Taking the Reins (2021) Movie Script

Oh, yes!
It's just that was
a really hard jump
and she just cleared it.
- That's good then?
- It's great.
So she just has to get through
the next round
without any faults,
and then she gets a ribbon.
I'm sorry, I get a little
carried away with this stuff.
Oh, no problem.
So do you ride?
- I used to.
- Used to? Why'd you stop?
No reason.
I just stopped.
And your online profile
says that you're a writer?
I am.
I write for "Compass" magazine.
- Oh, yeah, I read that.
- Really?
Yeah, have you written
anything I'd know?
Well, I did a piece
on the history
of personalized dinnerware.
Okay, I did another story
on therapeutic macrame.
- I don't think I saw those.
- Well, now you'll never know
the difference between
a square knot and a half hitch.
Here we go.
Okay, there she goes.
- Bad luck.
- Bad luck?
Yeah, I mean,
she almost made it.
People train their entire
lives for this.
They give up their friends.
They give up their social lives.
They give up anything
that isn't about winning.
So I wouldn't exactly
call it... luck.
I didn't mean to say
that there wasn't
some skill involved.
I'm sorry.
- It's okay.
- No, I'm sorry.
I get a little carried away
with this stuff.
- Let's change the subject.
- Okay.
- Let's talk about you.
- Okay.
So, how long have you
lived in the city, David?
Actually, it's Paul.
You know, honey, we would
really love to see you.
You're overdue for a visit.
I know. I'm sorry.
I miss you, too.
How's Dad? Alex?
We have some big news.
Guess who's hosting
the championships this year.
We didn't want to tell you
until we knew for sure.
But the Northeastern
are going to be held
right here at Meadowbrook.
That is huge news!
That's incredible.
Who's riding?
Isn't it tradition for the host
to have a rider
in the competition?
And that would be your father.
Dad is riding?
We're gonna have the best in
the country competing right here
on the very course
where you used to ride.
- How is he feeling?
- Is he ready?
- Oh, hang on.
- Oh, no, it's okay.
It's Sam.
Hi, Dad.
Hey, Sam.
Congrats on the event.
- Yep.
- Are you prepped? Ready?
Getting there.
Well, who are you riding?
- Rascal.
- The new horse.
I can't wait to meet him.
Well, that would require
you coming home.
Yeah, I gotta go
check on the horses.
- Okay, honey.
- Bye, Sam.
- You do... you do that.
- Bye, Dad.
- He's got a lot on his mind.
- Yeah.
I mean, well, you know,
he hasn't competed in years.
I'm sure he would love
to have you here
cheering him on, honey.
In person.
Depends on work.
Speaking of,
I have to get to sleep.
I have a big meeting
in the morning with my editor.
- Okay.
- Well, love you, honey.
I love you too.
Good night, Mom.
How you doing, Rascal?
Want a little dessert?
There you go.
Yeah, that's my boy.
Oh, my boy.
You can really be
an old bear sometimes.
What are you talking about?
I'm talking
about you and Samantha.
Bonnie, come on. You know
I don't like that video stuff.
It's not personal.
So what was your excuse
when she came home
in person last Christmas?
Or Easter weekend?
Or her birthday?
Bonnie, we don't have a whole
lot to talk about, that's all.
Well, you could have told her
what's going on.
Why do I have to do it?
She should hear it from you.
Am I really an old bear?
But you're my old bear.
I wouldn't have it
any other way.
But that due time,
don't make it past due.
You too?
- Samantha.
- Yes?
I don't have much time today,
- so we'll make this quick.
- Kay.
It's about your travel story.
- Yes?
- No.
- No?
- Not for the cover.
Look, Samantha, you have talent.
I could see that when you
were a freelancer for us.
And I brought you on
as a staff writer
because I believe
in that talent.
And I really appreciate that.
But "Compass"
is a lifestyle magazine.
And our readers want to feel
that the stories
are coming
from your own experience.
