Barnes & Noble - Ed HulseAn impeccably produced throwback to Hollywood's Golden Age (and one of the year's true sleepers), this superb drama is very much like its real-life equine inspiration: a little slow out of the gate but full of heart and great fun to watch. Based on Laura Hillenbrand’s runaway bestseller, this is the (mostly) true story of Seabiscuit, an undersized racehorse who became a symbol of triumph over adversity to Depression-weary Americans during the '30s and '40s. Owned by millionaire Charles Howard (Jeff Bridges), trained by former cowboy Tom Smith (Chris Cooper), and ridden primarily by emotionally damaged jockey Red Pollard (top-billed Tobey Maguire), Seabiscuit beat the odds time and again, becoming a champion even after being sidelined with a crippling injury, and ultimately making a fortune for his handlers. But this movie isn't just about the horse; it's about the three men who guided his destiny, men who weathered hardships and endured the loss of loved ones. Maguire is achingly vulnerable -- yet not always sympathetic -- as the half-blind jockey who never quite gets over being abandoned by his parents in the Depression's darkest days. Bridges, in his best performance in years, shines as the perpetually optimistic auto magnate who survives the death of his young son and the dissolution of his once-happy marriage to see both his business prosper and his racehorse become a phenomenon. Chris Cooper is nothing short of amazing as the grizzled old wrangler whose knowledge of horses is positively uncanny, and who laments the loss of his all-but-obsolete way of life. Writer-director Gary Ross limns these three characters in great detail, and the actors bring them to life beautifully. Carefully produced to be evocative of the period, Seabiscuit takes some liberties with the facts and tinkers with the chronology of actual events. But minor deviations from the historical record don't affect the fundamental truth that Seabiscuit was a remarkable horse who achieved fame in remarkable times, due to the efforts of remarkable people. Their joint success is no less inspiring today than it was more than a half century ago, and this movie is a loving tribute to that success.
All Movie GuideHollywood generally attempts to put its best foot forward on Oscar night. The academy traditionally selects as Best Picture a movie that people worked hard on and that will entertain the broadest possible audience. By that definition, Seabiscuit has all the elements of a nominee. Gary Ross has achieved greatness in practically all of the individual areas of production. The sets, the costumes, the lighting and the score have been lovingly crafted. The triumphant story of comebacks -- for a horse, for the characters, and for a country -- should appeal to anyone. The acting is top-notch. As star-crossed jockey Red Pollard, Tobey Maguire proves once again that he is arguably the best actor of his generation. There is a scene where he sees the horse again after both have been injured. He hobbles faster than he should to touch Seabiscuit and it is a fabulous piece of acting -- a perfect synthesis of physical movement, facial expression, and speech that makes the audience believe that this moment is happening to this character for the very first time. Chris Cooper is reliably wise and rugged as the mysterious trainer, and Jeff Bridges finds the perfect notes as both a gifted salesman and a grieving father. Even first time actor and respected jockey Gary Stevens manages to communicate a great deal about his character with very little screen time. While all of the excellent work in front of and behind the camera leads to some smashing entertainment, the film feels just slightly less than the sum of its parts. What it lacks is a sense of a personal stake from the filmmakers. They are making something from their heads and not their hearts, and while that does not diminish the achievement, it does make it something slightly less than art. Seabiscuit is old-fashioned Hollywood entertainment, in the best sense of the phrase. Perry Seibert
All Movie Guide - Perry SeibertHollywood generally attempts to put its best foot forward on Oscar night. The academy traditionally selects as Best Picture a movie that people worked hard on and that will entertain the broadest possible audience. By that definition, Seabiscuit has all the elements of a nominee. Gary Ross has achieved greatness in practically all of the individual areas of production. The sets, the costumes, the lighting and the score have been lovingly crafted. The triumphant story of comebacks -- for a horse, for the characters, and for a country -- should appeal to anyone. The acting is top-notch. As star-crossed jockey Red Pollard, Tobey Maguire proves once again that he is arguably the best actor of his generation. There is a scene where he sees the horse again after both have been injured. He hobbles faster than he should to touch Seabiscuit and it is a fabulous piece of acting -- a perfect synthesis of physical movement, facial expression, and speech that makes the audience believe that this moment is happening to this character for the very first time. Chris Cooper is reliably wise and rugged as the mysterious trainer, and Jeff Bridges finds the perfect notes as both a gifted salesman and a grieving father. Even first time actor and respected jockey Gary Stevens manages to communicate a great deal about his character with very little screen time. While all of the excellent work in front of and behind the camera leads to some smashing entertainment, the film feels just slightly less than the sum of its parts. What it lacks is a sense of a personal stake from the filmmakers. They are making something from their heads and not their hearts, and while that does not diminish the achievement, it does make it something slightly less than art. Seabiscuit is old-fashioned Hollywood entertainment, in the best sense of the phrase.
