I can easily say that Buck will be one of the best documentaries of the year. You don’t have to be “a horse person” to love or appreciate it. You don’t have to own a horse, ride a horse, or even like horses, for Buck, horses are merely his way of reaching out and helping people with their lives. As Buck says “I’m not helping people with horse problems, I help horses with people problems” and you’d be surprised how much he’s able to discover by reading the horses around these people.

Check out the full review below…

The Players:

  • Director: Cindy Meehel
  • Story About: Buck Brannaman

The Good:

  • Buck: It’s hard not to fall in love with him and want him to come and help you with your problems. He’s the best at what he does, confident, tough as nails, and yet the reason he’s so successful is because he’s honest about being fallible and vulnerable, he’s adamant about using non-violence, and most importantly, he wants to use all that to help people and horses.
  • Structure: The story arch of the film has a wonderful flow that’s always balancing the film and keeping it from becoming “too horsey” so that the film is accessible to everyone. The pacing is fast and the short runtime helps it clip right along.
  • Cinematography: This is a tough film to catch in the eye of the camera. You’ve got people everywhere, horses being trained that don’t want cameras around, and no way to set up a shot or repeat anything. They did a great job at capturing a number of wonderful moments on camera and really making the film beautiful.
  • Teaches You to Listen: Most of us walk through our lives, doing what we need to get by. The beauty of this film is that it reminds you to listen. Watching Buck work with troubled horses and give them his film attention, makes you want to do the same as a viewer. It’s hard to not me mesmerized by his powers to help calmly and softly work with all the characters he comes across on screen.
  • Honesty: Not everything in life works out perfectly. Buck may be one of the best trainers out there but even he crosses the path of a horse he’s unable to “fix” entirely. Much like in life, things don’t always work out the way we’d like. And though Buck comes across like a superhero at times, he’s really just a man who’s working as hard as he can to help, which means sometimes he can’t. It was refreshing to see a documentary that showed all the sides of someone so well, and wasn’t afraid to let the bad things be a part of the story. If anything it just makes it all that much the stronger.

The Bad:

  • Nothing

Overall:

This is truly beautiful and spiritual film that should not be missed by anyone looking for a well-made, honest and eye-opening documentary. Buck is not a celebrity, is not looking for fame or to ever be on the big screen, in fact he probably was hoping to avoid it after his childhood, and it’s that honesty and humility that makes him all the more endearing. He is one of those people put down here on earth to help others and he’s put all of his life and damaged past on the table, now it’s time for him and this film to help others.

Rating: 9/10

Buck is in limited theaters starting June 17th.

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