In the age of Matrix, I Robot, A.I., Minority Report, etcetera. ain't easy to find adventure-movies made in the old style: the good guy, the very bad guy, the girl, and a happy ending ... Well, this is what Hidalgo offers us.
Viggo Mortensen's character is a cowboy specializing in long distance horse races, he and his horse (Hidalgo, a Mustang) are just unbeatable. So some arabian skeikh (Omar Sharif) sends for him to take part in the biggest horse race in the world (4.800km long, through the Arabian desert) to prove that Mortensen's non-thoroughbred horse is not as good and resistant as arabian horses. That's the starting point. And from that moment on we will witness a marvelous adventure through the desert in which the starring will have to face all kind of difficulties and traps. As I've said: and old style adventure movie. No absurd and meaningless special effects, no absurd and unbelievable plots, and no pretensions but to make the audience have a good time. And no doubt Joe Johnston achieves that: the movie is 136 minutes long but you don't feel tired nor boring in any moment. The rhythm is just great and well measured. The photography and the landscapes are just astonishing; and the work of Mortensen is so remarkable. He seems to be the perfect heir to those actors specializing in adventure movies just like Harrison Ford, though Mortensen's characters (Hidalgo, LOTR) usually are a little more darker than Ford's.
My rate: 8/10