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The Horse Whisperer
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Reviews & Ratings for
The Horse Whisperer More at IMDbPro »

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Great movie. Great entertainment.

Author: Iceman-15 from United States
26 August 2003

I must have seen this movie at least five times, and somehow I never tire of seeing it even though it's not really my kind of movie.

I won't go into plot, and things like that, I'll just say it's exquisitely shot, beautifully acted by all with young Scarlett Johannson being a standout. But of course, Robert Redford deserves special mention for this is not only one of his best directed films, but also he gave himself one of his better roles. He's very good here. There's a close-up on him at the end of this film that has to be seen to be believed. Everything his character is feeling at that moment is revealed perfectly on his face. It's one of those moments that happen every once in a while. One of those moments that make you glad there is a thing called film.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

A very touching movie

7/10
Author: fanofkim from Ontario, Canada
14 June 1999

I liked this movie very much. A girl and her horse are both seriously injured in an accident. The girls friend died in the accident. With time and love, the girl and her horse eventually are healed, physically and emotionally. It is a good family movie.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Wonderful

7/10
Author: anonymous
12 June 1999

Robert Redford has no trouble with playing an aging cowboy named Tom. He pulls off the quiet, but sturdy cowboy image with perfection. Kristin Scott Thomas portrays Annie Maclean, a woman whose daughter's horse has been injured in an accident. The same accident caused her daughter, Grace, portrayed by Scarlett Johansson, to lose one of her legs. She goes to Tom to get help for the "out of control" horse. Sam Neill plays her husband, and appears to be an afterthought. For animals lovers, this movie has a disturbing beginning. The movie is about relationships, daughter to mother; child to horse; husband to wife; man to horse. The scenery in this movie is breath taking, and Redford took full use of it while directing the movie.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Slow but moving

7/10
Author: Martin Virgo from Epsom, Surrey, UK
8 May 1999

Yes, I agree the film is slow and, perhaps, overlong. Yes, there appears little in common between the methods presented in the film and documented 'horse whispering'.

However this film needed to show the passage of time, which is, after all, the greatest healer. I found the film to be moving.

I was interested in a comment that there was no 'motivation' for the disfunctionality in the family unit. As one who has witnessed many divorces I feel that I can safely say that in real life these forces can be subtle enough to elude the participants; let alone an audience.

I was greatly relieved that the trite ending I envisaged didn't occur.

Overall if you want a gently paced but powerfully emotive film then it is to be recommended; a liking of horses helps greatly!!

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

great inspiring movie!

8/10
Author: my_cat_chardissimo from Australia
8 December 2007

this movie helped me tons when i fell off, i was 13 and fell off and snapped my arm completely in half. except the methods to train Pilgrim at the end were horrible cruel, a true horse whisperer would never do that, thats old fashioned breaking in. not on. and he acted like a predator. that would freak out a horse. horse movie makers need to GET THEIR FACTS RIGHT!!! the bit at the end where she gets back on though, that was beautiful. inspired me to get back on even though i was terrified, still remembering my own horrible accident. THIS MOVIE ROCKS!!! this movie helped me tons when i fell off, i was 13 and fell off and snapped my arm completely in half. except the methods to train Pilgrim at the end were horrible cruel, a true horse whisperer would never do that, thats old fashioned breaking in. not on. and he acted like a predator. that would freak out a horse. horse movie makers need to GET THEIR FACTS RIGHT!!! the bit at the end where she gets back on though, that was beautiful. inspired me to get back on even though i was terrified, still remembering my own horrible accident. THIS MOVIE ROCKS!!!

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

absolute class

Author: jennpye8 from United States
9 February 2006

as always ,anything Robert Redford does is pure class.i really enjoyed this movie.the acting ,superb.there is nothing worse than seeing a movie with what i call,over dramatic actors.unfortunately,there are many of them around.the horse whisperer,really left me thinking about the whole story,you feel as though you are part of it.i have seen it 26 times and still enjoy every minute of it.i must confess,i do not really have a favourite movie,actor,actress or type of movie.I'm inclined to rate all that i do see on a scale of one to ten.i would give this one a rating of 9.i do admire the fact there was no nudity or full sex scenes.i don't think the latter is really necessary.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Richardson Cinematography

8/10
Author: Fabio Pirovano (fabiopirovano@hotmail.it) from CIGLIANO (VC) ITALY, PIEDMONT
18 July 2003

I loved Redford on BRUBAKER like actor... I love how Redford directing this film using in a smart way an intense Thomas Newman's score and a great Robert Richardson's Cinematography,according me one of best cinematographer on Hollywood Industry with Elliot Davis;Dante Spinotti and Dean Cundey. That not mean only "Greetings from Montana",his lights and shots are melt and useful for catch and keep the strong emotions and feelings of this story...story about the destiny and the faith...story that seems lack in any parts but at the end this film worth be watch without using FastForward button...

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

One of the best. Deserves its ten.

