Yes, this tearjerker of a movie has been nominated for an Oscar for Best Picture. And oddly enough, I think, it’s the only Best Picture nominee that I’ve seen this year. I guess I better get myself out to the movies!
But I digress. War Horse is based on a book written by Michael Morpurgo about 30 years ago for young adults. The story is predictable and soppy, but I totally fell for it.
The movie begins in rural England prior to World War I. Ted and Rose Narracott are poor tenant farmers. They live with their son Albert on a hardscrabble piece of land. Ted goes to a local horse auction to purchase a plow horse to help with the brutal work of clearing the stony fields. He comes home, instead, with a beautiful thoroughbred deemed totally unsuitable for farm work. Albert takes on the task of training Joey, who proves himself incredibly strong and determined.
When World War I breaks out, the Tarracotts sell Joey to the army. War Horse follows Joey through a succession of owners and battles. Joey’s strength and intelligence shine through and he survives the war. What happens then, I won’t say. But if you don’t cry at least a little, there is something wrong with you!