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''Seabiscuit'' charts the collision of four entities - three human, one horse - in the creation of a legend. During the Great Depression, John "Red" Pollard, the child of a Canadian family, is left in the care of a race horse trainer. Although Red learns the ropes of being a jockey, he earns additional income in underground boxing matches. While this brings in some extra money for Red, it also results in a severe head injury during a fight that leaves him blind in one eye, an injury that could very likely end his jockey career.

Meanwhile, Charles Howard, an office clerk for a bicycle company, is handed a new life by fate. After a happenstance involving a broken-down car, Howard finds automobiles fascinating, learning as much as he can about being a mechanic. Applying his new skills and no small amount of talent, Howard becomes an expert in cars in general, earning a living first modifying cars and then selling them, rapidly rising to be one of the alrgest and most successful car dealers in California. His charmed life is visited by fate again, however, when his son dies in a car accident. Howard is unable to cope, sinking into depression to the point that his wife leaves him and life as he knows it comes apart.

Since he can only obtain a divorce in Mexico, Howard travels across the border where he meets Marcela, whom he ultimately marries. Seeking a new focus for his life, he finds horses and, using his existing fortune, acquires a stable and horses, hiring itinerant horse trainer Tom Smith. Smith, in turn, convinces Howard to buy Seabiscuit, a troubled horse past trainers have labeled a lost cause but whose lineage suggests that, in the right hands, he could become something great.

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''Seabiscuit'' charts the collision of four entities - three human, one horse - in the creation of a legend. During the Great Depression, TheGreatDepression, John "Red" Pollard, Pollard (Creator/TobeyMaguire), the child of a Canadian family, is left in the care of a race horse trainer. Although Red learns the ropes of being a jockey, he earns additional income in underground boxing matches. While this brings in some extra money for Red, it also results in a severe head injury during a fight that leaves him blind in one eye, an injury that could very likely end his jockey career.

Meanwhile, Charles Howard, Howard (Creator/JeffBridges), an office clerk for a bicycle company, is handed a new life by fate. After a happenstance involving a broken-down car, Howard finds automobiles fascinating, learning as much as he can about being a mechanic. Applying his new skills and no small amount of talent, Howard becomes an expert in cars in general, earning a living first modifying cars and then selling them, rapidly rising to be one of the alrgest and most successful car dealers in California. His charmed life is visited by fate again, however, when his son dies in a car accident. Howard is unable to cope, sinking into depression to the point that his wife leaves him and life as he knows it comes apart.

Since he can only obtain a divorce in Mexico, Howard travels across the border where he meets Marcela, Marcela (Creator/ElizabethBanks), whom he ultimately marries. Seeking a new focus for his life, he finds horses and, using his existing fortune, acquires a stable and horses, hiring itinerant horse trainer Tom Smith.Smith (Creator/ChrisCooper). Smith, in turn, convinces Howard to buy Seabiscuit, a troubled horse past trainers have labeled a lost cause but whose lineage suggests that, in the right hands, he could become something great.



While there are separations between the film and the events that inspired it, the broad strokes of the film are generally accurate. Some modifications were made for the sake of drama or to create AnAesop, but the film is largely on point, particularly for a historical heartwarmer.

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While there are separations between the film and the events that inspired it, the broad strokes BroadStrokes of the film are generally accurate. Some modifications were made for the sake of drama or to create AnAesop, but the film is largely on point, particularly for a historical heartwarmer.



* EndOfAnAge: The Wild West being fenced off and cattle herding falling out of favor due to the rapid transport of the steam engine is what forces Tom Smith to give up his idyllic cowboy lifestyle to become a horse trainer, eventually leading him to Charles C. Howard and Seabiscuit.

