could as a little kid. Walking through Blockbuster (because those were the days before Netflixs and Redbox) I would stop if I saw a horse on the cover of the tape and take it home to watch. Plus my mom, also being a rider herself, owned a few of the classic "greats" on VHS, and we would also go to the movie theater and watch any horse movie that made it into theaters. Vault Disney was one of my favorite series because they played some of the old horse movies made in the 60's and 70's by Disney. These movies tended to fit into the category of cheesy love, but never-the-less they were enjoyable.
So with that being said I have divided up horse movies into 4 basic categories.
1st category is: Classic Epic Horse Movies
These are the movies that will be around forever and your children's children will still be talking about these movies- they will stay forever
2nd category is: Classic Cheesy Awesomeness
These movies will stay around forever, some may not always be well known, but should never be forgotten- they are still classics. The movies from the 40's- 80's are usually the ones to fall in this category- but not always.
3rd Category is: So bad that you're glad/wish you didn't see it in Theaters
After all movie tickets are expensive! Even though you wasted a little bit of your time watching these movies, you're still glad you saw it but will probably never see again. These are the movies that might stick around for a while, most likely not forever, but are geared towards the small girl or boy that dreams of getting a real pony for Christmas or their birthday.
4th Category is: Why did I just waste precious minutes watching the worst movie ever??
Unfortunately most of the horse movies tend to fall into this category. The director either tried to hard to make it and "Epic" movie and it failed miserably or the movie started out bad.
Now sometimes movies in the 3rd and 4th categories can be switched between the two categories, because lets face it- we all have different tastes in movies, but in general they still suck.
Movies in Category 1
The Black Stallion- come on- classic Walter Farley? Moments of cheese, but the beach scene- who didn't wish they could be Alec riding the Black on the island???
Black Beauty- classic book becomes classic movie- bring your hanky for the end!
Wild Hearts Can't Be Broken- this one could fit in Category 2, but I think the ending makes it into a Category 1 movie
The Man From Snowy River- the hill- or should i say cliff??? Sexy Aussie accents, awesome horse, great music, what's not to love and make this into a Classic?
Seabiscuit- newer movie, that was nominated for Oscars. Oscars= instant classic!
Secretariat- This movie easily could of become a Category 4 movie, but the director and actors did right by this movie and made it into a Category 1 film. Thank goodness because Secretariat should be known and remembered for his greatness, not a crap movie named after him
And Lastly (for now- I'm coming up with movies off the top of my head so I might have forgotten some!)...
National Velvet- Now I couldn't decide if this movie should be put into Category 1 or 2. It fits the profile of Category 2, but if you ask someone to name a classic horse movie this will be the 1st one that comes to mind. It is the oldest and has famous actors and actresses in it that the general public know. Therefore there's a good chance that non horse people know something about this movie! (since I'm not a non horse person I can't say this with 100% accuracy since I only talk to horse people ;) hehe j/k) Elizabeth Taylor, Angelia Lansbury, and Micky Rooney??? Everyone should know them!!! Plus this is probably the most well known and loved horse movie, so how could I not put this into Category 1???? In truthfulness, this movie should have a category of it's own- the Classics of Classics- and anyone that wants to argue this can take it up with my lawyer- though I'll warn you he's very hard to get a hold of so keep calling if you really want to complain!
This post is getting long, and I should save some topics for others posts, so I'm ending here, but don't worry- more horse films are on their way!!!