Saturday, October 22, 2011


Buck Brannaman was in a rope trick act with his older brother as a kid, and was abused so viciously by his father he had to be removed from his custody shortly after his mother died. However, instead of turning into a similar monster, Buck grew to be a compassionate horse wrangler, using stern but nonviolent techniques to "break" horses. Traveling around the country demonstrating his methods, he became a renowned horse whisperer and a key contributer to the Robert Redford film. Brannaman seems like the real article, sporting a cowboy hat and dishing out sage advice. As we travel with him around the country and learn about his past, mostly from friends, we become drawn into this sentimental, yet not overly cloying story. And, when it seems the film has grown redundant, there is a dark sequence involving a wild horse, something that comes as unexpected. "Buck" is a hard film to dislike (believe me I tried) and actually ends up being quite infectious and moving as well.