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* EndOfAnAge: The Wild West TheWildWest being fenced off and cattle herding falling out of favor due to the rapid transport of the steam engine is what forces Tom Smith to give up his idyllic cowboy lifestyle to become a horse trainer, eventually leading him to Charles C. Howard and Seabiscuit.Seabiscuit.
* ExpectingSomeoneTaller:
** War Admiral is described as being 18 hands high, while Seabiscuit himself is described as being "barely fifteen hands". In reality, Seabiscuit was 15.2 and War Admiral only an inch taller at 15.3. The most notable physical differences between them in real life (War Admiral was almost a hundred pounds lighter but had legs several inches longer than Seabiscuit's, and was overall a more refined horse) would have been difficult to portray in film.
** A subverted example of "Expecting Someone Shorter": [[http://www.upi.com/Odd_News/2003/07/25/Limp-Seabiscuit-hobbles-onscreen/13331059156002/ One reviewer]] called Creator/TobeyMaguire, who played Red Pollard, "the world's tallest jockey". Maguire is normal height at 5'8" (173 cm), which ''is'' exceptionally tall for a jockey (and [[RealityEnsues why Red was forced into an eating disorder to keep weight off]]). The subversion: the real-life Pollard was 5'7".


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* SecondaryCharacterTitle: Seabiscuit is the protagonist's racing horse.


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* WhamLine: There's a quiet, brutal gutpunch to the way the description of Seabiscuit's disastrous early career finally concludes.
--> ''When they finally did race him, he did just what they'd trained him to do. He lost.''


Since he can only obtain a divorce in Mexico, Howard travels across the border where he meets Marcela, whom he ultimately marries. Seeking a new focus for his life, he finds horses and, using his existing fortune, acquires a stable and horses, hiring itinerant horse trainer Tom Smith. Smith, in turn, convinces Howard to buy Seabiscuit, a troubled horse past trainers have labeled a lost cause, but whose lineage suggests that, in the right hands, he could become something great.

to:

Since he can only obtain a divorce in Mexico, Howard travels across the border where he meets Marcela, whom he ultimately marries. Seeking a new focus for his life, he finds horses and, using his existing fortune, acquires a stable and horses, hiring itinerant horse trainer Tom Smith. Smith, in turn, convinces Howard to buy Seabiscuit, a troubled horse past trainers have labeled a lost cause, cause but whose lineage suggests that, in the right hands, he could become something great.

Added DiffLines:

''Seabiscuit'' charts the collision of four entities - three human, one horse - in the creation of a legend. During the Great Depression, John "Red" Pollard, the child of a Canadian family, is left in the care of a race horse trainer. Although Red learns the ropes of being a jockey, he earns additional income in underground boxing matches. While this brings in some extra money for Red, it also results in a severe head injury during a fight that leaves him blind in one eye, an injury that could very likely end his jockey career.

Meanwhile, Charles Howard, an office clerk for a bicycle company, is handed a new life by fate. After a happenstance involving a broken-down car, Howard finds automobiles fascinating, learning as much as he can about being a mechanic. Applying his new skills and no small amount of talent, Howard becomes an expert in cars in general, earning a living first modifying cars and then selling them, rapidly rising to be one of the alrgest and most successful car dealers in California. His charmed life is visited by fate again, however, when his son dies in a car accident. Howard is unable to cope, sinking into depression to the point that his wife leaves him and life as he knows it comes apart.

Since he can only obtain a divorce in Mexico, Howard travels across the border where he meets Marcela, whom he ultimately marries. Seeking a new focus for his life, he finds horses and, using his existing fortune, acquires a stable and horses, hiring itinerant horse trainer Tom Smith. Smith, in turn, convinces Howard to buy Seabiscuit, a troubled horse past trainers have labeled a lost cause, but whose lineage suggests that, in the right hands, he could become something great.

Following a fight between Red and other stablehands, Smith hires Red as Seabiscuit's jockey, figuring their matching attitudes and tempers would complement one another. While there are some teething troubles, Smith is ultimately proven correct, and Seabiscuit quickly becomes a favored underdog for the millions suffering in the Depression.

Smith finally contrives a match race between Seabiscuit and War Admiral, the top race horse in the country, but Red breaks a leg during training and is told he will never be able to jockey again. Red recommends an old friend, George Woolf, as a replacement. With Red's coaching and insights in how to handle Seabiscuit, they defeat the favored War Admiral, but Seabiscuit suffers injury at Santa Anita some time later. Red helps Seabiscuit through his recovery and, using a brace he built for his own injured leg, Red rides Seabiscuit in the final race at Santa Anita against Woolf on another horse. When Red and Seabiscuit fall to the back of the pack, Woolf reins in his own horse to pull even with Seabiscuit, using the same technique he'd used in the War Admiral race to get Seabiscuit fired up enough to pull ahead and win his final race.

