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Buck, Movie

Buck 2011

Your Rating/Review

There's no wisdom worth having that isn't hard won.

Winner of the Audience Award (Documentary) at Sundance 2011, about American Buck Braannaman – from his abusive childhood to his life as a successful horse-whisperer. More

"Your horse is a mirror to your soul, and sometimes you may not like what you see. Sometimes, you will." So says Brannaman, an American cowboy and sage on horseback who travels the country for nine grueling months a year helping horses with people problems. A real-life 'horse-whisperer', he eschews the violence of his upbringing and teaches people to communicate with their horses through leadership and sensitivity, not punishment. Hide

Starring: Buck Brannaman

Directed by Cindy Meehl (feature debut)

Festivals & Awards Audience Award (US Documentary), Sundance Film Festival 2011.

Documentary | 1hr 28mins | PG | contains violence and coarse language | Country of Origin: USA | Official Site

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83 votes / 20 comments The Talk

  • 89 %

    Want to See it

    What say you?

    • lohu

      laaaame. dont waste your time

    • rex

      looks good. you don't know what your talking about lohu

    • Emmy

      I have ridden twice with Buck, What a horseman, cant wait to see this!!!!

    • Jen

      I'm a Monty Roberts fan..so I'm going..can't wait..(was that Robert Redford, too /)

    • Baz

      Saw it at the film festival: this man is amazing. He is coming to NZ in Jan

    • Kepa

      I enjoy movies with animals in them like 'Red Dog. Look forward to seeing this.

    • Tim


    • RWood

      Excellent movie. The themes are more universal than a matter of relating to or controlling horses.

    • Kepa

      Should be good, gotta go and see this.

    • Maree

      Love horses and love real life stories. Should be a good film to watch!

    • jeff

      If only it was in 3D

    • Mary

      Thoroughly enjoyed it -would see it again. Iohu spells backwards might say it all.

    • kate

      horse over load

    • kate

      lohu suuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuucks!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Ellie

      Sounds like a Really good movie! Plan on watching it! :)

    • Annie

      Like like like like x1000

    • Amy

      I love horses so I differently plan on seeing this!


    Want to see it?


Flicks.co.nz Review



  • ZhouZhou

    I gave it 4.5 stars - just inspiring!

comment / reply
Dominic Corry Flicks Writer

You don’t have to be a horse person to enjoy this gentle documentary but it would probably help. Buck Brannaman’s life story seems ready made for the movies, so it’s little surprise he was partial inspiration for Robert Redford’s character in The Horse Whisperer. Buck doesn’t actually whisper at the horses he tames in the workshops he hosts all over America; it’s more of an unspoken offering of understanding. But it gets results. More

The film uses Buck’s story to make universally relevant points about the power of empathy and compassion. When we learn of Buck’s abusive upbringing, TV footage of his youthful self doing rope tricks takes on tragic proportions.

Whilst this remains reasonably captivating for its first hour, it kinda runs out of steam after that, suggesting there wasn’t quite enough to justify a full-length movie. Watching Buck run his workshops is entertaining, only up to a point, but his story remains a heartfelt exploration of a gentle soul and a relevant reminder to be nice to the animals. Hide

The People's Reviews


1 rating and 1 review


comment / reply

Great Doco with brutal undertones.

filmlover Flicks Superstar (?)

A very interesting film. When I went the cinema was filled with 'Pony Club' types. But this is not a film for the fainthearted. The brutal descriptions of the beatings Buck took at the hands of his father actually gave me nightmares. Probably not necessary to see this on the big screen but if you like documentaries this one stands up well.


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Press Reviews

88% of critics recommend

ROTTEN TOMATOES SCORE. Read more reviews on Rotten Tomatoes.
A.V. Club (USA)

Perhaps Brannaman’s art is too subtle and instinctive to be captured on camera, but it’s a shame Meehl doesn’t do a better job of capturing exactly what makes him, by all accounts, a miraculously successful trainer. Full review.

Chicago Sun-Times (Roger Ebert)

What I was left with was the goodness of Buck Brannaman as a man. Full review.

Entertainment Weekly (USA)

Buck is shaped with the same economy, restraint, and unfussiness as the man, to unexpectedly inspiring effect. Full review.

Hollywood Reporter

Doc about the real-life "Horse Whisperer" holds fascination both inside and out of the corral. Full review.

Leonard Maltin

Buck is an exceptional movie. Full review.

Los Angeles Times

Deeply moving yet never maudlin. Full review.

New York Post

Buck is best left to TV, where it will land soon. Full review.

New York Times

Holds your attention and heart for a tight 88 minutes. Full review.

Time Magazine

Buck has the air of a beautiful little mystery; even knowing the uplifting outcome, you wonder at the strength that brought him to this place. Full review.

Time Out (USA)

Rides easily into your heart. Full review.