Dated '70s movie best for ardent horse lovers.
  • Review Date: July 18, 2013
  • Rated: NR
  • Genre: Family and Kids
  • Release Year: 2007
  • Running Time: 90 minutes

What parents need to know

Positive messages

This movie shows, through talk and example, the responsibility and dedication it requires to care for and train a horse.

Positive role models

Janie assumes full responsibility for the care and training of the horse Danny. She is patient and kind as she trains him. Pat, Janie's mentor, sees the training of horses and life working on a stable as being less about the glamor of winning contests and looking good at the parties, and more about the love of taking care of the horses and training them to be the best they can be.

Violence & scariness

While searching for Danny -- who escaped from his stable -- Janie is confronted by a mean man who grabs her and demands to know what she is doing on his property. Aside from this, there are brief scenes of young girls falling off of horses, but they are uninjured from the falls.

Sexy stuff

A girl sees her mother and stepfather engaging in a passionate kiss while attending a party. A teen girl talks about a teen boy's awkward kissing.

Not applicable
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

A girl tells her mother and stepfather how she saw a teen girl smoking a cigarette behind a barn. In the audience of a horse-riding contest, participants are shown smoking cigarettes.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Danny is a 1977 movie about a girl who bonds with and trains an injured horse to health and, eventually, to participation in a county-wide horse riding contest. The wide lapels, feathered hair, hip-hugging pants, corny background music, and disco dancing firmly place this film in the 1970s, and the overall datedness of the movie make this best for only the most ardent of horse lovers. For parents and kids who love horses, the scenes in which Danny is being trained will keep them engaged.

Kids say

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What's the story?

12-year-old Janie (Rebecca Page) is given the opportunity to take care of an injured horse named Danny while working in the stable of the Cummings, a rich family with a bratty teen daughter named Andrea. With the help of the kindly stable manager Pat (Janet Zarish), Janie develops a bond with Danny, even as Danny seems to actively dislike Andrea, causing the Cummings family to consider getting rid of Danny, who the winner-take-all father considers to be \"a lemon.\" But through a deal arranged by a \"secret benefactor,\" Janie is given the chance to assume full responsibility for Danny, as long as she also continues her work taking care of Andrea's new horse, and as Danny's health improves, Janie and Pat decide they would like to enter Danny into their county's annual horse riding contest, with Janie on the saddle.

Is it any good?


While no doubt a sweet movie about a young girl's love for an injured horse, DANNY, over three decades later, feels more than a bit dated. So much so, in fact, that it's best watched by those who grew up watching it as kids, and those who love movies about horses, horse training, and stable life. For others, the corny background music, the loud fashions, and the overall feel of 1970s style and culture makes this movie feel as dusty as the pair of velvet crushed bellbottoms your aunt keeps in her attic.

However, those interested in horses and horse training should be able to look past that, as there are many scenes in which the responsibility and dedication required to care for a horse are shown. While there are some holes in the story, and a clear attempt at the end of making a sequel, for those who can look past these quibbles and the datedness of the film, this is a competently made and acted movie.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about horse movies. What similarities and differences do you see between this and other movies where horses feature prominently?

  • How is the culture of stable life and horse training conveyed in the film? Does it strike you as accurate?

  • What elements of the movie firmly date it in the 1970s? If the movie were to be remade for today, what would be different about it?

Movie details

DVD release date:June 12, 2007
Cast:Janet Zarish, Rebecca Page, Ruth Ann Bowers
Director:Gene Feldman
Studio:Janson Media
Genre:Family and Kids
Topics:Horses and farm animals
Run time:90 minutes
MPAA rating:NR

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Educator Written bySippin' Cream July 7, 2014

Great Horse-lovers Movie

This 1979 movie tells of a girl's love of horses, her perseverance in caring for & working towards keeping a horse, and the interactions of two different girls as they care for, ride, and compete on their horses. Janey is the main character, a 12 year old, who is struggling with the loss of her father, & what she perceives as his replacement, while watching a friend with wealth mistreat her pony, Danny. When Danny goes lame, he is labeled a 'lemon' by the girl's father, but is secretly purchased for Janey. Watch as Janey learns many life-lessons. It has an odd & unexpected ending, with Janey & Danny living out life together. Safe & worthy of watching, and an example of unconditional love.
What other families should know
Great role models


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