movie film review | chris tookey
 
     
     
 

Young Black Stallion

 (PG)
© Disney - all rights reserved
     
  Young Black Stallion Review
Tookey's Rating
4 /10
 
Average Rating
4.60 /10
 
Starring
Richard Romanus, Patrick Elvas, Gerard Rudolf
Full Cast >
 

Directed by: Simon Wincer
Written by: Jeanne Rosenberg

 
 
 
Released: 2003
   
Genre: DRAMA
SPORTS
ADVENTURE
FOREIGN
PREQUEL
ACTION
   
Origin: US
   
Colour: C
   
Length: 45
 
 


 
A belated prequel to The Black Stallion, a children’s classic made 25 years ago. But this is no masterpiece - just a run-of-the-mill girl-meets-horse, girl-loves-horse, girl-races-horse story - and it owes more to National Velvet than any other movie. With its exceptionally short running time (45 minutes), there is no time for character development or complex dramatic conflict.
Reviewed by Chris Tookey

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The scenery is spectacular and the cinematography stunning, but the huge Imax screen magnifies everything, including the self-consciousness of the younger actors and continuity errors (look closely and you can see that different horses play the leading role, and not all are totally black).

The film can be recommended to very young children (especially girls who are mad about horses, which means an awful lot of them). It makes a change to see a young Arab heroine; and young Biana Tamimi rides well and acts with a fresh-faced joyousness that compensates for her awkwardness with dialogue.

However, the film’s view of Islamic culture vis-a-vis women is so Disneyfied that the whole thing feels sugar-coated. It lacks the relative sophistication of Whale Rider, which made a more convincing attempt to get inside the skin of its young heroine and understand her culture.

Stallion is watchable – but an opportunity has been missed to make this a must-see for anyone whose age has achieved double digits.


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