Chicago Sun-Times - Roger Ebert1/2
The movie's races are thrilling because they must be thrilling; there's no way for the movie to miss on those, but writer-director Gary Ross and his cinematographer, John Schwartzman, get amazingly close to the action.
New York PostA thrilling, beautifully crafted, fact-based horse story that's not merely the summer's finest movie, but may well be the one to catch come Academy Awards time. Lou Lumenick
- Release Date:
- Original Release:
- Universal Studios
Cast & Crew
|Tobey Maguire||Red Pollard|
|Jeff Bridges||Charles Howard|
|Chris Cooper||Tom Smith|
|Elizabeth Banks||Marcela Howard|
|Gary Stevens||George Woolf|
|William H. Macy||Tick Tock McGlaughlin|
|Eddie Jones||Samuel Riddle|
|Ed Lauter||Charles Strub|
|Michael O'Neill||Mr. Pollard|
|Michael Angarano||Young Red Pollard|
|Royce D. Applegate||Dutch Doogan|
|Annie Corley||Mrs. Pollard|
|Valerie Mahaffey||Annie Howard|
|Clif Alvey||Angry Trainer|
|Michelle Arthur||Marcela's Friend|
|Catherine M. Baeza||Female Mariachi Band|
|George Baker||Salvation Army Band|
|Mariah Bess||Pollard Child|
|Robin Bissell||Horace Halsteder|
|Samuel Bottoms||Mr. Blodget|
|Cameron Bowen||Pollard Child|
|Ben Campisi||Clocker Man|
|Dyllan Christopher||Frankie Howard|
|Jay Cohen||Bugle Player|
|Raul Cuellar||Male Mariachi Band|
|Dan Daily||Saratoga Trainer|
|Aerial Delarosa||Male Mariachi Band|
|David Doty||Land Broker|
|Shay Duffin||Sunny Fitzsimmons|
|James DuMont||Reporter Lewis|
|Gina A. Duran||Female Mariachi Band|
|Roger E. Fanter||Pimlico Night Watchman|
|Borden Flanagan||Farm Manager|
|Cynthia Reifler Flores||Female Mariachi Band|
|Maria Luisa Fregosa||Female Mariachi Band|
|Matthew Gillies||Salvation Army Band|
|Ruby Guiterrez||Female Mariachi Band|
|Gary A. Hecker||Horse|
|José García Hernández||Male Mariachi Band Leader|
|Eric Hernandez||Male Mariachi Band|
|Jesse Hernandez||Male Mariachi Band|
|Julio Hernandez||Male Mariachi Band|
|Pedro Hernandez||Male Mariachi Band|
|Sylvia N. Hinojosa||Female Mariachi Band|
|William Hollick||Bug Boy Jockey|
|Hans Howes||White Horse Trainer|
|Michael Hunter||Speed Dual Jockey|
|Peter Jason||Reporter Max|
|Javier Juarequi||Male Mariachi Band|
|James Keane||Car Customer|
|Paige King||Tick Tock's Squeeze|
|Anthony Klingman||Boxing Match Referee|
|Jacqui Larsson||Salvation Army Band|
|Noah Luke||Pollard Child|
|Ken Magee||California Doctor|
|Kevin Mangold||Saratoga Jockey|
|Tarri Markel||Female Mariachi Band|
|Daniel Martinez||Salvation Army Band|
|Chris McCarron||Charley Kurtsinger|
|Gary McGurk||Tractor Worker|
|Dennis Meade||Male Mariachi Band|
|Michael Ensign||Steamer Owner|
|Matt Miller||Pimlico Starter|
|Frank Mirahmadi||Santa Anita Track Announcer|
|Fernando Moreno||Male Mariachi Band|
|Mariana Nanez||Female Mariachi Band|
|Paul Vincent O'Connor||Bicycle Supervisor|
|Leticia Olmos||Female Mariachi Band|
|Laura Pena||Female Mariachi Band|
|Jose Ramirez||Male Mariachi Band|
|Jamie Lee Redmon||Pollard Child|
|Richard Reeves||Radio Reporter Joe|
|Joe Rocco||Bug Boy Jockey|
|Gary Ross||Pimlico Track Announcer|
|Gianni Russo||Alberto Gianini|
|Camilia Sanes||Molina Rojo Woman|
|Michael B. Silver||Baltimore Doctor|
|Pat Skipper||Seabiscuit's Vet|
|Joshua Stanley||Salvation Army Band|
|Danny Strong||Young Jockey|
|Karla Tovar||Female Mariachi Band|
|Tony Volu||Racing Tout|
|John Walcutt||Reporter Roy|
