Each year thousands of wild horses are rounded up and removed from public lands by the U.S. Government. All will need permanent homes. None has ever been touched by a human hand.
Wild Horse, Wild Ride tells the story of the Extreme Mustang Makeover Challenge, an annual contest that dares 100 people to each tame a totally wild mustang in order to get it adopted into a better life beyond federal corrals.
Stunning and poignant, Alex Dawson and Greg Gricus’ debut feature documentary chronicles a handful of unforgettable characters from their first uneasy meeting with their horses and over three months as they attempt to transform from scared strangers to the closest of companions.
Eventually all will converge in Fort Worth, Texas, to compete against each other and offer the horses up for adoption at an auction in which the trainers, if they wish to keep their horses, must bid against the public.
Hailed by The Hollywood Reporter as a “crowd-pleaser with a big heart,” the film traverses across the United States to tell stories of the profound the bonds that can develop between people and animals. From the rolling hills of New Hampshire to the Navajo Nation to the heart of Cowboy Country, the film captures a journey that is at times harrowing, humorous, heartwarming and heartbreaking as these wild spirits- both human and horse- embark on the ride of their lives.
WILD HORSE, WILD RIDE’s CHARACTERS
*Seeking better opportunity for himself and his family, Jesus emigrated from rural Mexico to Door County, Wisconsin in his early 20s. Now in the construction and roofing business, he longs for his days working with horses on his father’s ranch. Armed with unparalleled abilities in trick roping and a gift for communicating with horses, Jesus is looking to make a name for himself in the “good old cowboy” world. And Compadre, the powerful and majestic mustang with whom he is paired, may just be his ticket.
*Charles is a Navajo grandfather out to prove that he’s still capable of the feats of his youth. Once a champ on the Native American Rodeo Circuit, Charles, now stiff and aching, is ready to challenge himself again. But when he meets Comanche, the enormous, aggressive and angry mustang he’s slated to train, Charles must face the fact that competing in this event entails risking life and limb and that victory may mean just surviving.
*Carlos, Charles’ son, is driven by a pride in his Navajo heritage. Also a competitor, Carlos wants the rest of the world to see that one who hails from the Reservation can compete with the best of the best. It’s a dream his father once held for himself and now hopes Carlos might fulfill.
*Wylene describes herself as “a daredevil with a big smile.”
A blonde beauty with theatrical flair, the utterly fearless “Extreme Wylene” is Cowgirl personified. Her style and ability show that just because a girl wears sequins and fake eyelashes, it doesn’t mean that she’s not a force to be reckoned with.
*George is a big, grizzled Texas cowboy with a competitive spirit and a rough-and-tumble exterior. With the help of his wife Evelyn, he’s out to win the competition. But when Waylon, a scrawny and ornery wild horse, refuses to cooperate, George must reevaluate his own attitude… and ultimately finds himself blindsided by the outcome.
*Brothers Nik and Kris, 19 and 21, live in rural New Hampshire. Home-schooled most of their lives by their parents, they reject the traditional principles of horse training and approach the animals in their own creative and intuitive way… with staggering results.
*Melissa is a PhD in biomedical engineering at Texas A&M University. Highly successful for her tender age of 26, Melissa has never known failure… but she’s also never trained a horse, let alone a wild one. Her mustang Zero will test everything she’s ever thought about herself. Will her frustration get the best of her? Or will she be able to conquer her inexperience and earn Zero’s respect?