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Secretariat [DVD]

Diane Lane , John Malkovich , Randall Wallace    Universal, suitable for all   DVD
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (66 customer reviews)
Price: 4.21 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Secretariat [DVD] + Seabiscuit [DVD] [2003] + Dreamer [DVD]
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Product details

  • Actors: Diane Lane, John Malkovich, Dylan Walsh, Margo Martindale
  • Directors: Randall Wallace
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: Spanish, Swedish, Norwegian, Finnish, Icelandic, Danish, Portuguese
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: U
  • Studio: Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: 28 Mar 2011
  • Run Time: 118 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (66 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B004C03TK2
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,966 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)



The "greatest racehorse of all time" mantle fits easily around the neck of Secretariat, the 1973 Triple Crown winner. So why not a movie version of this champion's life? Secretariat begins in the late '60s, with some good behind-the-scenes material on how thoroughbreds come to be (there's flavorful atmosphere inside the horsey world, including an account of Secretariat's ownership being decided by a coin flip as part of an old-school agreement). A highly lacquered Diane Lane plays Penny Chenery, the inheritor of her father's stables, who segues from being an all-American mom to running a major horse-racing franchise; reliable character-actor support comes in the form of John Malkovich, as a gaudily outfitted trainer, and Margo Martindale, as Chenery's assistant. Screenwriter Mike Rich and director Randall Wallace must do some heavy lifting to make Lane's privileged millionaire into some sort of underdog--luckily, the hidebound traditions of the male-dominated racing scene provide some sources of outrage. The need to stack the deck even more leads the movie into its more contrived scenes, unfortunately, as though we needed dastardly villains in order to root for Penny and her horse. Meanwhile, attempts to reach for a little Seabiscuit-style social relevance don't come off, and a curious religious undertone might make you wonder whether we're meant to assume that God chose Secretariat over some less-deserving equine. The actual excitement of the races can't be denied, however, and Secretariat's awe-inspiring win at the Belmont Stakes remains a jaw-dropping, still-unequalled display of domination in that event. And maybe in sports. --Robert Horton

Product Description

Diane Lane and John Malkovich star in this Disney horse-racing drama based on real events. Despite knowing nothing about horse racing, stay-at-home mum Penny Chenery (Lane) agrees to take over the Meadow Stables in Virginia after her father falls ill. With the help of veteran trainer Lucien Laurin (Malkovich), Chenery manages to overcome the odds by navigating her way through an aggressive, male-dominated business and ultimately producing the champion racehorse, Secretariat, who becomes the first Triple Crown winner for 25 years in 1973.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
27 of 28 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Exciting racing scenes 27 Dec 2010
Denver housewife Penny Chenery (Diane Lane) takes over her father's horse racing empire when he falls ill, commuting to Virginia to take care of the farm. Having grown up in the racing world, she knows about bloodlines and invests all her efforts in Big Red, soon to be renamed Secretariat. She hires a good, but retired trainer (John Malkovich) and soon the horse is headed for the Triple Crown.

Secretariat was arguably the best race horse ever and deserved a good movie. And while the movie is good, it isn't great because Penny is the focus and the "Don't call me a housewife!" mantra gets old fast. Her success shouldn't have surprised anyone since she grew up in the horse business. She didn't have a personal, loving relationship with the horse; he was merely her meal ticket. The movie's excitement comes from Secretariat's races, which are filmed with heart-stopping intensity. The final race of the film has got to be the Most Exciting Horse Race Ever. It simply is not to be believed.

Diane Lane is fine in the role and the early 70s are recreated well with period cars and wardrobe. If you're a racing fan, you'll enjoy this film.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful Story 5 April 2011
A a horse-lover my husband got me this film but wasn't expecting much. Neither of us could be torn away from the screen. A very moving, heart-warming story for all the family. For both horse lovers and non-lovers. Will definately watch again and again.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great movie about an icon 16 Sep 2011
By Sneaker
This is a great story of a legendary horse sometimes referred to as the "greatest racehorse that ever lived". It has much more of a human interest plot that many other similar "horse movies" so not all the action is centred around the horse. Often it focusses on the people around the horse. This makes for a fuller, more satisfying movie.
The racing sequences are brilliant and the special features of the original races etc give a great perspective on the reality of the plot and the amazing feats that this horse achieved.
In Australia, our racing hero is "Phar Lap" (see movie) with more than a few similarities to the Secretariat story of hope and inspiration to a population in bad times.
Great movie.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A nice tear jerker... if you like those movies! 16 Feb 2011
I only recently watched Secretariat on a flight from London to the Caribbean last week (Feb 2011). I'd never heard of it and it was the first of the movies I decided I'd watch on the flight over. I ended up not watching anything else. And, I know this may sound sad but I watched it more than once during nine hours and it had me bubbling at the same place each time.

