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The Horse Whisperer
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The Horse Whisperer More at IMDbPro »

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

needs to be about the kid

5/10
Author: SnoopyStyle
23 August 2014

Annie MacLean (Kristin Scott Thomas) is a bossy editor at a magazine and facing accusation of misconduct in her job. Her daughter Grace (Scarlett Johansson) goes riding her horse Pilgrim with her friend Judith (Kate Bosworth). An accident leaves them run over by a truck. Judith is killed while Grace loses a leg and Pilgrim suffers traumatic injuries. Annie is stubborn and dismayed at Grace's depression. She tracks down Montana rancher Tom Booker (Robert Redford) or the Horse Whisperer to help. She drags Grace and Pilgrim to Montana despite her husband Robert (Sam Neill), Grace and Tom's objection. She surprises Tom at his range where he lives with his brother Frank (Chris Cooper), Frank's wife Diane (Dianne Wiest) and family.

It's a very interesting start. It's a nice family drama for almost an hour. There is a lot of good family relation dysfunction set up. Then they get to Montana and Redford slows everything down. I don't ride and the horse whispering doesn't appeal to me. There is some beautiful slow whispering but the mother takes away too much of the focus. The mother's development goes into an unnecessary place. It only takes the story away from the daughter. The family dysfunction is still good but it just devolves into something less compelling. It spends too much time on unnecessary and distracting issues.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Thought Provoking

8/10
Author: leothemack from United Kingdom
8 December 2013

Maybe it's just me being sentimental about another film accompanied by a Thomas Newman soundtrack, but I thought this motion picture was outstanding. The aforementioned score by the great Tom Newman was the perfect accompaniment for this chilling, yet heartwarming tale; just one of the 11 injustices by the academy.

I'm not familiar with most of Redford's work, and I was yet to be convinced by his acting; however, he played the role of Tom so fantastically, that's it's just one of those roles you know the actor was born to play. A couple of drawbacks were that I felt Scarlett Johansson's acting at times a little dry, albeit she was only 13 at the time.

Cinematoraphy was excellent, most notably the scenes of rural Montana, as well as the opening and final scenes of Pilgrim (the horse) prancing around - unrelated to the plot.

All in all, I would definitely recommend a watch. Solid 8/10.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

It Improves In Its Source Material

9/10
Author: Desertman84 from United States
15 October 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The Horse Whisperer is a film directed by and starring Robert Redford,who plays the title role as a Montana rancher named Tom Booker,a talented trainer with a remarkable gift for understanding horses and that is hired to help an injured teenager and her horse to go back to health following a tragic accident.Kristin Scott Thomas,Sam Neill,Dianne Wiest and Scarlett Johansson co-star in the film to play key supporting roles.The screenplay was written by Eric Roth and Richard LaGravenese,which is based on the novel of the same title by Nicholas Evans.

Fourteen-year-old Grace MacLean and her friend Judith go horseback riding in upstate New York on a winter morning, but their horses lose their footing on ice and slide onto a road, where Judith and her horse are killed by a jackknifing truck. Grace and her horse are also seriously injured as doctors must amputate Grace's right leg and the frightening incident leaves a lasting trauma not only on Grace but also on her horse, Pilgrim. Grace's mother and magazine editor, Annie MacLean is seeking Grace's recovery.She feels there's a link between her crippled, embittered daughter and Pilgrim's behavior. Learning about a horse trainer with a special gift, she takes Grace and Pilgrim to Montana where horse whisperer Tom Booker lives on a ranch with his younger brother Frank, Frank's wife Diane and their children. Tom's work with the horse also has a rejuvenating effect on the guilt-ridden Grace. Annie loses her magazine job, and the low-key romantic involvement between Annie and Tom develops during the summer, stifled by the unexpected arrival of Annie's husband, Robert MacLean.

Directing himself for the first time, Redford has lavished his usual meticulous care on popular material that comes alive on the screen in ways that it never could on the page.The viewer may find this to be have similarities with The Bridges of Madison County but his directorial approach offers the kind of graceful stature, tenderness, and intelligence required to elevate the simple story. The film takes all the time it needs to let its characters heal and make their important decisions, and that alone makes it a refreshing alternative to the frantic pace of most big-studio movies.Also,it maintains a spiritual atmosphere and decent hold on personal problems, keeping the long journey to the cure compelling.And most of all,the movie improves in its source material despite of being old-fashioned and somewhat melodramatic.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

The Horse Whisperer is an uncommonly graceful film with luxuriant landscapes, subtle performances, and human decency and warmth.

Author: Virginia Aiello Ording from Pacific Grove, California
11 February 2003

The Horse Whisperer is an uncommonly graceful and subtle film, which will not appeal to those who favor hyper-heroes, deafening decibels, and seven-second scenes. Set primarily in the vastlands of Montana, the cinematography, editing, and direction create an unparallelled aesthetic, which is colored by a warm, bonded family whose members intend meaning in making their cattle ranch a working home. Verdant meadows, glistening streams, and the chiarascuro of sunrise and sunset luxuriate in the eye of the beholder.

