This is the hill I will die on.

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Horse girls, gallop on over. We need to discuss a subject that is very near and dear to my heart.


The horse girl within me has been chomping at the bit for this one.

I’ve remained silent for a long time, but with DreamWorks planning to release Spirit Untamed later this summer, I can no longer hold my tongue.

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Why mess with perfection?

This is not something I say lightly. I’ve seen just about every horse movie ever made, from Racing Stripes to Seabiscuit, including some of the ones you probably didn’t know existed, like this:

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But shoutout to The Black Stallion and Flicka for runners up.



Let’s review the facts.

1. Spirit is a buckskin Mustang, meaning his coat is a tan/golden-ish color with a black mane and tail. This is unusual in horse movies, which often feature chestnuts, bays, and pitch black horses.

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Or white horses in medieval princess movies.

2. This movie is about so much more than just a horse. It’s about love, it’s about racism, it’s about oppression, it’s about freedom.

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Not to mention the strong will and determination of both Spirit and Little Creek.

3. The soundtrack. It’s incredible. Hans Zimmer always delivers, but Bryan Adams didn’t have to go as hard as he did.

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I’ll be dammed if “Reunion” doesn’t play at my wedding.

4. How many horse movies give us a love story between the HORSES? This one.

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What a handsome pair.

5. Matt Damon is Spirit.

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TBH, 8-year-old me actually didn’t know this at the time. But boy did this knowledge rock my world as an adult.

6. A POC is the main human protagonist.

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Can I get an “AYE-MEN.” No but seriously, it’s refreshing to see a POC as the lead human companion to the horse, rather than the young, white teen Hollywood usually features.

7. There’s so much history tied into the film.

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The movie takes place in Oregon during the American Indian Wars in the 1800s, and it touches on the expansion of the American railroad.

8. It’s a story of resilience and redemption.

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Throughout the film, the Colonel and other humans constantly try to “break” Spirit, but even when it seems all hope is lost, Spirit manages to push through, motivated by his love for his family.

9. That scene where he jumps across the canyon to freedom …chills.

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Once again, another symbolic representation of freeing oneself from the shackles of oppression for both man and horse.

10. This entire scene is a metaphor for triumph over the white man.

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The Colonel wrongfully assumes he has “broken” Spirit. But Spirit lifts his head up, remembers who TF he is, and slings the Colonel off of his back JUST as Little CreekCreek frees himself from his ropes. And you can’t tell me “Get Off My Back” isn’t a bop.

11. The whole movie teaches selflessness.

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At the end, Little Creek decides to release his beloved horse, Rain, into the wild to be with Spirit. It pains him to do so, but he does it anyway because it’s what’s best for her. That’s love.

12. Spirit and Little Creek are constantly saving each other.

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Little Creek saves Spirit from the Colonel, then Spirit saves Little Creek from drowning, then Little Creek saves Spirit from the plummeting train/fire, and Spirit leaps across the canyon with Little Creek on his back — saving them both.

It’s like a game of phone tag but with lives.

13. Baby Spirit should win his own award.

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Cutest colt in existence.

14. Rain’s loyal and equal relationship to Little Creek.

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She galloped all the way to his tent when she heard the settlers (colonists) approaching rather than trying to save herself.

15. And finally, when it ends with this iconic line.

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When a movie says the name of the movie in the movie>>>.

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