9 user 3 critic

Run Wild, Run Free (1969)

G | | Drama, Family | 28 March 1969 (UK)
Philip Ransome, a northern English boy about 10 years old, has been mute since age 3 and spends his days roaming the moors alone. His parents despair of a cure. One day he sees a singular ... See full summary »


(screenplay), (novel)




Complete credited cast:
Mr. Ransome
Mrs. Ransome


Philip Ransome, a northern English boy about 10 years old, has been mute since age 3 and spends his days roaming the moors alone. His parents despair of a cure. One day he sees a singular wild albino pony with blue eyes and befriends it avidly. A kindly retired colonel who accepts Philip as he is, a girl his age, and a pet falcon she gives him provide him with more things to love and care about. Gradually Philip emerges from his shell. But the way out is full of heartbreak and setbacks. Written by Paul Emmons <pemmons@wcupa.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

colonel | pony | girl | boy | mute | See All (100) »


Do You Believe in Love?


Drama | Family


G | See all certifications »




Release Date:

28 March 1969 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

The White Colt  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)


(Technicolor) (uncredited)
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Did You Know?


Opening credits: All characters and events in this film are fictitious. Any similarity to actual events, or persons living or dead, is purely coincidental. See more »


Philip Ransome: [speaking for the first time, to the pony that is stuck in a bog hole on the moor] Philip! Philip! Wake up. Don't die now. You've got to help yourself.
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Run Wild, Run Free
Music by David Whitaker
Lyric by Don Black
Sung by The New Christy Minstrels
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User Reviews

Clearly derivative, but loaded with the appropriate atmosphere
20 December 2015 | by See all my reviews

RUN WILD, RUN FREE is a clear entry in the 'love of nature' sub-genre of movies that came out during the late '60s; titles include BORN FREE and RING OF BRIGHT WATER. This one's heavily indebted to the latter as well as KES, telling of a young autistic boy growing up on Dartmoor who finds himself unable to communicate with the human race. Instead, he finds a love of animals and nature which gradually brings him out of his shell.

This was made shortly after the success of OLIVER! and saw Mark Lester's fame riding high. He's certainly a good choice for the role of the protagonist, but John Mills is even better in support, essaying the role of the kindly benefactor with skill and ease. Gordon Jackson and Sylvia Sims play Lester's exasperated parents and the former is particularly effective. Watch out for future Bond girl Fiona Fullerton as a kid, playing a girl who befriends Lester.

Inevitably, it's the creatures who end up being the most enjoyable characters in these productions, and the pony and the kestrel are undoubtedly the best things in the movie, lovable both of them. There aren't too many films set on Dartmoor and the cinematography brings out the best of the rugged locales, which I loved. There are the usual highs and lows, peaks of happiness and moments of tragedy, alongside one of the most gruelling climaxes I've seen in a film. It's well worth a watch if you're a fan of the genre.

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