MPAA Rating: PG

Entertainment: +4

Content: +4

Alison Lohman, Tim McGraw, Maria Bello, Ryan Kwanten. Family adventure/drama. Written by Mark Rosenthal & Lawrence Konner, based upon the novel My Friend Flicka by Mary OHara. Directed by Michael Mayer.

FILM SYNOPSIS: The filmmakers have re-engineered the story of a child coming into adulthood, changing the main character from a boy to a girl. Sixteen-year-old Katy McLaughlin dreams of fulfilling her family legacy by working on her fathers ranch in modern-day Wyoming. Katy finds a wild mustang, which she names Flicka, and sets out to break through to Flicka and make her a riding horse. But like Katy, Flicka has a disdain for authority and is not about to give up her freedom without a fight.

PREVIEW REVIEW: Heres a remake they got right. Oh, theres nothing new being said, and certainly it was said with real panache 50 years ago when Elizabeth Taylor first got on the Pie (National Velvet), but a new generation of 13-year-old girls, and maybe even their male counterparts, will find this absorbing and relatable. I say that with such authority because our screening audience was filled with teen and preteen girls and they seemed to be relating and absorbing. True, not many boys in the audience, but with all the rodeo action and wild Wyoming locales, I believe they will find the proceedings worth their time.

Though parental units may occasionally lift an eyebrow at the vehement voices of adolescent revolt, the film portrays positive family relations and is replete with valuable life lessons. I enjoyed this film and found it to be the best horse-and-her-girl movie since National Velvet.

Preview Reviewer: Phil Boatwright
20th Century Fox

The following categories contain objective listings of film content which contribute to the subjective numeric Content ratings posted to the left and on the Home page.

Crude Language: None

Obscene Language: Three or four minor expletives (damn and dang), but the filmmakers avoid harsh language.

Profanity: The expression Oh my God is heard twice when the horse is injured, but no profane use of Gods name or of His Sons.

Violence: A mountain lion threatens the girl, but she is protected by Flicka. Later, the horse is attacked by the bobcat. We see this attack, but the filmmakers avoid excessive brutality. Attempting to tame the wild mustang, Katy gets bumped around and scratched up a bit, but again, the filmmakers are trying to make the story exciting without excessive violence. Blood: Some blood as the horse is wounded by the mountain lion.

Sex: Teenage attraction leads to some kissing.

Nudity: None

Sexual Dialogue/Gesture: None

Drugs: None

Other: There is some teen disobedience, but the family proves to be loving and caring.

Running Time: 96 minutes
Intended Audience: Family

Click HERE for a PRINTER-FRIENDLY version of this review.