Pride of the Blue Grass
Ever since having stumbled onto all the old James Bond movies in On Demand, and deciding that watching the trailers was far more entertaining than watching the actual movies, I've had a thing for old trailers. Such as this one. Admittedly, my favorite thing is the trailer's inability to decide if the movie was the most thrilling or the most different. The most thrillingly different! (In actuality, I wouldn't call it either.)
I love old movies. Especially the ones that are overly sentimental, ridiculous, and involve people getting into fist fights numerous times for little to no reason. Don't like someone? Possibly that someone may have insulted your great aunt you probably (although you're not too sure) never actually met? Punch them in the face! Although, don't act shocked if the person punches you right back, because it's damn well happening. Every time.
Pride of the Blue Grass, not to be confused with 1954's Pride of the Blue Grass, hits the trifecta. Sentimental, ridiculous, and random punching. Wonderful! This is a movie I can watch. It all starts out with Danny. Danny's dad committed an awful error at some point in his life, and the whole racing community shuns him as if he were a leper. So I guess it all starts out with Danny's dad. REGARDLESS, whatever happened rubs off on Danny's reputation, resulting in relationship woe for Midge and Danny, because Midge's father, Bob, will not allow young love between his daughter and the boy who has nothing to do with whatever his dad did way long ago. So the two are forced to talk to each other on the phone and pretend they're parsing Latin verbs. This means that Danny's mare has foaled, and Midge has escaped Bob's wrath!
Midge runs over to see the new foal, but I guess somehow Bob figured out that talking about Latin verbs on the phone was code for my daughter is sneaking over to that boy's house! And he hauls Midge away. Afterward, the barn is struck by lightning, and only Danny and the foal survive. Danny decides to become a roving track brat, leaves the foal with Midge, and takes off.
The foal, Gantry the Great, is impossible. Bob doesn't want to deal with him anymore, but then Danny shows up in some juvy court and for whatever reason the judge releases him into Midge's care. Never mind that they're both minors, okay. This is how things worked in 1939, CLEARLY. Just to be sure that this is okay, the judge calls Bob, and Bob stresses that he's not okay with this, but inexplicably it doesn't seem to matter to anyone. Midge gets her way, and Danny proceeds to punch out one of Bob's exercise riders who looks shockingly like Chris Kattan. Danny and Gantry are put to pasture, which is convenient for them because Danny gets to finally train Gantry.
The plot of Wonder's Promise with a side of Cindy's Glory invariably ensues. If Ashleigh and Cindy were likely to punch out people for making snide remarks, anyway. Who here wants to see Ashleigh punch Brad? WHO? It can't just be me, right? (This may seem like a rapid departure from my normal attitude, but I don't really care.) Well, Gantry eventually shows his stuff, is promoted to most awesome horse in the barn, and is put on the path to Kentucky Derby awesomeness.
But he does not win the Kentucky Derby! Everyone goes from loving Danny to assuming he threw the race. That's love and support for you, Danny. At least Midge has his back. They discover that Gantry is blind, so clearly he cannot run in races anymore. I mean, that's logical. Even the Thoroughbred series didn't put Pirate in more races after discovering he couldn't see. Danny gets to stay at the farm, but he's not finished yet. Oh, no. Gantry may not be able to race, but surely he can, like, jump things. Right?
So what's like racing, but involves more work and more skill and more athleticism that could possibly be a wise career move for Gantry? That's right, kids, steeplechasing! And not just steeplechasing. The Grand Freaking National.
And that is where I'll leave this entry. Oh, except for this. I love that TIME has been randomly putting every article they ever published online. 1938: blind horse jumps something at Ak-Sar-Ben. 1939: blind horse stars in his own movie! Fantastic.