I guess I just
felt like they were.
They're very well constructed.
You're an excellent writer.
But your stories don't feel
as if you've lived them.
That makes it difficult for our
readers to connect with you.
My mother is famous
for her dinner parties.
So I am very well versed
in personalized dinnerware.
That felt very real to me.
But therapeutic macrame...
I can see how that
might not be a home run.
For anyone.
Can I give you a little advice?
If you want to make the cover,
bring me a story
that only you can write.
Bring me a story
with Samantha in it.
- Okay.
- Okay.
What do you mean?
- Are you okay?
- I'm fine.
I'm just trying
to find some empathy.
- Okay.
- Got it.
You have a wall.
You write from your head,
not your heart.
And if you can find a way
to break that wall, well,
then I believe you can deliver
a cover-worthy story.
Okay, thank you, Amanda.
I will get started on the...
my wall right away.
I feel really good about this.
- We're done here.
- Yeah, yes.
Okay. Thank you.
You need some more room?
You need some more?
You good, Shadow?
You're gonna break his heart,
you know.
You're not gonna come by
and say hello?
I am so sorry, Shadow.
Please forgive me.
Working on anything new
at the magazine?
As a matter of fact, I am.
I just don't know
what that is yet.
Well, I'm sure you'll
figure something out.
Won't she, Shadow?
You sure do have
a way with horses.
Yes, I do.
Thank you, Chauncey.
Thank you, Shadow.
Not a problem.
Have a good day, Sam.
That's very exciting.
I can't wait.
Yeah, that'd be terrific.
All right, I can't wait
to see you.
Drive safely.
Love you.
Is Sam coming home?
Your sister
is writing an article
about the Northeastern
Championships for her magazine.
How long's she gonna be here?
A couple of weeks, I think.
You guys have told her,
haven't you?
About Luke?
Not in so many words.
Right, dear?
I mean, she can just
find out when she gets here.
It'll make for a nice surprise.
Most people know
they don't surprise someone
with their ex-husband.
That went well.
I should warn you, Samantha.
I have very high expectations
for this article.
Well, I am just really happy
that you're interested
in the story.
Equestrian events are elegant,
expensive, and iconic.
They're perfect
for the "Compass" brand.
Even for the cover?
We can talk about that
after you submit the story.
Keep your receipts.
Will do.
Thank you so much, Amanda.
Is something different
with the blueberries?
I think it makes
a world of difference.
- I will be right with you.
- Ashley.
- Hi.
- Oh, my gosh.
- Samantha, hi.
- How are you?
So good. How are you?
I don't think I've seen you
since... Fairfield?
- Has it been that long?
- I think so.
Some days I barely remember
I even went to college.
- Do you work here now?
- Kind of.
I own the place.
I bought it from Ed Crawford
- last year.
- That is amazing.
- Congratulations.
- Thank you.
So what brings you to town?
You moved to New York, right?
Yes, writing assignment.
I am doing a story
on the championships
- at my parents' place.
- That's exciting.
I have to ask.
Ed used to make these insanely
delicious cinnamon rolls?
Yeah, I had a feeling
you were gonna ask about them.
I have the recipe.
- I will take a half a dozen.
- Coming up.
They're just out of the oven.
These... these pictures
are beautiful.
Who took these?
Actually, I did.
They're really beautiful.
You have such a good eye.
- Really?
- Yeah.
Thank you.
One day, I just picked up
a camera and started shooting.
Figured I was never gonna
do anything with them,
so I figured
I'd just decorate the place.
That's Luke.
Luke Travers.
We used to be married.
Right, yeah, of course.
I... I knew that.
I bumped into him at the park
and I snapped it there.
It's a really nice shot of him.
Order's ready.
- Thank you.
- You're welcome.
On the house, Sam.
- Really?
- Yeah, of course.
Thank you so much.
Say hi to your mom
and dad for me, okay.
