A Pony Tale Movie Poster Image

A Pony Tale

Disappointing, boring talking-horse film falls flat.
  • Rated: NR
  • Genre: Family and Kids
  • Release Year: 2013
  • Running Time: 89 minutes

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The main message of the film is positive: that the world doesn't need another shopping mall and everyone should be able to connect with nature and animals.

Positive role models

Wesley and Kim (Juliet's stepmom) are positive role models because they try to teach Wesley's father the importance of nature and that he shouldn't be materialistic. 

Violence & scariness

Juliet is hit over the head with a horseshoe. She also hits Wesley with it, though her intent isn't to be violent but to activate the magic of the horseshoe. Juliet's stepbrothers repeatedly hit each other with the horseshoe as well, but it's more comical than anything else, complete with ridiculous sound effects.

Sexy stuff

Teen crushes are shown, and Mr. Beetle talks about his ex-wives, but only one chaste kiss on the cheek is shown.

Not applicable

Mr. Beetle is shown as being very materialistic in his quest to turn the ranch into a shopping mall, but the other characters spend the movie trying to show him the error of his ways.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Mr. Beetle asks for a gin and tonic, but he's never actually given the drink. There's also a ridiculously bad joke about his ex-wife being named Bev, short for beverage, because her parents drank a lot.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that A Pony Tale (also known as A Talking Pony?!?) is another family-friendly film about talking animals from director David DeCouteau. As with its predecessor A Talking Cat?!?the movie features DeCouteau's signature cheesy dialogue, talking animals that don't really impress, and awkward scene transitions and recycled footage. Although it may not be the best film, it does have a positive message about the importance of family and nature. And, with only moderate references to adult relationships and teen crushes, one reference to alcohol, and some slight slapstick violence, the film is totally appropriate for young tweens and up.

Parents say

Not yet rated
Review this title!

What's the story?

A PONY TALE is a clean family film about a young girl trying to save her family's ranch from foreclosure. After getting hit on the head by a falling horseshoe, Juliet (Jenny Cipolla) is able to hear her horse Horatio (voiced by Johnny Witaker) talk. Although Juliet's stepmother tries to convince the scheming Mr. Beetle that the ranch shouldn't be turned into a shopping mall, Juliet tries to convince Mr. Beetle's cute son Wesley that Horatio can really talk. Mr. Beetle's visit gives everyone a chance to evaluate how important the ranch is to Juliet's family and how important nature and animals are to everyone.

Is it any good?


If you're looking for a feel-good talking-horse movie, A Pony Tale shouldn't be your first choice. It's a clumsy, awkward film that will probably get boring for even young viewers pretty fast. There's really only about 30 minutes worth of story line in the movie, but it's stretched to over an hour with the addition of random shots of the scenery between every scene. The dialogue is incredibly bad, the plot is minimal, and the talking horse is surprisingly unexciting. The DVD cover also is confusing since at some point the name was changed and a different girl is shown on the cover than is shown in the actual film.

Kids looking for a talking-animal film probably will be disappointed in the lack of screen time for Horatio, who really just stands around and "tells" bad jokes (though, unlike Mr. Ed, his mouth doesn't actually move, so it's surprisingly unengaging). And although there are some mildly funny hijinks performed by Juliet's stepbrothers, much of the film is Juliet's stepmother and Mr. Beetle discussing his personal problems and the plight of the ranch, which will bore most kids. Parents may appreciate the positive message and may be amused by how horribly bad the movie is, but the novelty of both probably will​ wear off pretty fast.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about Mr. Beetle's change of heart. Do you think it was realistic? 

  • What's the appeal of talking-animal movies? How does this one compare to others you've seen?

  • If you could make a talking-animal film, which animals would you feature?

Movie details

DVD/Streaming release date:September 1, 2013
Cast:Kristine DeBell, Jason Faunt, Jenny Cipolla
Director:David DeCoteau
Studio:Phase 4 Films
Genre:Family and Kids
Run time:89 minutes
MPAA rating:NR

This review of A Pony Tale was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

About Our Ratings

The age displayed for each title is the minimum one for which it's developmentally appropriate.

Get more information about our ratings.

Great handpicked alternatives

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Teen, 13 years old Written byIts__me272 March 31, 2016

A Pony Tail

I don't think this was the best movie ever. Me and my sister noticed how the camera shaked alot and how the horse's voice doesn't sound super realistic. Something that was very annoying was they kept showing waterfalls for like 2 minutes. On rate from 1-5 I rate it a 2 :( I thought this movie was gonna be a fun movie since theirs a talking horse but I guess not.
Teen, 14 years old Written byBarrel Racer660 August 4, 2015

Have the writers and directors ever seen a horse before this movie?

So, for horse people this movie will be amusing at the least. There are several glaring mistakes. Juliet said that her horse wouldn't remember something because he was "just a pony." She should have said foal or yearling, or even two-year-old. She also could have said colt. She also led him on the right side, not the left side. Now, I support doing things on both sides with horses, but for a movie that is supposed to show kids about horses, they should probably do generally accepted things. She also often calls her horse a pony, in complete seriousness. His halter is often left on with a lead rope while he is in his pasture, which is dangerous because it could get caught. Also, it is often tied incorrectly or far too far up on his face. However, the movie had comedy intended for non horsey people as well, and although I'm fairly sure the directors hadn't seen a horse before this, it was an okay movie and fairly entertaining.