Racing Stripes was a fun film with a good message. I think that it shows us that even though you may be different from everyone else, it’s ok! Be yourself no matter who, or what ;) you are! That even if you may have sadness in your past, it’s ok to move on with your life and be happy.  

(2004) Film Review

This page was created on December 13, 2004
This page was last updated on June 26, 2005

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Directed by Frederik Du Chau
Screenplay by David Schmidt
Story by David Schmidt, Steven P. Wegner, Kirk De Micco & Frederik Du Chau

Click to enlargeCast (in credits order)
Bruce Greenwood .... Nolan Walsh
Hayden Panettiere .... Channing Walsh
Caspar Poyck .... Mailman
Gary Bullock .... John Cooper
Wendie Malick .... Clara Dalrymple
M. Emmet Walsh .... Woodzie
Thandi Puren .... Reporter #1
Morne Visser .... Reporter #2
Dawn Matthews .... Reporter #3
Matt Stern .... Reporter #4
John Lesley .... Paddock Boss
Graeme Hawkins .... Track Announcer
Tarryn Downes .... Anthem Singer
Frankie Muniz .... Stripes (voice)
Mandy Moore .... Sandy (voice)
Michael Clarke Duncan .... Clydesdale (voice)
Jeff Foxworthy .... Reggie (voice)
Joshua Jackson .... Trenton's Pride (voice)
Snoop Dogg .... Lightning (voice)
Joe Pantoliano .... Goose (voice)
Michael Rosenbaum .... Ruffshodd (voice)
Steve Harvey .... Buzz (voice)
David Spade .... Scuzz (voice)
Fred Dalton Thompson .... Sir Trenton (voice)
Dustin Hoffman .... Tucker (voice)
Whoopi Goldberg .... Franny (voice)
Jansen Panettiere .... Young Stripes (voice)
Frankie Ryan Manriquez .... Young Ruffshodd (voice)
Kyle Alcazar .... Young Pride (voice)

Produced by
Daniel Brimer .... contributing producer
Kira Davis .... co-producer
Kirk De Micco .... co-producer
Genevieve Hofmeyr .... line producer
Julie Huntsinger .... associate producer
Broderick Johnson .... producer
Andrew A. Kosove .... producer
Edward McDonnell .... producer
Philip A. Patterson .... co-producer
Lloyd Phillips .... producer
Steven P. Wegner .... executive producer

Original Music by Mark Isham
Cinematography by David Eggby
Film Editing by Tom Finan

MPAA Rating: PG (for mild crude humor and some language)
For rating reasons, go to FILMRATINGS.COM, and MPAA.ORG.
Parents, please refer to PARENTALGUIDE.ORG

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Click to enlargeIn the middle of a raging thunderstorm, a traveling circus accidentally leaves behind some very precious cargo – a baby zebra (voiced by Frankie Muniz). The gangly little foal is rescued by horse farmer Nolan Walsh (Bruce Greenwood), who takes him home to his young daughter Channing (Hayden Panettiere). Once a champion thoroughbred trainer, Walsh has given up horse training for a quiet life with Channing on their modest Kentucky farm.

The little zebra, or "Stripes," as Channing calls him, is soon introduced to the farm's misfit troupe of barnyard residents, led by a cranky Shetland Pony named Tucker (voiced by Dustin Hoffman and Franny (voiced by Whoopi Goldberg), a wise old goat who keeps the family in line. The group is joined by Goose (voiced by Joe Pantoliano), a deranged big-city pelican who's hiding out in the sticks until the heat dies down in Jersey. The un-aptly named bloodhound Lightening (Snoop Dogg) keeps a lazy eye on goings-on at the farm – in between naps.

The Walsh farm borders the Turfway Racetrack, where highly skilled thoroughbreds compete for horse racing's top honor, the ultra-prestigious Kentucky Crown. From the first moment Stripes lays eyes on the track, he's hooked – he knows that if he could just get the chance, he could leave all those other horses in the dust. What he doesn't know is...he's not exactly a horse. But with characteristic zeal, he devotes himself to training for the big time, with a little help from Tucker, who has coached a host of champion racehorses in the past.

Channing has a similar ambition – she longs to train as a jockey, but her protective father refuses to let her compete in the potentially dangerous sport. But Walsh can't ignore her enthusiasm (or her stubbornness) for long, and she convinces him to come out of retirement to train her and Stripes for the Kentucky Crown.

The neighboring Estate is run by the ruthless queen of the Kentucky racing circuit, the incredibly wealthy and exceptionally coldhearted Clara Dalrymple (Wendie Malick). Stripes constantly battles the ridicule of the Estate’s thoroughbreds-in-training, led by spoiled bully Sir Trenton's Pride (voiced by Joshua Jackson), who taunts him relentlessly about his lack of breeding and…unusual appearance. But the Estate is home to some kinder residents, particularly Sandy (voiced by Mandy Moore), a beautiful mare whose admiration and affection for Stripes further enrages his rival.

Stripes makes some friends down at the track as well, most notably the manic horsefly duo Buzz (Steve Harvey) and Scuzz (David Spade), whose love of song and dance is eclipsed only by their love of hot dogs and horse poop.

As he thrusts himself into a world of elite athletes, intense competition and enormous stakes, Stripes must prove he's fast enough and tough enough to run with the big horses if he wants to land in the winner's circle at the legendary Kentucky Crown.

Some champions are born, not bred!

Click to enlargeRacing Stripes is a film about a zebra who believes he is a race horse. He has to over come many obstacles during the film. When he finds out the truth about what he really is, he’s got to learn to accept it, with the help of his great barnyard friends of course. Although this classic underdog story is quite predictable, it does have some great characters and funny parts.

Click to enlargeThe relationship between father Nolan Walsh, (Bruce Greenwood) and daughter Channing Walsh, (Hayden Pannettiere) shows how Nolan has to overcome his sadness for his wife’s death and accept that his daughter isn’t a little girl anymore. She needed her father to get over their past so she could get on with her future.

Click to enlargeI really liked the horse flies! They were hilarious! I had the privilege of interviewing Steve Harvey who was the voice of Buzz. He commented on how he and David Spade (Scuzz) did a lot of adlibbing while doing the voices for those delightful flies, which is really great because that was the best part of the movie for me! Those two make a great team! They are absolutely comical!

Click to enlargeRacing Stripes was a fun film with a good message. I think that it shows us that even though you may be different from everyone else, it’s ok! Be yourself no matter who, or what ;) you are! That even if you may have sadness in your past, it’s ok to move on with your life and be happy.


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