Midnight Stallion - Buy from Amazon
Midnight Stallion is a film by Nasser Group North, which is a company that seems to specialize in family friendly films that earn the seal of approval from the Dove Foundation. Midnight Stallion is exactly one of those movies. Will it appeal to those looking for family friendly entertainment? Will it have wider appeal?
The film begins on Megan Shepard's birthday and her mother, Rita, and her father, Jack, give her a new cowboy hat. It makes sense, as they do live and work on a dairy farm. However, their farm is struggling and they are already three months behind on their mortgage and if they miss one more payment, the bank will foreclose. Rita thinks they should move to a more lucrative crop, while Jack wants to return to the family roots and become a horse ranch again.
While at church, they meet the Chaneys, Brad (David Orth); Belinda (April Telek); and their teenage son Ross (Matt Mazur). They are also farmers, but switched from dairy to soy years ago and are much better off financially and returned after buying the local bank. They are even sponsoring a horse race to bring some publicity to their sleepy little town. Of course, Jack likes their little town exactly as it is. He's a little old-fashioned that way. No, let me revise that. He's completely stubborn. He gets annoyed when Rita suggests they grow wheatgrass as a crop. He decides to go horseback riding to clear his head, but that's when he spots a wild black stallion running in a field near his ranch, and it's faster than the fastest horse he owns. He's smitten and determined to catch the stallion and enter it in Brad Chaney's big race. If he could enter the horse and win, he's be able to pay the back everything they owe.
Jack's plan is to use one of his mares that are in heat to draw in the stallion and trap it. Rita is worried that he's too old to tame a wild stallion and could get hurt, or killed. The first part of the plan works, but Megan gets trapped with the horse and while Rita and Jack protect Megan, the stallion breaks through the fence and gets away. Without the money for the race, there's little choice but to go with Rita's plan to sell the cattle, get a bridge loan, and start planting wheatgrass. If it works, they will be back in business. If it fails, they will not only lose the farm and the house, but their vehicles and furniture and everything.
While Rita and Jack are signing the loan papers, Megan is riding her horse and runs into the stallion again. This time, the meeting is much nicer and she's able to feed him a couple apples before he runs off. Slowly she's able to gain its trust. When she tells Jack, he's so excited that he wants to race off and try and catch him. However, he realizes he needs to help Rita plant the new crop. The next day, on the other hand, Jack and Megan head out at first light. He's not giving up on his dream to enter that horse in the big race. This dream becomes a necessity after a flash flood wipes out the wheatgrass and winning the race is their only way to save the ranch.
There's more to the plot than that. There's also a romance blossoming between Megan and Ross, which adds to the movie. On the other hand, the "Evil Banker" sub-plot comes across as a little too cartoonish. In fact, the "Evil Banker" sub-plot is the weakest part of the movie and unfortunately it does spill into the young romance sub-plot as well. Outside of that issue, Midnight Stallion is a sweet, but predictable family film. Jodelle Ferland is very good in the movie, and her scenes trying to bond with Midnight should please fans of these films. Kris Kristofferson looks more like her grandfather than her father, he knows how to play these roles.
There is an eight-minute long making of featurette.
Midnight Stallion is a good family film with very solid leads and only a couple missteps. There are not a lot of extras on the DVD, so unless you are a real fan of horse movies, then a rental will be enough.
- Submitted by: C.S.Strowbridge
Date posted: 2013-03-03