Dark Horse

Rated 4.0

Documentarian Louise Osmond retraces the underdog career of the British racehorse Dream Alliance, which enjoyed an entirely creditable racing career 2004-2012, despite unexceptional genes and the fact that it was sponsored by a consortium of working-class neighbors in a depressed Welsh mining town. Osmond mixes talking-head interviews with the Dream’s owners and hometown fans (a warmly down-to-earth bunch of folks), archival news footage, home video and discreet re-enactments to weave a heartwarming and crowd-pleasing story. The interviewees are the main attraction, especially breeder Jan Vokes and her husband Daisy (a nickname), but a surprisingly vivid presence is Dream Alliance himself, who comes off as a scrappy animal with a gamely competitive spirit and a lot of horse sense (no pun intended). J.L.