This is a period piece centering around a rugged western hero who decides to prove himself by being the first westerner to enter into a gruelling desert horse race in the Middle East, hoping ot prove that his American horse Hidalgo is just as good if not better than any of the Arabian horses he's up against.
The film is very schmaltzy, sappy, and emotionally manipulative, and some of it does work, but a lot of it fell flat for me. Viggo Mortensen's presence helps things out a lot, and there;s some wonderful cinematography, but some of this was just really too cheesy for me. That, and I really don't care for the opening stuff involving the Native Americans. It jsut comes off as forced, unnecessary, pandering, and really mishandled. It shouldn't even be in here, really. Also, Omar Sharif is a great guy, but give him some better material to work with, especially a character who we're supposed to like (in the end), but can't buy how it gets to that point.
Yeah, I'm ripping on this movie, and some of it is just nitpicking and personal issues, but really, this film just isn't that special or all that memorable even. Go with Seabiscuit instead, or, now that it's out, War Horse.