While there are separations between the film and the events that inspired it, the broad strokes of the film are generally accurate. Some modifications were made for the sake of drama or to create AnAesop, but the film is largely on point, particularly for a historical heartwarmer.


* MayDecemberRomance: Marcela falls for Charles, who is around twenty years her senior.

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* MayDecemberRomance: Marcela falls for Charles, who is around twenty years her senior.older than her.



* WeightWoe: Very much not PlayedForLaughs, as Red and the other jockeys have eating disorders forced on them by their employers to keep them at the ideal weight for riding. Part of the reason Red warms to Howard is that Howard lets him eat.

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* WeightWoe: Very much not PlayedForLaughs, PlayedForDrama, as Red and the other jockeys have eating disorders forced on them by their employers to keep them at the ideal weight for riding. Part of the reason Red warms to Howard is that Howard lets him eat.


* ArmorPiercingQuestion: After Red blows Seabiscuit's first race by losing focus after another jockey cuts him off, he stubbornly and angrily defends his position by constantly asking, "What was I supposed to do?!" Howard goes quiet, then gently asks him, "Son, what are you so mad about?" Red is then forced to confront his repressed rage at being abandoned by his parents, and he's much happier for it for the rest of the movie.

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* ArmorPiercingQuestion: After Red blows Seabiscuit's first race by losing focus after another jockey cuts him off, he stubbornly and angrily defends his position by constantly asking, "What was I supposed to do?!" Howard goes quiet, then gently asks him, "Son, what are you so mad about?" at?" Red is then forced to confront his repressed rage at being abandoned by his parents, and he's much happier for it for the rest of the movie.



* RealityIsUnrealistic / MoodyMount: Interviews with some of the crew reveal that they actually toned down the bad behavior of the real Seabiscuit, which is well documented, out of fear the audience would think they made it up for the movie and/or [[RuleOfFunny for laughs]].

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* RealityIsUnrealistic / MoodyMount: RealityIsUnrealistic[=/=]MoodyMount: Interviews with some of the crew reveal that they actually toned down the bad behavior of the real Seabiscuit, Seabiscuit's bad behavior, which is well documented, out of fear the audience would think they made it up for the movie and/or [[RuleOfFunny for laughs]].



* VeryLooselyBasedOnATrueStory: Refreshingly averted. The film takes artistic liberties here and there, especially to make the characters look more sympathetic (see RealityIsUnrealistic / MoodyMount above), but for the most part it stays true to life. If anything, they ''downplayed'' some of the fantastic events of the real story!

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* VeryLooselyBasedOnATrueStory: Refreshingly averted. The film takes artistic liberties here and there, especially to make the characters look more sympathetic (see RealityIsUnrealistic / MoodyMount RealityIsUnrealistic[=/=]MoodyMount above), but for the most part it stays true to life. If anything, they ''downplayed'' some of the fantastic events of the real story!


* ArcWords: Take a shot every time Howard, or someone in his presence, uses the words "The future!" More subtly: _"You don't throw a whole life away just 'cause it got banged up a little."_

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* ArcWords: Take a shot every time Howard, or someone in his presence, uses the words "The future!" More subtly: _"You ''"You don't throw a whole life away just 'cause it got banged up a little."_"''


* ArcWords: Take a shot every time Howard, or someone in his presence, uses the words "The future!"

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* ArcWords: Take a shot every time Howard, or someone in his presence, uses the words "The future!"future!" More subtly: _"You don't throw a whole life away just 'cause it got banged up a little."_


* ArtisticLicenseHistory: Also fitting in with "Adapted Out" is the real-life background of Red Pollard. The film depicts him as having grown up in an affluent family that lost its fortune in the Great Depression, forcing him to leave to seek his fortune in racing. The real-life Pollards lost their fortune in 1915, long before the Depression, when their brickyard in Edmonton was destroyed in a flood.



* SlobsVersusSnobs: Seabiscuit and his trainers (from the rough and roughed Western horse racing style) versus War Admiral and his trainers (from the clean and pristine Eastern horse racing tradition).

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* SlobsVersusSnobs: Seabiscuit and his trainers (from the rough and roughed rugged Western horse racing style) versus War Admiral and his trainers (from the clean and pristine Eastern horse racing tradition).


* FieryRedhead: Red can be brash and impulsive. At the start of the movie, he has clear rage issues that eventually subside. Doesn't make him any less fiery, however.



