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The Horse Whisperer (1998)

PG-13  |   |  Drama, Romance, Western  |  15 May 1998 (USA)
6.5
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 30,277 users   Metascore: 65/100
Reviews: 263 user | 92 critic | 19 from Metacritic.com

The mother of a severely traumatized daughter enlists the aid of a unique horse trainer to help the girl's equally injured horse.

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(novel) (as Nicholas Evans) , (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Title: The Horse Whisperer (1998)

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 4 wins & 18 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Diane Booker
...
...
Frank Booker
...
Liz Hammond
Ty Hillman ...
Joe Booker
...
Judith (as Catherine Bosworth)
Austin Schwarz ...
Twin #1
Dustin Schwarz ...
Twin #2
...
Grandma Ellen Booker
Steve Frye ...
Hank
Don Edwards ...
Smokey
...
Lucy, Annie's Assistant
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Storyline

A teenage girl riding a horse is hit by a truck. To help heal her troubled/injured daughter, and horse, the mother takes them to Montana to recuperate at the ranch of a 'horse whisperer', a horse healer of mystical talents. The mother proceeds to fall in love with him, as well. Written by Dan <fpdj@intergate.bc.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance | Western

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for a disturbing accident scene | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

15 May 1998 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El señor de los caballos  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$60,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$13,685,488 (USA) (15 May 1998)

Gross:

£5,448,177 (UK) (9 October 1998)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| |

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Listed in the closing credits as 'equine technical advisor' is a man named Buck Brannaman. He's the subject of a 2011 documentary titled Buck (2011) which relates his own troubled past and how he became a 'horse whisperer'. In the Redford movie, there's a picture of Buck and his brother Smokie Brannaman in the montage of old family photos during a scene at the Booker home. It's the one with two young boys with Santa Claus; Buck is the boy on the left. See more »

Goofs

Gulliver's protective bandaging changes from red to white (when he rears up). The bandages disappear when he breaks his ankle and slides down the bank but are present in the next shot. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Judith: [waves] Hello!
Grace: [waves] Hello!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Ebert Presents: At the Movies: Episode #1.22 (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Whoops Ty Yy Yo
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User Reviews

 
The Horse Whisperer is an exquisite work........a gift
18 September 2005 | by (India) – See all my reviews

Last night I was blessed with an experience that is the gift of cinema

  • a very very beautiful film that celebrates the glory of the human


soul in a way that drove me to tears of joy and gratitude at having had the privilege of being a part of it.

The Horse Whisperer is an exquisite work, with multiple levels of relevance that are marvelously integrated into a seamless story. On one level, it is a celebration of man's great capacity for and heritage of attunement to nature and the limitless beauty that he chooses to return to, having tired of the unsatisfying world that he had created in its place on his path of discovery. It is also a testimony to the process of healing, of how it is an opportunity to delve deep into the recesses of the traumatised soul, and how it can only be undertaken with a simultaneous caring for everyone involved in the circle of influence. It is also an examination of relationships, of the relationship between the parent and the child, between man and woman, between human and animal, and ultimately between body and soul. Ultimately the film is a triumph of spirit, a paean to a long forgotten wholeness and harmony that is celebrated in the film as though it just were, and had never ceased to be, without the wrangling and flailing that one has come to expect of a piece of art that attempts to recapture the glory of the soul.

One of the very many great moments of the film are where the mother tries to understand the Horse Whisperer's failed relationship with his love in the past, as a love that was 'wrong' because they were not 'right' for each other. He says 'I loved her not because it was right, I just loved her'. This clear differentiation between love on the one hand and the rightness of the relationship on the other elevates both to a respectability that is incomprehensible when love is understood only as a manifestation of the rightness of a relationship. This kind of 'simple wisdom', so to speak, is the fabric of the entire film, it is the tongue in which the story is told. In fact much of the film eschews dialogue completely in favour of the vast visuals of American ranch-land, always with humans embedded as part of the landscape in a harmony that seems so obvious as to be almost unremarkable. Among the most poignant of these are the moments between Tom, the Horse Whisperer and Pilgrim, the horse, moments where they communicate wordlessly, often soundlessly, slowly going through the stages of distrust, caution, diffidence, examination, trust and sharing that are necessary on the path of friendship, here shown between man and animal.

The story of the Horse Whisperer is simple enough and I shall neither describe it, nor analyse the components of the film. Doing this would reduce its stature to that of a product.

The Horse Whisperer is a gift, accept it.


41 of 59 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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New York to Montana with a horse in a trailer ritzay
is it normal for young people to be out riding like the beginning? beavertoof
The Dance Scene! jackmanbaby
A sequel? doubledutch
Heartbreaking... redwal241
Robert Redford is a great actor! jhammersmith7
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