Critter Alley

Critter Alley

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

National Velvet

Lovely Liz rides the Pi.

One of my favorite movies growing up was "National Velvet", based upon a novel by the same name written by Enid Bagnold. As a completely horse-obsessed child (Please, please, please can I get a horse? To which my long suffering parents answered time and again, "Where would you keep the garage?), the story of a young girl that wins her dream horse was made to order for me. What better solution than to go over annoying parental heads and just win the animal. Now they'd HAVE to find a place to put it, wouldn't they?

I first saw this movie back in the days when old films showed up from time to time on t.v. Looking back, I can see in this 1944 film so many elements that make me appreciate it even more now. Elizabeth Taylor (at age eleven you can already see the beauty she'll become) stars as Velvet Brown, another horse-obsessed child. Other notables in the picture include Mickey Rooney as a con-artist and trainer, Angela Lansbury as Velvet's older sister, and Anne Revere as Mrs. Brown (she won an Academy Award for her performance).

The story is simple and sweet, focusing on the bond that develops between Velvet and Mike (Rooney) as they work together preparing the beautiful horse, Pi, to compete in the Grand National Sweepstakes. But big obstacles occur that make the goal look hopeless. And just in case you haven't seen it, I won't spoil the rest of the story.

This one's an oldie, but goodie. Seldom shown on television these days, "National Velvet" is definitely worth the price of purchase because if you're like me, you'll watch it again and again.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Amazingly, I have never seen the film. I'm not sure how I keep missing it. As to the real race, it is my 'local' big race but I will not go to watch it or watch it on TV any more. These days, they allow far too many animals to compete and some are not up to it. There are too many fatalities and I am so soft-hearted about my favourite animal, the horse, that it breaks my heart.