Next up in the 2011 Sundance US Documentary Competition is Cindy Meehl’s BUCK, which profiles real life horse whisperer Buck Brannaman.
Sundance Program Description:
A living legend in the horse world, Buck Brannaman was the inspiration for THE HORSE WHISPERER. For this true cowboy, horses are a mirror of the human soul. Reared by an abusive father, Buck eschews violence. By teaching people to communicate with horses through instinct, not punishment, he frees the spirit of the horse and its human comrade. Crisscrossing the world with Zenlike wisdom, Buck promulgates grace in the bond between man and horse. The animal-human relationship becomes a perfect metaphor for meeting the challenges of daily life, whether they consist of raising kids, running a business, or finding your flow with a dance partner.
What is extraordinary about Buck Brannaman, the man, leaps off the screen in this strikingly cinematic film by first-time director Cindy Meehl. Part guru, part psychologist, the adult Buck, who was once a beaten kid, has now beaten the odds. Buck Brannaman could transform your troubled horse. BUCK the movie may transform your soul.
First-time filmmaker Meehl has enlisted the expertise of a seasoned crew of collaborators, including, among others, Producer Julie Goldman, who has produced or executive produced dozens of documentary projects over the past decade, including most recently SONS OF PERDITION and 2009 Sundance Documentary Film Editing Award-winner SERGIO; and creative consultant Andrea Meditch, who executive produced, among other films, the Academy Award-winning and 2008 Sundance Grand Jury and Audience Award-winning MAN ON WIRE, the 2007 Sundance Audience Award-winning IN THE SHADOW OF THE MOON, and Werner Herzog’s ENCOUNTERS AT THE END OF THE WORLD and GRIZZLY MAN (2005 Sundance).
Why You Should Watch:
Though soft-spoken, Brannaman has a magnetism that makes for an engrossing and eminently appealing screen subject. The details of his troubled, violent past are hinted at early but fully revealed gradually, lending them a surprisingly affecting weight that might catch you offguard.
For screening dates and times at Sundance, click the link in the first paragraph above. The film also has a website and Facebook page to keep interested audiences updated on future screenings.