Disney publicity is showing Randall Wallace‘s Secretariat (Disney, 10.8) to certain folks in the loop, so I called around today and finally heard two non-vested views. Both informers believe that Diane Lane may be in line to snag the same kind of praise that Sandra Bullock got for her performance in The Blind Side.
“It’s very good for Diane, is what it is,” says one viewer. “Because it’s a strong role, because of her performance, it could turn into a kind of Blind Side thing for her, depending on how Disney handles it.”
Everyone presumably knows the Secretariat story about owner Penny Chenery (Diane Lane), a horse-farm inheritor who brushed back financial pressure and adversity while guiding Secretariat, an unlikely seeming champion at first, to win the 1973 Triple Crown.
The significant costars are John Malkovich, Nelsan Ellis, Dylan Walsh, Dylan Baker and Fred Dalton Thompson.
“It’s a great story with really good acting…a very solid horse-racing movie that’s somewhat conventional but very good,” another viewer says. “They use a special horsey-cam in the racing scenes, a camera that wasn’t used for Seabiscuit, a camera right on the hooves, right in front, right in that race. The sound is really good, the sounds of the horse breathing, as it all happens.
Lane’s character “inherits the horse-farm business from her ailing father (Scott Glenn), a woman in a man’s world….the real story is Lane’s character…persevering against the odds, actually going against her own brother and then her own husband, who wants her to sell the horse because of a $7 million tax bill….they didn’t believe the horse had the stones to win, much less win the Triple Crown. Malkovich is really good. I though it was terrific for what it is, beautifully done.”