|Michael White||Salvation Army Band|
|Ivan Wild||Salvation Army Band|
|Gary Barber||Executive Producer|
|Anna Behlmer||Sound Mixer|
|Roger Birnbaum||Executive Producer|
|Robin Bissell||Executive Producer|
|Lynn Christopher||Set Decoration/Design|
|Cosmas Demetriou||Set Decoration/Design|
|Bill Durrell||Set Decoration/Design|
|William C. Goldenberg||Editor|
|Tobey Maguire||Executive Producer|
|Tod A. Maitland||Sound/Sound Designer|
|Judianna Makovsky||Costumes/Costume Designer|
|Andy Nelson||Sound Mixer|
|Andrew Neskoromny||Art Director|
|Randy Newman||Score Composer|
|Jeannine Oppewall||Production Designer|
|Leslie Pope||Set Decoration/Design|
|Bill Ryder||Set Decoration/Design|
|Adam Somner||Asst. Director|
|Allison Thomas||Executive Producer|
|Randall D. Wilkins||Set Decoration/Design|
|Laura Hillenbrand||Source Author|
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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based on 0 ratings. 31 reviews.
Seabuiscuit was an outstanding movie about an underdog horse that beats an outstanding horse against all odds. This movie will make you laugh, cry, and leave you in shock. I highly recommend this movie to anyone.
Engaging, deep, sensitive, brutal, uplifting!! Seabiscuit is a beautiful story of survival of three men and one beautiful animal. The Biscuit needs each man with their own individual strengths, and makes all three 'strong' again. Tobey is fantastic in the portral of Red, and I can't get enough of Chris Cooper!! Bridges is at his best, showing the very human side of 'BIG' business. Fabulous movie, fit for the entire family!
Everybody likes a success story, but this one goes way out of its way to make you sympathize with and root for the main characters. There's just something about it that's not quite right. Yes, the cinematography is very good and the movie is technically very well made, but the dialogue is extremely cheesy and the story tries to go in too many directions. The villians are almost cartoonish and the comic relief found in William H. Macy's character is more annoying than funny. The horse races are well shot and the horse probably gives the best performance in the movie as actors who generally turn in good performances are trapped in a bad screenplay. Overall, this is a good movie, but it is in no way worthy of its Oscar nomination.
This movie is so inspiring and heart warming. It is about a boy struggling with his life and a horse who is the same way. They meet and create a wonderful bond. They are both underestimated. The boy is blind in one eye and the horse is smaller than all the others. It gives you the courage to do anything you want to do and accomplish the impossible. They sure did!!!!!
Anyone who loves horses and racing will get a tug of the heart in this movie. Reality hits home how much every jockey puts his life on the line each race he mounts up for. Loved, loved it.
A very good story about a horse and man who no one thought would amount any thing and they surpassed all expectations.
This is the best family movie I have seen inyears. Its the kind of story that touches your heart, I cried off and on all through it. I rarely do that when I watch a movie. Acting was great and photogtraphy, and of course the story were great. I know it probably wont win an academy award because they never give the award to the great movies.
