Being a horse lover during the holidays is a special treat.
It is like you belong to a secret society that actually knows what a bobtail is and has heard sleigh bells as they prance and jingle on a horse’s back. We are always looking for the perfect horsey gift under the tree, and we know the easiest way to get out of holiday functions is by showing up in barn clothes (even if they are on Zoom)
There are even horse-themed Christmas films to watch. Along with Die Hard, It’s a Wonderful Life, and A Muppet Christmas Carol, here are four films from the EQUUS Film Channel to add to your list.
2 minutes / Directed by Drew Doggett
The stunning photography In The Realm Of Legends has epic internet staying power. Drew Doggett’s magical images of three grey Icelandic Horses standing beneath rushing waterfalls, trotting through black sand beaches scattered with chunks of translucent ice, and playing in waves have traveled throughout the depths of social media for years.
Even though the film is only two minutes long, it’s one you’ll want to leave on repeat if you are looking for the perfect moment of winter Zen.
1 hour and 28 minutes / Directed by Thadd Turner
During Christmas break, a teenage Juliet is dragged away from her beloved New York City to visit her grandfather’s struggling Louisiana Ranch. City-girl miserable at first, Juliet soon finds herself falling head over heels for Rodeo, a palomino Quarter Horse, and a cowhand named Monty.
When her mother breaks the bad news that they do not have the money to keep Rodeo, Juliet decides to enter the local Christmas barrel race to win the prize money. Farfetched? Yes. Fun escapism? Also, yes.
1 hour and 21 minutes / Directed by Douglas B. Maddox
If you have or ever have been an angsty teenage horse girl during the holidays, then this film is for you. Christmas Ranch tells the story of Lizzie, a troubled and rebellious teenager who is sent to live on her grandmother’s farm in Maryland. (Are you sensing a theme here?)
Lizzies’ sulk turns around when she falls in love with a horse name Hope. But their dreams are soon dashed when she discovers that her grandmother could lose the property unless she can come up with a significant payment by Christmas Eve. Can Lizzie perform a Christmas miracle? Grab some hot Cocoa and find out.
9 minutes / Directed by Erik Petersen
You know it’s wintertime in the west when Skijoring pops up on the nightly news. This adrenaline junkie sport involves a horse and rider galloping at breakneck speeds down a snowy track towing a skier behind them—often over jumps, doing tricks, and even collecting rings.
The short film The Ride profiles one of the top riders in the sport, Ebbie Hansen, as she makes her rounds through the winter circuit. This bittersweet, stunningly photographed film is perfect for getting in the winter mood and making us remember to go outside—even when it’s cold.