* MayDecemberRomance: Marcela falls for Charles, who is around twenty years her senior.



* SlobsVersusSnobs: Seabiscuit and his trainers (from the rough and roughed Western horse racing style) verses War Admiral and his trainers (from the clean and pristine Eastern horse racing tradition).

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* SlobsVersusSnobs: Seabiscuit and his trainers (from the rough and roughed Western horse racing style) verses versus War Admiral and his trainers (from the clean and pristine Eastern horse racing tradition).


* AdaptedOut: Many aspects of the true story were removed to better focus the film's story arc. Among the things that were changed: Charles Howard had multiple children, Howard maintained a stable full of racehorses and jockeys, Red fell in love with, and married, the nurse who cared for him after he broke his leg.

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* AdaptedOut: Many aspects of the true story were removed to better focus the film's story arc. Among the things that were changed: Charles Howard had multiple children, Howard maintained a stable full of racehorses and jockeys, Red fell in love with, and married, the nurse who cared for him after he broke his leg. Red, prior to breaking his leg, also suffered another serious fall where his chest was crushed and had to spend many months convalescing.

Added DiffLines:

* AdaptedOut: Many aspects of the true story were removed to better focus the film's story arc. Among the things that were changed: Charles Howard had multiple children, Howard maintained a stable full of racehorses and jockeys, Red fell in love with, and married, the nurse who cared for him after he broke his leg.


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* LikeASonToMe: Charles comes to love Red like a son and continues to support him even in the wake of a serious injury. Eventually, Charles becomes more preoccupied with keeping Red safe than winning races.

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* BigEater: Red has a hearty appetite and enjoys heaping helpings once he realizes that Howard actually wants him to eat.


* BirdsOfAFeather: Red Pollard and Seabiscuit. Two used and abused misfits who angry at the world for how it mistreated them, now out to show the world what they can accomplish.

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* BirdsOfAFeather: Red Pollard and Seabiscuit. Two used and abused misfits who are angry at the world for how it its mistreated them, now out to show the world what they can accomplish.



* RagTagBunchOfMisfits: Played up in the film, though certainly true by traditional horseracing standards. Charles C. Howard even uses this to get good press.

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* RagTagBunchOfMisfits: RagtagBunchOfMisfits: Played up in the film, though certainly true by traditional horseracing standards. Charles C. Howard even uses this to get good press.


* SlobsVersesSnobs: Seabiscuit and his trainers (from the rough and roughed Western horse racing style) verses War Admiral and his trainers (from the clean and pristine Eastern horse racing tradition).

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* SlobsVersesSnobs: SlobsVersusSnobs: Seabiscuit and his trainers (from the rough and roughed Western horse racing style) verses War Admiral and his trainers (from the clean and pristine Eastern horse racing tradition).


* MeaningfulEcho: "You don't throw a whole life away just 'cause it got banged up a bit." First said by Tom Smith to Charles Howard to explain why he saved the live of a race horse with a bum leg just because he can't race anymore, later said by Charles to Tom to explain [[spoiler:why they should give Red another chance, even though he lied to them about having a bum eye]].

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* MeaningfulEcho: "You don't throw a whole life away just 'cause it got banged up a bit." First said by Tom Smith to Charles Howard to explain why he saved the live of a race horse with a bum leg just because he can't race anymore, later said by Charles to Tom to explain [[spoiler:why they should give Red another chance, even though he lied to them about having a bum being completely blind in his right eye]].



* NewTechnologyIsEvil: While not evil per se, the film likes to show how the popularity of bicycles and automobiles just cannot match the enrichment that working with horses bring to people's lives. For instance, Howard's investment in automotive manufacturing leads to his downfall when the Stock Market crashes, and leads to the death of his son when the kid goes out driving in a truck, whereas investing in horse racing with Seabiscuit gives him the will to live again.

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* NewTechnologyIsEvil: While not evil per se, ''per se'', the film likes to show how the popularity of bicycles and automobiles just cannot match the enrichment that working with horses bring to people's lives. For instance, Howard's investment in automotive manufacturing leads to his downfall when the Stock Market crashes, and leads to the death of his son when the kid goes out driving in a truck, whereas investing in horse racing with Seabiscuit gives him the will to live again.

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