Best ever horse related film?

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Just thought of another big favourite: 'Crin-Blanc' or 'White Mane', a fairly corny story about a poor young fisher-boy in the Camargue who befriends a wild white stallion. Never mind the corny storyline, though, the photography is fantastic. It won the short film prize at the Cannes festival in 1953.

Be aware, though, that there are some tough scenes, notably a long fight between two stallions which can't have been mocked-up: they are really fighting and I think the film-makers would have a job to get away with it now. A beautiful film for all that. The whole 38 minute film is on YouTube. Watch it and see the Camargue without being eaten alive by mosquitoes.
 

littleshetland

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I digress slightly, but when I find myself watching western films (i.e. cowboys and injuns) especially old ones, I find myself wincing and almost unable to watch those poor old horses being galloped at breakneck speed across rocky terrain, and then hitting the ground with a sickening thud when they're 'shot', and don't even get me started on the yanking hands connected to those long curb bits..... luckily, it seems animals in the film world seem to have a much more sympathetic time of it these days, but those old westerns.....oooh 'shudder'!
 
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I digress slightly, but when I find myself watching western films (i.e. cowboys and injuns) especially old ones, I find myself wincing and almost unable to watch those poor old horses being galloped at breakneck speed across rocky terrain, and then hitting the ground with a sickening thud when they're 'shot', and don't even get me started on the yanking hands connected to those long curb bits..... luckily, it seems animals in the film world seem to have a much more sympathetic time of it these days, but those old westerns.....oooh 'shudder'!
You're right to shudder, littleshetland: the chariot race in 'Ben Hur' allegedly accounted for 100 horse fatalities. An early version of 'Charge of the Light Brigade' supposedly up to twice as many. When those films were made it was apparently cheaper to shoot an injured horse rather than treat it. Eventually the US government stepped in to regulate the treatment of animals in the film industry, but how many suffered and died before then?

See this link below for the gruesome details: http://www.cracked.com/article_19548_the-5-most-horrifyingly-wasteful-film-shoots_p2.html

I've known a couple of horses who did film work. One, a physically and mentally robust item and ex-Warwickshire hunt horse called Jasper, was an extra in a remake of Black Beauty. He disgraced himself by taking a dislike to one of the Black Beauties (there were several) and kicking him/her. Jasper never worked again, dahlings.
 

fburton

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I really don't enjoy the far fetched and un-plausible films with lots of fake neighing, like BB and Warhorse.
As far as I can tell, almost all horse films have fake neighing. Why do they do it?? Don't they realize that horsey people can instantly tell this is bogus? More likely they know but don't care and are simply pandering to a lowest common denominator of non-horsey audience. It's very depressing. :frown3:
 

amandap

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As far as I can tell, almost all horse films have fake neighing. Why do they do it?? Don't they realize that horsey people can instantly tell this is bogus? More likely they know but don't care and are simply pandering to a lowest common denominator of non-horsey audience. It's very depressing. :frown3:
Yes it is and annoying! Just feeds into the myths about horses.
 

Skib

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I bought the DVD from Amazon (The Colt) and, because it had a US region code, played it on my computer. Not sure how else to watch it... sorry. (Just checked iTunes - not available there.)
Thank you for that info. I didnt know one could play USA DVDs on one's computer. OH and I did manage to buy a download of Ken Burns' The National Parks TV series from Apple and watch that. But we have quite a list of films only on USA Region DVDs we would like to watch so I will look into this. Edited to say that on our computer one can switch the Region but one is limited to the number of changes one can make!

As for cruelty to horses in Westerns, I may be too innocent. OH and I liked the horses in The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada - Tommy Lee Jones who is a horseman, I think -
 
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fburton

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One has to be a bit careful with computer DVD players as most of them will accept different regions but only allow you to change regions a limited number of times (usually 5) before becoming "locked" to one region or another. So what I do is keep the built-in DVD drive as Region 2 (which includes UK & Europe), and use an external, portable DVD player for Region 1 (North America). The whole region protection thing is a pain, but this is one easy work-around.