It was a great story, And stayed quite true to the book. Not for very young kids but a good story.
It's not just a story about horse racing or an unusually large jockey that becomes successful. It's about two creatures who have been met with some misfortune, that when they finally come together, their lives gain new meaning and their spirits connect and energize each other as they encounter a life of racing together. This movie speaks more to the connection in spirit and love of animals to humans and vice versa, than horse racing. The dramatic racing scenes and to see and feel the passion for it in both jockey and horse, is amazing! Anyone who has ever felt completed by a pet and its companionship will identify with and love this movie!
Cinematography doesn't necessarily make a movie. The entire movie is a shallow waste of celluloid, focusing on what happens instead of the emotions involved. It is a shame that the director of the Amazing 'Pleasantville' would do an awful, repetitive, boring piece of garbage like this; the worst movie of 2003, by far
This isn't the great film it could've been and the book is much better but it is still very enjoyable. Its many good points even out the flaws. And the true story of Seabiscuit has so much heart to it that you can't help but be moved by this movie. This is a movie for everyone, not just horse lovers. It isn't about horse racing, it is about an amazing, spirited, undersized horse on a two year losing streak who finally meets the people who understand him and allow him to be the great racehorse that he is. I have always been bored by horse racing on TV and expected to be by the racing scenes in the movie but instead they made me a racing fan. They are filmed so that you feel like you're on a horse in the race and they bring home the danger, drama and excitement of horse racing. You could say those scenes give you a real rush. The movie is beautifully and lushly filmed. Finally, the movie did me a wonderful favor by not giving an epilogue at the end so I had to buy the book (which I hadn't planned to do) to find out what happened to everyone and so I came to read one of the best books ever!! It has so much more heart and soul than the movie - please give the book a try! It has been a bestseller since it's release 2 or 3 years ago and for good reason. You cannot fully appreciate this horse until you read the book because the movie really doesn't give you his complete picture. Still it is worth seeing - enjoy!
really loved this film and I loved the horses!
I loved this movie. It was amazing!!! The story line couldn't have been better! I loved every second! I have always loved racing and this really captured how there is no such thing as a sure thing.
THE MOST HISTORICALLY CORRECT FILM EVER PRODUCED. THIS MOVIE ACCENTUATES THE AMERICAN SPIRIT AND HOW A DOWN ON HIS LUCK HORSE BROUGT SO MUCH JOY AND INSPIRATION TO AMERICANS CAUGHT IN THE MIDDLE OF THE DEPRESSION.
Movie with gorgeous scenery as background for even more exquisite horses. First rate acting and the glory of old California and the history of transportation. Bridges, Macy and Cooper are outstanding actors in this feel-good-when-you-leave film! Beautiful movie! Am reading this great story now.
I watched this film on pay-per-view in Las Vegas this past weekend. I cried, laughed out loud, and consider it one of the highlights of my trip. The acting is superb, the photography is marvelous, and the story itself is as hearwarming as they get.
This is a brilliantly put together film of an event that captured America's imagination and inspired hope across a country struggling with dissappointment and economic hardship. The interweaving of the social times, the background music filled with tense emotion, the cinematography that somehow captured the throbbing energy of the horses and jockeys, alike, make this a film experience which is all too rare these days. Add to that the exceptional performances of a cast that breathed real life into this unique American event, and you have a film that stands far above anything else brought to us in a long, long time. I was overwhelmed by the artistry and emotion delivered by 'Seabiscuit.' Do not miss it!!
WOW-Tobey lost a bunch of weight to place this role and it paid off. The story was right on. When I sat in the theatre and watched this movie, I felt like I was at Santa Ana or the Kentucky Derby. You have to check this movie out!
This was a great movie. It was touching ,heart breaking ,happy ,sad and heart wrenching movie. The cast slides right into their parts. I cryed in the middle of it. Most horse movies are sappy and down right stuipd. But Seabiscuit rises above the rest and leaves them in the backstrech. A great movie about a great horses. This movie is sure to become a classic. In this movie a long shot becomes a legend