Three Great Films About Horses
The relationship between man and horse dates back to, approximately, 4000 BC, when the animals were first domesticated by humans. Historians and archeologists believe that horses were first domesticated in the Western Steppe, and the evidence for this belief seems to be rock solid.
Throughout the years, horses have accompanied us through times of peace, serving as transport or being used in agriculture, and through times of war, when they were used as transport or in battle. Today, the horse has been replaced in transport, farm work, and in war, however, the animal remains one of the few whom humans form powerful bonds with. While we often refer to the dog as man’s best friend, the humans have formed bonds just as strong and powerful with horses as they have with any pets.
Many of the people who understand the bond between man and horse, have immortalized said bond in media. In this article, we are going to look at some of the media, and discuss some of the best films made about horses.
Horse racing is one of the most popular sports in the world. Online betting sites like betstation.com report that horse racing is the second most popular sport to place bets on, topped only by football. Throughout the centuries that people have been horse racing, numerous horses have distinguished themselves as true greats, and one of the most popular ones is Seabuscuit.
This film, starring Tobey Maguire, Jeff Bridges and Elizabeth Banks, tells the story of Seabuscuit, the racing horse who won the hearts of people the world over, and the deep bond that the horse formed with his jockey, Red Pollard (Tobey Maguire). The film was directed by Gary Ross, and was met with both critical and box office success. It currently sits at 77% at the review aggregator site Rotten Tomatoes.
War Horse is another film about the bond between a boy and his horse. Directed by the legend, Steven Spielberg, War Horse tells the story of Albert, a young man who enlists to serve in the English Cavalry during World War I, in order to get back to his horse, who was sold to the military.
The film is based on the novel of the same name by Michael Morpurgo, and infused with the classic whimsy of Steven Spielberg is a fantastic film in its own right. The movie might not have been a huge box office success, by Spielberg standards, but it still made over 100 million dollars internationally, and up until recently, was the highest-grossing WWI film of all time.
Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron
In 2002, DreamWorks Animation produced Spirit, a film which was met with resounding success. The movie features the voices of Matt Damon and James Cromwell, and tells the tale of an untamable stallion, named Spirit, who is freed from captivity by a native American man.
Even 20 years later, this film is remembered by people who grew up watching it, and has spawned a number of spin-offs, including a Netflix show titled Spirit Riding Free.