Top 10 horse movies to warm up your heart!
Written By: Martha Northwick
We have to face facts ~ the leaves have changed colors, the wind is blowing and despite our unseasonably warm weather WINTER IS COMING! So as our horses get furrier and we pull out our winter wear, it’s time to prepare for indoor activities! That means MOVIES!

With the release of Secretariat in the theaters ~ I thought I would compile my top ten best horse movies!

All top ten lists should start from number ten. So here goes:

10.   National Velvet
A jaded former jockey helps a young girl prepare a wild but gifted horse for England's Grand National Sweepstakes.*

If you love races and jumping, this is the movie for you! Elizabeth Taylor plays Velvet a girl who like most is horse crazy. After seeing a horse being mistreated she rescues him and decides to train him for the Grand National Steeple chase! In a time when women should be seen and not heard Velvet disguises herself as a jockey to help “The Pie” win! This movie will make you smile even hours after you’ve finished watching! A must for little girls!

9. Something to talk about
Grace (Julia Roberts) discovers that her husband Eddie (Dennis Quaid) is having an affair with another woman. To her surprise, she also discovers that people around her advice her to forgive and forget instead of making an issue out of it. Her father (Robert Duvall) owns a hunter/jumper horse farm and thinks that the whole family should instead concentrate on an upcoming competition.*

Although this movie isn’t only concerning horses they are essential to the plot. Grace deals with her husband’s infidelity and her father’s selfishness all while running a jumping stable and being a mother. Her daughter turns to horses to deal with her pain. Great movie for adults… Romantic comedy style!

8. Black Beauty
The fates of horses, and the people who own and command them, are revealed as Black Beauty narrates the circle of his life.*

Ok admit it, this one is a classic! The only story (I know of) told from “first horse” perspective is heart warming and heart breaking all at once. Following “Black Beauty” from his birth at a happy home through countless abusive owners is hard. But never fear Anna Sewell (being a horse lover herself) didn’t let us down! You must watch this movie once in your life!

7.  Phar Lap
The true story of an Australian racehorse that becomes a champion with the help of a local stable boy.*

Phar Lap, the legendary Australian racing horse, is as well-known today for his mysterious death as for his fabulous accomplishments in life. Beginning at the end, the film flashes back to the day that Phar Lap, despite his lack of pedigree, is purchased on impulse by trainer Harry Telford. Phar Lap loses his first races, but Telford's faith in the animal is unshakable. Suddenly the horse becomes a winner, thanks to the love and diligence of stable boy Tommy Woodcock. Although history tells us the end of this story it’s worth a watch!

6. Dreamer
Ben Crane believes that a severely injured racehorse deserves another chance. He and his daughter Cale adopt the horse (in fact is a mare) and save it of being sacrificed by the owner. The arrival of the mare to Crane's farm will be the perfect opportunity for both father and daughter to reconstruct their lost familiar bond. "Soñador" (Dreamer in English), the renamed mare, despite its broken leg, maybe could have another chance to return to the racecourse, with the help of Cale, Ben, and his father, Pop.*

A movie for the whole family Dreamer tugs at your heart strings. Will Cale and her father rehabilitate Dreamer? Will their farm and family be saved! I highly recommend this one. Its proof that horses heal can heal the heart.

5. Dark Horse
The plot focuses on new-girl-in-town Allison Mills, a teenager who recently lost her mother. When she hangs out with the wrong crowd, she gets into trouble and is sentenced to community service at a local stable. There she comes to love spending time with the animals until an automobile accident cripples her and her favorite horse Jet. The wheelchair-bound girl learns to overcome her handicap through the indomitable spirit of the steed, who overcomes the odds and runs again.*

I love this movie! Have you ever thought about what would happen if you could not ride any longer? This movie tackles that as well as what you might do if your horse is hurt too. Watch as Allison and Jet work together to overcome their obstacles. The story is based off of an Arabian that was used in the Black Stallion movie. After he broke his leg he spent over a year in a sling. Even though his walk was never perfect again, when they let him loose running was never a problem!

4. Hidalgo
Held yearly for centuries, the Ocean of Fire--a 3,000 mile survival race across the Arabian desert--was a challenge restricted to the finest Arabian horses ever bred, the purest and noblest lines, owned by the greatest royal families. In 1890, a wealthy sheik invited an American, Frank T. Hopkins, and his horse to enter the race for the first time. During the course of his career, Hopkins was a cowboy and dispatch rider for the U.S. cavalry--and had once been billed as the greatest rider the West had ever known. The Sheik puts his claim to the test, pitting the American cowboy and his mustang, Hidalgo, against the world's greatest Arabian horses and Bedouin riders--some of whom are determined to prevent a foreigner from finishing the race. For Frank, the Ocean of Fire becomes not only a matter of pride and honor, but a race for his very survival as he and his horse attempt the impossible.*

Ok I love this one for a number of reasons: 1. Hidalgo looks exactly like my friends horse RJ. 2. Paints rule… and even though I love all horses it’s cool to see one with a spirit like Hidalgo’s 3. Frank Hopkins (Viggo Mortensen) starts out as a drunk but remembers why he was called the greatest rider the west has ever know 4. The races scenes are amazing. So watch this movie!

3. Wild Hearts Can’t Be Broken
This is the story of Sonora Webster, a teenage runaway during the Depression. Her life's ambition is to travel to Atlantic City, where "all your dreams come true." After leaving home she accepts a job from Dr. Carver and his girl-and-horse high diving act.*

This is another “overcoming obstacles” flick. What makes this one great is that Sonora (Gabrielle Anwar) overcomes her obstacles with her trusted mount. After losing her sight in a horse diving accident (yes look it up… horse diving is real) she works with her horse Lightning to follow her dreams. This is a great love story; a girl loves her horse and finds her perfect man.

2. The Man from Snowy River
Jim Craig has lived his first 18 years in the mountains of Australia on his father's farm. The death of his father forces him to go to the low lands to earn enough money to get the farm back on its feet. Kirk Douglas plays two roles as twin brothers who haven't spoken for years, one of whom was Jim's father's best friend and the other of whom is the father of the girl he wants to marry. A 20 year old feud re-erupts, catching Jim and Jessica in the middle of it as Jim is accused of letting a prize stallion loose.*

What can I say about this movie? Set in Australia Jim Craig (Tom Burlinson) not only loses his father and has to work to save his farm he also gets entangled in a 20 year feud and falls in love with an untouchable woman. Mix that in with cool horses, awesome accents, and a soundtrack you can’t get out of your head and the best riding scene ever! It involves a hill and some great music… you’ll understand once you’ve seen it. You’ve got to see this one to believe it!

1. Seabiscuit
True story of the undersized Depression-era racehorse whose victories lifted not only the spirits of the team behind it but also those of their nation.*

A story about a race horse that was considered “too small” and a jockey that was “too big”. Seabiscuit is the stuff of legends. Cheer for the under dog as we watch Seabiscuit rise from being the butt of jokes around the barn to a champion beating War Admiral in a stakes race. This is a great movie! The racing scenes are awesome; I get goose bumps every time I watch as George Woolf holds his horse back for Red Pollard and Seabiscuit.  Go Seabiscuit go!

So get cozy, pop some popcorn and get ready for movie fun! What are your top ten horse movies? Send your list to and you could be published on!
*Movie synopsis provided by