The feel-good comedy Dream Horse premiered just a few weeks ago at Sundance, and I remember weighing whether or not to attend it. On the one hand, it featured the always-reliable, especially at Sundance, presence of Toni Collette. But at the same time, it also looked like one of those easy festival darlings meant to lure in paying crowds at public screenings, but not necessarily to challenge audiences. So I skipped it. I never heard anybody say two words about the movie, so I’m guessing my prediction was right.
That’s not to say Dream Horse is a bad movie. Quite the contrary, it looks pretty good and may very well be a crowd-pleasing sleeper. The story centers on a barmaid who joins with others in her small-town village to breed and train the champion racehorse, Dream Alliance. Collette is joined in the cast by Damian Lewis, Owen Teale, Joanna Page, Karl Johnson, Steffan Rhodri, Anthony O’Donnell with Nicholas Farrell and Sian Phillips, with Euros Lyn behind the camera.
SYNOPSIS: The film tells the inspiring true story of Dream Alliance, an unlikely racehorse bred by small-town Welsh bartender, Jan Vokes (Academy Award® nominee Toni Collette). With very little money and no experience, Jan convinces her neighbors to chip in their meager earnings to help raise Dream in the hopes he can compete with the racing elites. The group’s investment pays off as Dream rises through the ranks with grit and determination and goes on to race in the Welsh Grand National showing the heart of a true champion.
Dream Horse opens on May 1st.