Sunday, September 12, 2010


Simply beautiful and stunning to watch

While I was attending the BlogHer conference in New York, I was invited by Disney to see their new movie "Secretariat".

"Secretariat" will not be released until October 2010, but Disney invited a few bloggers attending the BlogHer conference to a special advance screening at the Manhattan Regal theater and to attend a meet and greet cocktail party with the movie's producer Mark Ciardi.

The movie "Secretariat" is based on the real life story of Penny Chenery, owner of the racehorse Secretariat, who won the Triple Crown in 1973.  Penny (played by Diane Lane) is a housewife and mother of four children. Her father (played by Scott Glenn) owns a horse racing farm that has been losing money for years. Although Penny grew up in horse ranching, she has allowed life and the times to define her as just a housewife and mother. When her mother suddenly dies and her father has a stroke, Penny is left with the decision to either sell the farm and continue with her life as it is, or gamble on running the horse ranch and changing the fortunes of the ranch and herself. Penny decides to bet the ranch on one horse named "Big Red" who she feels has the right stuff to win the triple crown.

Penny hires a very unorthodox trainer named Lucien Laurin (played by John Malkovich) and a demanding jockey Ron Turcotte (played by Otto Thorwarth) to train Big Red and all their efforts pay off as the horse is renamed Secretariat and starts to win race after race. But no one, save Penny, believes Secretariat has the intensity and stamina to win the Triple Crown. So she makes a performance guarantee to her investors that will cost her $6 million dollars if the horse fails to win.

Me with Secretariat movie producer Mark Ciardi
In true Disney fashion, "Secretariat" is a movie with a wonderful story and a brilliant acting cast.  Even though I knew how the story was going to end, the movie made my heart pound and left me breathless as I got caught up in the storyline. I was totally rooting for Penny as she fought against being typecasted as just a homemaker.  She showed that a woman can have the brains and the tenacity to build a business and run it as successfully as a man.  The movie also showed the courage that it takes to live life by your own terms.

Besides the great story, the movie cinematography was excellent. The horse racing scenes were out of this world exciting. The way the movie was shot, the audience is put at the level of the horse and rider and it gave me the sensation of being part of the race. "Secretariat" is simply beautiful and stunning to watch. The movie even contains actual footage from Secretariat's 1973 win in the Preakness Stakes. The cinematography is further enhanced by the music score, which contains moving African American gospel music.

Disney has a real winner in "Secretariat". The combination of a great story with great acting and wonderful cinematography makes this film the total winning package. I know that "Secretariat" will do very well at the box office when it opens in theaters on October 8, 2010.

One FREEISMYLIFE reader will win 4 Secretariat branded items including a Men’s T-Shirt, Women’s T-Shirt, Youth T-Shirt and a Hat.  Too Cool!

To Enter:

-Fill out the information in the form below.

- One entry per person please.

- The contest ends on Friday, October 8, 2010 at 11:59am EST.

- The winner will be selected by random number generation.

- Contest fulfillment will be provided by Disney.

- Please enter your FULL mailing address.  Addresses are for contest fulfillment only and will not be sold to any third parties.

- You can get 1 extra contest entry for liking the movie Secretariat on Facebook.

- You can get 1 extra contest entry for following the movie Secretariat on Twitter.
- You can get 1 extra contest entry for liking FREEISMYLIFE on Facebook.
- You can get 1 extra contest entry for following FREEISMYLIFE on Twitter.


Disclosure: I received a special "Secretariat" gift bag with branded movie items.

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