Actually, I now have a region-free DVD player so can use that to play anything.
 

PolarSkye

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I digress slightly, but when I find myself watching western films (i.e. cowboys and injuns) especially old ones, I find myself wincing and almost unable to watch those poor old horses being galloped at breakneck speed across rocky terrain, and then hitting the ground with a sickening thud when they're 'shot', and don't even get me started on the yanking hands connected to those long curb bits..... luckily, it seems animals in the film world seem to have a much more sympathetic time of it these days, but those old westerns.....oooh 'shudder'!
Yup - me too.

P
 

PolarSkye

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As far as I can tell, almost all horse films have fake neighing. Why do they do it?? Don't they realize that horsey people can instantly tell this is bogus? More likely they know but don't care and are simply pandering to a lowest common denominator of non-horsey audience. It's very depressing. :frown3:
I think it's because non-horsey people find horses a little uncommunicative (because they don't know otherwise) so editors/directors over-egg the pudding (so to speak). It IS annoying, but I remember thinking something similar years ago - that horses just aren't THAT vocal . . . and then I bought Kal . . . and he is! Honestly, he is the chattiest, most vocal horse I have ever met.

P
 

PolarSkye

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As for favourite horse-related films . . . I'm another fan of Dreamer, and Secretariat. I do love Seabiscuit, but the book is better and I read it before I saw the film so the film annoys me a little. War Horse leaves me cold I'm afraid and I don't know why.

P
 

hoggedmane

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Escape from the dark - about pit ponies. I watched it several times when it came out when I was about 8 (Dad ran the cinema) and cried my eyes out every time. It didn't really have a happy ending either.

I also love Champions.
 

Carlosmum

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Champions.... It was the first film I went to see with my boyfriend ( now husband of 28 years). I watch the G. National every year to hear the theme music
 

Jules19

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Carlosmum, think you'll find that music is Ennio Morricone, from The Mission, should you wish to listen to it more than once a year. ;)
 

marmalade76

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I think it's because non-horsey people find horses a little uncommunicative (because they don't know otherwise) so editors/directors over-egg the pudding (so to speak). It IS annoying, but I remember thinking something similar years ago - that horses just aren't THAT vocal . . . and then I bought Kal . . . and he is! Honestly, he is the chattiest, most vocal horse I have ever met.

P
Totally agree that some horses can be quite 'chatty', but these films often use noises that sound nothing like I've heard any horse make, or use their sounds in completely the wrong context. The more recent the film, the worse it is.
 

kandor

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Seabiscuit.
War Horse I thought was a bit soppy, but the worst one I saw was some old picture involving a couple of Palominos and Russell Crowe :)
 

Pebble101

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Has anyone ever seen 'The Horse in the Gray Flannel Suit'? - yes it is spelt gray as it's an American film. I saw it years ago as a child when it was the supporting movie to Bambi.

I got it recently and watched it - very corny :)

Another for International Velvet and My Friend Flicka. I have got Hildalgo to watch.
 

Donnie Darco

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Phar lap and The Black Stallion - I can watch time and time again.

Warhorse could have been fab, if they didn't keep changing the lead horse all the time.
 

lar

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Escape from the dark - about pit ponies. I watched it several times when it came out when I was about 8 (Dad ran the cinema) and cried my eyes out every time. It didn't really have a happy ending either.
Not seen the film but I remember reading the book at around the same age and weeping buckets
 

On the Hoof

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Well thanks to you lot have spent my evening watching seabiscuit on utube imstead of finishing a piece of work that I need to present tomorrow. Worth it though! :)

Now got to set my alarm for an hour earlier .....mmm wonder what Ill watch tomorrow..
 

suffolkmare

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"Escape from the Dark"

Ahh, I think that must be the film I vaguely recall from the 1970's, it was shown alongside the main feature which may have been Freaky Friday or One of our Dinosaurs is missing...;P
 
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