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User Reviews for: Ride Above

/10  one year ago
While it happily avoids current Hollywood story formula, this astonishing film is well served by the Withdrawal-Devastation-Return structure that it inherits from Mediterranean oral epic. Yet it was not the film’s durable structure that mesmerized me and the rest of its first American audience Friday night at the Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival. What astonished me was the extraordinary moral depth of this achingly beautiful story and world from Writer/Director Christian Duguay. His film is emotionally riveting from the first scene to the last.
The movie is well grounded in the quintessential theme of cinematic, horse-themed stories: emotional honesty as the basis for meaningful relationships, despite, in the last scenes of the film, some surprising chicanery that illustrates the value of those goods internal to an activity or calling over those that are external to any one life or practice, like money and fame. The film makes us believe in and care about its characters, and ultimately, and entirely in its subtext, the film does something even more extraordinary: it exhibits and extolls the virtues themselves. The story itself retains all the uncertainties of our contingent, vulnerable existence, but the implicit argument of the story is emotionally compelling and inexorable. Ride Above is a charming, heartbreaking, beautiful exercise of a viewer’s own imagination and sympathies. This reviewer feels he became, somehow, a little better as a human being for having seen it.
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