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FLICKA

Review by Chastity Campbell

Starring: Maria Bello, Alison Lohman, Tim McGraw
Director: Michael Mayer
Audio: Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound
Video: 2.35:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Studio: 20th Century Fox
Features: See Review
Length: 94 Minutes
Release Date: February 6, 2007

Film ***

Whatís does it mean if you find a horseshoe?  Give up?  It means some poor horse is walking around in its socks, of course!    Yes, well I am the queen of lame jokes!  Get it, horse, lameÖnever mind!

Katie McLaughlin is no longer daddyís little girl!  After being sent away to a private boarding school where she feels out of place and alone she returns home with the hope that one day sheíll be able to take over the family farm.

Unfortunately, Rob McLaughlin is just as hard headed as his daughter, and has no intention of letting his headstrong daughter take over when his son is already being groomed for the job.

When father and daughter but heads there is bound to be fireworks, and knowing these two like she does, Robís wife tries to help things along in that subtle yet effective way momís have!

Katie sees her chance to prove to her father she knows just as much about horses as he does when she happens upon a wild black mustang! 

Katie names the horse Flicka and setís out to break the animal, but she has her work cut out for her, because this horse is more hard headed than her and her father combined!

This is the second time this Mary OíHara classic novel has been made into a film.  Flicka was previously adapted for the big screen in 1943 and titled My Friend Flicka.  This time around the movie still manages to be family friendly, while adding a modern feel to it allowing todayís generation to more easily relate.

Tim McGraw surprised me quite nicely with his portrayal of Katieís father Rob.  You typically end up with performances that remind you more of a wooden wall when musicians try to become actors.  However, McGraw does a very good job in this film.  I think Tim could easily be one of those people who can transition from one medium to the next with no problem at all. 

I know Alison Lohman from her performance opposite Michelle Pfeiffer in White Oleander.  She captured my attention in that film, and continues to hold it with her performance in Flicka!  Alison has a natural flow to her acting style that is perfect for the big screen.  I really hope to see more of her in the future, maybe on the indie circuit!

In the end, Flicka turns out to be a very family friendly movie, with good quality acting, and a great story.  If you are looking for something that wonít disappoint, then make sure you grab this DVD, today!

Video ***

Flicka is presented in both 2.35:1 Anamorphic Widescreen format as well as the standard 1.33:1 full-screen format. I liked the format options along with the nice use of natural light and shadow.

What I didnít like was the artifacting detectable just at the top and to the left of my screen.  There was a minimal amount of dirt visible on this transfer, but over all a very visually pleasing DVD with minor issues that most will probably overlook!

Audio ****

This DVD is a cut above the rest when it comes to audio quality. 

This DVD is presented in a Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound format with language options in Spanish & French Dolby Digital Surround.  The levels were constant, and there were no audible-deficiencies.  Dialogue and background music beds along with sound effects meshed nicely together to create an all around wonderful audio experience.

Features ***

This DVDís extras are heads and tails above the rest, check them out!

The awesome music video My Little Girl that Tim McGraw did for this film is included for your entertainment. Also, a music promo, as well as some deleted scenes.

A making of featurette takes you behind the scenes so you can see how much fun the cast and crew had while working with animals on the set!

Bloopers and a Gag reel take your inside look one step further and offers up some bad lines, and actors with bad memories!

Wrapping up this DVDís extra are scene selection and interactive menus!

Summary:

A good family friendly film, with great video and audio, as well as some great extra features!  Take your DVD collection by the reins and let Flicka gallop into your home and hearts today!

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