I will, I will.
Good to see you.
- Bye.
- Yeah, bye.
I want the larger tent
on the north lawn,
lights along all the walkways
in the perimeter.
And let's set up both bars
on opposite sides
of the east lawn.
But I don't want it
too close to the edge.
Did you all get that?
Okay, good.
'Cause I don't want anyone
falling off the edge.
Excuse me.
- Hi, Mom.
- You're early!
Well, for once,
traffic was actually good.
I'll just get my stuff later.
It's so good to see you.
It's so good to see you too.
In person.
I mean, that face camera thing
is all right
every once in a while,
but I like to hug my baby.
I know, me too.
Okay, I have your room
set up for you.
I hear footsteps.
I thought I heard you
driving in.
How's my favorite sister?
Well, since I'm your
only sister,
I'll say that I'm great.
I am so glad that you're here.
- Me too.
- Mom and Dad too.
- Dad said that?
- Of course not.
Though he might
have told a horse.
- I'm gonna go see the horses.
- Yeah, yeah.
Hi. Yes.
Hey, Buttercup.
You pretty thing.
Where's the new guy, huh?
Where's Rascal?
They wouldn't tell you
if they could.
Horses keep their secrets.
One of my dad's
favorite expressions.
I've only been here a month,
but I guess
he's rubbing off on me.
- Sorry about that.
- It's okay.
I'm Sam,
I'm the oldest daughter.
It's nice to finally meet you.
They talk about you
all the time around here.
Your dad says you used to be one
of the best riders in the state.
Well, I... I don't know...
She was the best.
Hey, Dad.
Yeah, glad to see you.
Your mother's been looking
forward to this all week.
- So you don't ride anymore.
- No.
I stopped a... a few years ago.
Yeah, it's kind of
a long story, so...
And we got a lot of work
to do, so Matt, come on.
Trucks arrive tomorrow
to start setting things up.
Pretty exciting, though?
Having the championships here.
It is at that.
See you at dinner.
It was nice to meet you, Sam.
Yeah, you too.
I don't know.
Let me check on that
and I will call you back. Bye.
Hey, Alex, would you take
these up to Sam, please?
She's not up there.
She just went out
to the stables.
- I meant to tell her.
- You should have.
But since you didn't,
let's go tell her now
so I can be there for it.
Hi, buddy.
I've waiting to meet you...
Luke, what are you doing here?
What do you mean?
I mean, what are you
doing here, Luke?
Nobody told you, did they?
Told me what?
Your dad hired me to
train him for the competition.
I'm the new trainer.
- Sam, wait.
- What?
Is that all you're gonna say?
What else do you want me to say?
I don't know.
Something more than "What?"
This whole entire thing
has caught me
completely off guard, Luke.
Okay, for real,
nobody told you I was here?
- Nope.
- Okay. Then I apologize.
I mean, when your mother told me
that you were coming up here
to write your article,
I just, I don't know,
I assumed that somebody
would have told you.
One would have thought, right?
Okay, it's my fault.
My fault, I'm afraid.
I was planning
on telling you but...
- She chickened out.
- I didn't chicken out, no.
I did not chicken out,
thank you.
I was just waiting
for the perfect moment.
Turns out there is none.
Can I have a word with you
in private, please?
Oh, no. Oh, no.
Sir, excuse me.
I would like to speak
to you too.
Do either one of you
care to explain to me
what my ex-husband
is doing here?
Look, I don't need to tell you
it's been years
since I competed.
You're not around to ride.
So I had no choice
but to step in.
And I need somebody to help me
who understands our horses.
And that's Luke.
Look, seriously, Sam, if
this is gonna be a problem...
- I told them to tell you.
- You could have told me.
What do you not understand
about a sidebar?
Thank you.
Okay, Sam, look.
I'm sorry.
We should've told you.
We just didn't think
you were coming home.
And then when you did, I...
I didn't know how to tell you.
