Under the Spell of Horses

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Released 4-May-2010
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Visually stunning series on traditional uses of horses around the world

Under the Spell of horses is a beautifully shot 4 part series that explores the ancient relationship of horses and man. In Morroco, once a year the royal city of Meknes is transformed into an oriental military-style camp. The arena right in front of the city wall is flanked by large team tents at the sides, decorated halls made of ivory-coloured canvas or Bedouin-style black felt. Two thousand curious onlookers gather round the square. More than five hundred riders are expected to take part in this major Fantasia, a warlike display of horsemanship. Argentina breeds and exports the most horses in the world and nowhere else has such a rich and diverse horse culture. The film gives the viewer a glimpse of three very different worlds: the gauchos in the pampa, the exclusive polo scene and the daily fight for survival of the "Cartoneros", the rubbish collectors in the gigantic city of Buenos Aires. In India, each year in November, the small, barren desert oasis of Pushkar is transformed into a place of pilgrimage for millions of Indians. Everybody who is anybody on the horse scene in Rajasthan ó Maharajas, breeders and horse masters ó meets at the Pushkar Mela, the turbulent market for over 50,000 horses and camels. Pushkar is also the place where the legendary Marwaris are bought and sold. Iceland, the biggest volcanic island in the world, is famous for its horses. On the edge of the Arctic Circle we meet the family Goroarsson and see their work with horses. In summer, when the days neither begin nor end because it never gets dark, they drive most of the horses up to the highland pastures where the animals have complete freedom. 3 months later itís time for "rettir", when they are driven down again. During that time the family prepares for the great horse ride to the glacier.

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