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Whatever its weaknesses, contemporary parents who want a nontoxic Western to show their children could hardly find better than “Spirit Untamed.” It takes the idea at the end of genre master John Ford’s “The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance” (“This is the West, sir. When the legend becomes fact, print the legend”) and virtually rides off in its own, counter-mythic direction with it.
New Orleans Times-Picayune
Audiences won’t likely find it Pixar-profound, but it’s not direct-to-DVD forgettable, either — or “My-Little-Pony”-cloying. Plus, it’s got horses. And, if you’re younger than 13, that counts for something.
Though it’s nominally liberated from its TV backstory, Spirit Untamed could still have benefited from a little more freedom.
Fans of the original film will still find something beautiful underneath, and “Riding Free” acolytes will likely delight in seeing a splashier take on a story they already love. Everyone else, however, might wonder when they can hope to be set free from this story, just like Spirit.
Spirit Untamed is beautiful to look at and occasionally genuinely funny. The stunning and detailed animations saturate Lucky’s world with an impressive array of colors, from the crimson apples she feeds Spirit to the pistachio and emerald-green leaves on the swaying trees.
Despite the predictable plot, there are moments of genuine delight – and they all come from the fresh talent.
A girl-and-her-horse adventure that never really hits its stride, Spirit Untamed offers undemanding family entertainment alongside some easily digestible life lessons.
Spirit Untamed is inoffensive, which both makes it far more tolerable than most other DreamWorks Animation titles and also not terribly good in and of itself.
Spirit Untamed has vivid moments of beauty, but loses its gallop with a facetious storyline about identity as it keeps trying to define itself as an “empowering” film for little girls, missing the mark on both fronts.
Very little of Spirit Untamed lives up to what the studio is selling.

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