Ride Like A Girl: The story of the first female jockey to win the Melbourne Cup

The biggest date on the racing calendar is just around the corner and hitting cinemas next week is a film about the first woman to win the Melbourne Cup. 

Just in time comes the story of the first female jockey to win one of the richest horse races in the world.

Is there really any point making a film on either side of the Tasman that doesn't star Sam Neill? 

This role couldn't be more perfect for him, playing Paddy the Payne patriarch who moved his horse-mad family from Hawera to Australia in the '80s.

His youngest of ten is Michelle. And this is her story and theirs.

Actor-turned-director Rachel Griffiths brings a light touch full of heart to proceedings, casting Payne's real-life brother and master horse strapper Stevie as himself lending the story a deep authenticity

Obviously this film has much to say about the male-dominated world of racing and what it took for a driven young woman to fight her way through with her eye always on the prize but there's much more to it than just that and very, very watchable.      

Genuinely inspirational on many levels, this film was a surprisingly emotional ride on and off the track with another pitch-perfect outing from our national treasure Sam Neill.  

Four stars.


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