I think it's a great inspirational true story about courage and belief and it's suitable for all the family to watch. Such a pity it didn't get pre-release coverage here in the UK as had it done so, I do believe it would have done quite well, that said though, this movie won't be everybody's cup of tea.

I'll definitely get the dvd to add to my collection so my family can see it sometime.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow! 4 Dec 2010
By Julie
As this is a movie about a horse I had to go see it 1st day it hit the cinema. It was absolutely fantastic. I don't have an interest in horse racing but thanks to this movie I now know what a fantastic horse Big Red (Secretariat)was. There are many beautiful close up scenes of Reds' eyes and beautiful words describing the horses spirit. For me this was an amazing movie about an amazing horse!
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Exceeded my expectations 21 Sep 2011
By Dolphin TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
When I got this DVD as a present, I was not thrilled. The initial press reviews I read were tepid or downright scathing. As a long time horse owner and rider (and generally horse crazy person) but not a fan of horse racing, I was familiar with the story of Secretariat and remember watching the live coverage of his Triple Crown races at the time, so my expectations for this DVD were low. To my surprise, I found myself getting fairly swept along by the movie and really enjoyed the pace and treatment of the horse racing action, and the characterization of the various main players. Diane Lane gave a fine performance while John Malkovich was brilliant and funny.

I agree with some of the criticism: even overlooking the many liberties they took with the real events, the movie is really all about Penny Chenery and her determination to see this special foal run and prove himself. She had many obstacles to overcome but too much is made of her "housewife" state, after all she was born and raised on a training farm.

Secretariat was truly a super-horse (his heart was twice the size of that of an average horse and some of his records still stand after 37 years) but neither his physical and mental gifts nor his unmatched dominance of the sport were sufficiently conveyed in this movie. Instead, his remarkable string of victories is presented more like a vaguely mystical journey with religious overtones. In fact, the coverage of the Belmont race is the weakest moment in the whole film, ludicrously interrupted by gospel music and shoddily re-enacted on a much smaller racecourse. It would have been much better to show the actual footage of the race which still stands as one of the greatest moments in any sport.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Secretariat 10 Dec 2011
A wonderful film and shows the true understanding between horse and the person they love. What a fantastic film one that should not be missed ~ a film of courage, faith and love by a true horsewoman xx
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent
very good film
Published 1 day ago by brian evans
5.0 out of 5 stars It's the holy grail of rooting for the underdog movies ...
It's the holy grail of rooting for the underdog movies. It's a team that starts from nothing, and every step of the way as they assemble, the unlikely underdogs pick up another... Read more
Published 13 days ago by Jan Lawicki
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Our whole family likes this film and has watched it alot
Published 16 days ago by J. Staniford
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
a good horse film
Published 21 days ago by geoff bicknell
5.0 out of 5 stars Love it!
Really good film for the whole family to enjoy!
Published 24 days ago by NG123
3.0 out of 5 stars Film not great
Arrived ok
Published 1 month ago by Grace
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
loved this film it takes you into the story and makes you feel like you are there with them...brilliant!!!
Published 1 month ago by Catherine Carew
The film tells a story of one womans determination to save her fathers failing business along with her faith in the one horse 'Secretariat' to achieve what few had done before, win... Read more
Published 1 month ago by rbmusicman
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful feel good film
Great true story. Characters all fit into story well.
Feel good film, will need a box of tissues.
Gripping story about a famous horse and his journey.......
Published 1 month ago by Lady from Aberdeen
3.0 out of 5 stars Just okay
Don't know what I expected really from this but its nowhere near the brilliance of 'Seabiscuit' or 'The black stallion' in terms of horsey films! Read more
Published 2 months ago by Eirian McKay
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