And the truth is we need Luke.
You know how important
this event is.
And the best trainer
in the whole state
just happens
to be your ex-husband.
Yes, of course I know
how important this event is.
And Dad, I want you to win.
- It's just two weeks.
- I...
But if this really, really,
really, really
is difficult for you,
we'll just call
the whole thing off.
Mom, it's too late for that.
I mean,
hundreds of people are coming.
You and Alex
have worked so hard.
Look, we are both adults.
Like you said,
it's just two weeks.
If he can do it, so can I.
- Thank you.
- You're welcome.
Thank you.
Now, if you will excuse me,
I think I'm going to go
upstairs and unpack.
- One... I do one thing well.
- There we go.
There she is.
Took a minute to settle in.
Let me guess, you over-packed.
Like that time
we went to Hawaii.
You say over-packed,
I say prepared.
So you had no other
dinner plans tonight?
None that compared
to your mother's yams.
Since when did you
start liking yams?
When I had them the way
your mom prepares them.
- Thank you, Luke.
- Of course.
So how is the training
going for the championships?
Well, Luke thinks Rascal
has a real shot at the win.
Yeah, he is a solid contender.
So you guys are just
out there, you know,
running the course
over and over and over again?
Well, yes and no.
I mean, Preston
loves the repetition.
Because it works.
Right, Dad?
Yams, please.
But this time, he has agreed
to a mixture of training.
Repetition and learning
the value
of forming an emotional
connection with your horse.
Here we go again.
Yeah, and that horse
this time is Rascal,
who is taking to it very well.
And the more time I spend
with them, the better they get.
You know, I find that
just doing the same thing
over and over and over again
without having an emotional
connection doesn't really work.
I would say if there's
an actual emotional connection,
then you don't need to learn,
you just know.
And... and how would one know
if the other one
doesn't let that one in?
Well, how is anyone
supposed to know anything
when the other
just keeps walking away
when things get sticky?
Talking about horses, of course.
- Yeah, me too.
- Of course.
Can someone pass me the yams?
Yeah. Here you go.
- Thank you.
- Sweetie, brussels sprouts.
That's terrible.
- Hi.
- Hi.
You still up?
Trying to write unsuccessfully.
Well, dinner was fun.
That's why I'm here.
I do want to apologize...
For not telling you about Luke.
They shouldn't have
ambushed you like that.
It wasn't fair.
Funny but not fair.
No, it wasn't.
Thank you.
I appreciate the apology.
But Dad really
does need Luke, so...
you know how good he is.
I know how stubborn he is.
I forget how much you two
push each other's buttons.
Does he have dinner here a lot?
Yes, all the time.
I keep telling Dad
he should just
put a kitchen
in the carriage house.
I'm sorry, what?
You are the gift that
keeps on giving aren't you?
Yes, please come
inside my humble abode.
Did you... what,
are you living here now too?
Know what?
You look like you need a drink.
What happened
to our old place, Luke?
No, that place
stopped being ours
a long time before I moved out.
Don't do that, don't deflect.
Okay, you know what?
This whole thing, here?
Me living here?
This was your dad's idea.
Because, I don't know, I'm just
working here 100 hours a week.
But maybe it makes
too much sense.
I'll just go, okay?
Great. Great. Just walk away.
'Cause you know what?
Things got sticky.
Sam, what do you want?
Stay or go?
Because I'm not a mind reader.
I never have been.
I want you to want to stay here
and figure this out with me.
- You want that drink now?
- Yes.
You kept Winston.
I couldn't bear
to part with him.
Do you remember how we would
just snuggle ourselves onto him
and watch movies for hours?
Yes, I do.
I also remember returning
a very expensive,
super comfortable couch
that your parents gave us
for our wedding just...
just so we can...
we can hang on to this guy.
So, yeah.
How are we gonna do this?
How are we supposed
to peacefully coexist
living next door to each other
for the next two weeks?
