A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
It requires a great deal of patience to train an animal, but the bond that forms between an animal and a person is mutually beneficial.
Positive Role Models
Barrie Burger is a wise caretaker of horses, and stern but fair to the people he trains. Pierre is depressed, but seeks to heal himself and learns positive lessons throughout the movie.
Violence & Scariness
A man punches a mirror and smashes his head against a wall in his dorm room. A horse is shown with bloody wounds.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Early in the film, characters down hard liquor shots in a karaoke bar.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Riding Tornado is a slow-paced tale focused on a depressed college student and his healing relationship with a horse. While too slow and serious for many tweens and teens, animal lovers might enjoy the meditation on the bond between human and animal. Parents main concerns might be a scene early in the movie where characters down shots of hard liquor, and another scene where the main character punches a mirror and smashes his head against his dorm room wall. Also early in the film, a horse is shown with bloody wounds. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
The slowness of this journey will probably disengage younger viewers accustomed to more bells, whistles, and nonstop action. Compared to other films about the relationship between horses and the people who love them, RIDING TORNADO is as slow-paced as one might imagine life would be in a small desert town in the Kalahari Desert (where the movie is set). The theme of a troubled young man learning and growing as much as the troubled horse he's training is interesting enough, even if beyond-wise "horse whisperer" characters who only speak in stoic profundities has been overdone.
In spite of this, the shots of sunrises and sunsets in the Kalahari Desert are quite beautiful, and the film does offer a glimpse into the life and culture of South Africa. Riding Tornado goes to great lengths to drive its points home, but for horse-lovers everywhere, this film should prove enjoyable, as well as an affirmation of their own feelings about the care and training of horses.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.