Onto to this serene landscape ride the mother, Annie; the daughter, Grace; and the horse, Pilgrim; all three are deeply wounded. The healer wears a denim shirt, a weathered face, and a history that has taught him to give "No" for an answer. His name is Tom Booker and he treats not people with horse problems but "horses with people problems." Annie, Grace, and Pilgrim learn that this horse whisperer means for all creatures to fulfill their purpose. He includes himself in this stricture and will not brook interference even from the self-important New York editor who has driven two-thousand miles to urge him to heal his equine client.

A well-structured script adapted by the brilliant screenwriter Richard LaGravenese and directed by star Robert Redford give the film a luxuriant pace in which to linger at a roundup barbecue or on a mountain ridge. Kristin Scott Thomas embues her character with a wide emotional range, and Scarlett Johansson as her disspirited daughter actualizes her role movingly. Robert Redford, Sam Neill, and Chris Cooper admirably portray decent men with examined lives. Diane Wiest and Ty Hillman are delightful as family members whose generous spirits shine on their loving faces.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Fine Effort: Why you will like this movie.

Author: ad-16 from US
24 March 2002

Putting a book to a movie, especially a literary work, is an impossible task to do with true parity. What the creators have done for us is to give us a visual sense of place with beautiful pictures and a long list of conflicts to help mitigate the merciless demands of the movie medium to clip at a pace in physical form compared to the more psychic realm of writing.

For those emotionally mature, the film presents many metaphors for the unfairness and draconian sensibilities of the emotions. On the other hand, the philistine-loving high-action dramas with sensationalized artificialities will find this film to be quite boring and too long.

When presented with such astute observations and warnings of the human heart, we must somehow suspend our natural criticism when we see the Rockwellian choice of costume and iconic cotton-top naturalists, for the cliché must have a purpose. The cliché provides the visual effect of communicating what probably was so easy to write in the book, that of the mind looking back through the lenses of its feelings; for, when we experience emotional pain and longing, when we recall lost loves, we see the time and place through that love. When we see the two twin boys in the back of the truck, throwing out hay, it is from the angle of an angel looking down upon the two blonde headed, happy, boys wearing matching bright red and clean cowboy shirts. When we see the horse whisperer's buckskin gloves, they are none the worse for wear after working hard on the ranch. Gloves, hands, rope, and fences are among some of the visuals reverberating the thematic elements of the film.

There is plenty to watch, and every moment we get to see more of the beautiful landscape.

The most surprising non-event is that many feminists did not deride the film for its implications that strong-willed women subdue to the strong and gentle, manipulative touch of a man whose own understanding of how to direct the emotions of a horse translates well enough to a woman, teetering on the edge of filial impiety.

Thanks go to those who created this movie for giving us a film of maturity, compassion, and beauty.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Enjoyable family movie

8/10
Author: icd10 from Fairfax, Virginia
6 August 1999

Enjoyable family film. Nice photography of the horses. My kids enjoyed it. My 12 year old thought the movie was very well done as far as how the teens/children were portrayed. I would recommend it to anyone who has a child with a crush on horses.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Very well made, great shots, good acting

Author: Martijn Toning (m.toning@cable.a2000.nl) from Netherlands
1 June 1999

I never saw The Horse Whisperer in the theater. I bought it on DVD (region2) when it was released, only after reading reviews and hearing people talking about it. I must say I liked it. This is really a fine movie. It is made with real craftsmanship. Like with Quiz Show, Robert Redford is very good at creating the right tempo in a movie, using beautiful shots, nice music and very good editing together with the acting. The Horse Whisperer is worth watching. It's not a tear jerker, it's not about cheap emotions.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

This film, like the book, goes astray

Author: Croc from London, England
16 March 1999

This film is deeply flawed the same way the book was. I read the book first and was very excited by the first couple of chapters. Everything was fine until the author decided to introduce the love story element. Instead of being a deeply moving story of redemption and healing, it got swamped by this schlocky, pappy and very unbelievable love story.

I don't know if the author got swayed by the fact that Robert Redford was interested in the film rights when the author was half-way thru and decided to make a good old Hollywood romance. Well if he did it was a shame because this could have been one of the truly great stories this decade.

The only plus points of this film were the acting and the stunning Montana scenery.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

very good 'sentiment****'

Author: Vanessa Groenewegen from netherlands
3 November 1998

Well, in Holland we call movies like this a 'draak' which means:dragon. Very sentimental ****. I happen to like sentimental ****. To make good sentimental **** is more difficult tham it may seem. Robert Redford did a perfect job. The chemistry between Kristen and him didn`t work so well, but the mother-daugther relationship was of a quality I don`t see so often. It was true to life and gripping, of course I cried a lot. It got me thinking about my life. So, thank you Rob, most films I forget the minute I walk out of the cinema.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Real good film

10/10
Author: Corinna Bee from United Kingdom
26 February 2014

one of the best films for me, I watch it each time with the same enthusiasm as the last and each time I see something new. Amazing. For various personal reasons I love this film. The acting from all, the story itself, the fact that Tom Booker doesn't quite engage on the telephone to the Annie, I thought he was rather shallow ie we are in Montana and I am not interested in anywhere else. Annie's sole commitment to healing the horse, whatever it takes, her pain and patience, the latter sometimes diminishing due to emotions. Scarlet excellent from beginning to end, the pain of her friend tragically dying, her horse being ill and near to death. I like Robert's ways, but prefer Tom. I watch this film at least once a month.

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