Frabjous Times

The 'biscuit runs again.

Summary: A generally well-done "old-fashioned" sort of movie, just right as summer fare. It was a little slow and ponderous getting going, leaving the audience a little impatient to get to the big payoff scenes — the close-ups of the races. If this movie grosses over $100 M, I predict that someone will successfully pitch the story of Secretariat in the next couple of years, perhaps with the (surprisingly good) Gary Stevens playing the part of Ron Turcotte.
The filmmakers clearly recognize that one of the most thrilling things to see in all of sport is one racehorse running past a throng of other racehorses as if they are standing still.
Tobey Maguire is the American Elijah Wood, in his general looks, his acting fortes, and in his seeming lack of Hollywood self-absorption. The profile of him in last week's NY Times Magazine (see the site for a reprint sans pictures) was reassuring to this cynic.
The American Humane Association has a page on the treatment of animals in this film which mentions that 40 horses were used, with ten playing Seabiscuit's part.
Originally published: 2003/07/27 19:29:02