10/10
Author: jeromec-2 from Canada
13 January 2008

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I wonder how many people have actually been in Montana for any length of time? It is a beautiful state, full of opposites, contrasts, and subtle colors. Everyone who has ever been there knows that Montana has windstorms that are like hurricanes that last for three days. There are snowstorms that isolate rural families for what seems an eternity. Then there is summer sunshine that lasts for hours and hours with heat that would make sidewalks feel like walking on coals even with shoes on, which says nothing about rainstorms that can bring down trees.

Living on such land produces flexible, self reliant, open-minded, leather hard sunburned, understanding people. Such a man was Tom Brooker and the rest of the Brooker family. The seasons brought each of them whatever rewards and challenges only a place like Montana could bring.

Other reviewers have not given the complete descriptions of the wonderful choice of possible settings. Nor should they. Redford's great direction picked an ideal time of the year to tell an idealized love story. Spring with all its glorious almost iridescent greens and promise of so much growth was what he choose.

Kristin Scott-Thomas (who played Annie) and her daughter (Grace played by the always touching and sensitive Scarlett Johannson) travel from New York after an accident which cost Grace her leg and Pilgrim (her horse) his sanity. It was a miracle that either survived. From sophistication to a practical simple reality was what this film was about.

People who watch this film fall for the most part into two categories: those who like the unlikely love story, those who do not. There are those who like the scenery to speak for itself, and others who wish things would move on, that Redford would actually DO something.

Personally I liked the Horse Whisperer. I'm willing to accept all the criticisms as just that. They do not shake my basic belief that this was a well-crafted artistic endeavor telling a beautifully complex story where three living beings (two people and a horse) were cured of ills both obvious and hidden. They were rehabilitated not by medications, or health spas, or special diets, or leisure or anything else that was out of the ordinary.

They were cured by fresh air, hard work, good fellowship, and kindness and understanding, the virtues offered by the people of Montana. It is a great film to watch devoid of either obvious sex or violence. My vote is 10/10.

At the risk of adding a spoiler, many people on the board despised the ending. I did not. Annie merely found it difficult to say goodbye. She wanted to stay, but she could not leave Grace yet. She simply sent him away so that she herself could leave. Hers was an act of great and touching sacrifice. What she wanted could never replace her responsibility to her family. Unlike his first wife, who could not stand the open dullness of Montana and would never return, Annie did not want to leave. She had to meet higher obligations than her own needs. The door was always open for her return, and Tom knew this and so like the vast prairie of Montana, he could be enduring and patient.

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5 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

A Beautiful and Enjoyable Moralist Movie

9/10
Author: Claudio Carvalho from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
25 June 2003

The Horse Whisperer in indeed a very beautiful movie, with wonderful landscapes in Montana and supported by a magnificent first class cast. Although a little bit long and moralist film, it has a perfect timing, the viewer does not get bored and the situation is credible. The plot is based on a teenager girl who suffers an awful accident with her horse and her best girlfriend. After this accident, the girl loses one leg and her spirit, and her horse becomes wild and violent. Her well prepared and career devoted mother Annie (Kristin Scott Thomas), an editor of a magazine, decides not to sacrifice her daughter's horse, and tries to heal it, using the expertise of Tom (Robert Redford), a horse trainer. She leaves her husband (Sam Neil) in New York for a period, and moves to Montana with her daughter, towing a trailer with the injured horse. There, in Tom's ranch, not only the horse, but other wounds in the breast of her family will be healed. However, Tom and Annie will fall in love for each other, but the end of the romance will be too much moralist for the present days. Looks like the moral principles in those movies in the 40's and 50's. But perfectly credible! The movie has a great and long continuity mistake. Tom and Annie are riding horses and from the upper shots, Annie is wearing hat. In the closes, inserted between the upper shots, she does not have any hat . In the end of their ride, the hat appears on her shoulder. The accident scene, in the beginning of the movie, has too much cuts. Maybe an induced accident (like in Mary Lambert's 'Pet Sematary' ) would be more appropriate. But these last comments and remarks do not affect the quality of this enjoyable movie. My vote is nine.

Title (Brazil): "O Encantador de Cavalos" ("The Horse Whisperer")

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Great Visuals, story suffers a bit though....

5/10
Author: jimsboatworks from United States
17 November 2015

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This is a pretty good story, a bit too slow at times. The scenery is what makes this film tolerable, sometimes enjoyable. Some of the equestrian practices shown are not depicting correct or safe methods, but this is normal in films. Horses don't flip out like people in the first place. They may be scared of places, sounds and things where the trauma occurs, but would never become psychotic as shown here.

The other troubling thing I kept seeing over and over in the film is Scarlet Johansson's character kept trying to do things with her prosthetic instead of her good leg. I myself had a slow healing broken ankle and spent 9 months on a cast. You learn to use your good leg quickly, like when trying to climb a corral fence and mounting a horse from the side of your good leg, not your bad. These little film maker faux pas and the acting by Kristin Scott Thomas (trying too hard, obvious fake smiles- how hard is it to smile?) kept this from being an excellent movie.

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