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(Review originally written at 17 January 2006)

Joe Johnston doesn't make 'great' movies but he certainly knows how to make a movie entertaining. "Hidalgo" is yet another entertaining Joe Johnston movies with a nice looking visual style and some well shot sequences. Still the story is lacking and prevents this movie from being a must-see.

The real problem with "Hidalgo" is, is that the main story-line is about the 3,000 mile race across the Arabian desert but the movie has many side-plots and events in the movie that has very little to do with the main storyline. It's a times distracting and it makes the movie feel inconsistent at times. At times the movie truly feels like some loose sequences put together to make one movie out of. Not the most consistent movie out there, that's for sure.

But who complains really. "Hidalgo" is a good and fun movie to watch that is a pleasure to watch. The visual style is good and works fine for the Arabic backdrop of the story. The action sequences are surprisingly good and also the visual effects do not disappoint. There truly are some spectacular moments in this movie!

Viggo Mortensen probably wasn't the best choice for Frank Hopkins. Believe it or not, he just wasn't always believable enough as a tough Cobwoy. Still he is a good actor and certainly gives the movie some more prestige. The same goes for the presence of Omar Sharif, who also gets to do some fighting again. The characters are all very stereotypical, something that is a must for a movie like "Hidalgo", that tries to bring some mindless but good entertainment.

Certainly a watchable movie that is better than I heard it was. I can recommend this movie to everyone.

7/10

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About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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