I don't know.
Good, good, good.
Keep your leg on.
That first one was beautiful.
Good, good, just like that.
When we go to the show,
I want it just like that.
He's great, isn't he?
Takes those fences
with confidence.
Not too showy.
Graceful, effortless.
I think he's got
a real shot at this.
It's a beautiful horse.
I was talking about your dad.
You think he could
really do this?
I mean, it's been a long time.
Most men his age have
already hung up their boots.
But with his experience
and that horse,
I do think anything can happen.
Really do.
You looked good out there.
For a man...
For what?
A man of a certain vintage.
Dad, are you sure about this?
You could fall,
you could get thrown off.
I... I could also win.
Of course, you could take him
through the course if you want.
I've still got your old saddle
in the tack room.
I'm afraid it's gonna
have to stay there.
- Yeah?
- Yeah.
I gotta get back to work.
She could've made
Nationals, you know.
- Maybe even the Olympics.
- Yeah, I know.
Think she'll ever ride again?
That's up to her.
- One more, come on.
- Yeah.
Let's go.
This first fence, go with him.
That goes to the back
of the house. All right.
And that goes to the west side.
Thank you.
And we need to make sure they...
No, no, no, no, no.
Wait, wait, that goes
to the kitchen.
The kitchen, please.
Get a load of this.
Your mom is amazing.
She is running this place
like an army general.
The championships
get a lot of attention.
Mom and Dad are definitely
stepping up their game.
You know they're getting
the awards banquet
- catered by the Stone Hearth.
- What's that?
You don't know what
the Stone Hearth is?
- Sorry, no.
- It's like a really amazing
restaurant in the city.
It's got great food.
Good atmosphere.
Sounds like a perfect date spot.
See ya.
Did he just ask me out?
- Writer's block?
- Yes.
Let's go get a drink.
- Thanks, Nick.
- Thank you.
Appreciate it.
Well, the real question is,
what do you want to do?
Well, if I knew that
I would probably be doing it.
Well, have you thought
about going back to school?
So I can get another degree
that I'm not going to use?
Yeah, that's true.
I just feel like
I'm spinning my tires, you know?
Maybe you should talk to Dad.
- Our dad?
- Good point, yeah.
No, he still thinks
I'm his baby.
Like he cannot understand
why I would want to do anything
other than balance the books
at the family business.
Is that Matthew, the new guy?
I mean...
What is this?
Do you like him?
He kinda, sorta,
maybe not really,
asked me out today.
I'm gonna need you
to elaborate on that.
Okay, so I was talking up
Stone Hearth.
And then he said that it sounds
like the perfect date spot.
Like, that's what
that means, right?
Sister, the boss's daughter
might be a conflict of interest.
I'm working all the time.
So if I can't meet somebody
in my backyard,
- where am I supposed to meet 'em?
- No.
Tell me.
Hey, there's Luke.
That is an interesting
new development...
I'm sure it's nothing serious.
It's fine, it's fine.
We're not married anymore.
He is free to live his own life.
He is.
I just don't know why he has
to live it in this bar.
I mean, honestly.
There are so many places to go.
Well, not within
a 26-mile radius.
But like, drive, you know?
Can I have two more
glasses of wine, please?
- Hey.
- Hey.
Didn't think I'd see you here.
I saw you.
That's Ashley.
- She bought...
- Black Walnut, yeah, I know.
I'll take another, please.
Hey, I'm happy for you.
Ashley's really nice.
Oh no. No, no, no, no.
That's not what it is.
We've been on a couple of dates.
It's... no, it's not serious.
Serious enough to put
your picture on her wall.
What about you?
I definitely took
your pictures down from my wall.
Not what I meant.
Are you seeing anyone?
Here and there.
Nothing serious.
Music's good tonight.
I miss that.
- What do you miss?
- Nothing.
No, no, no, no, no,
no, no, no, no.
I'm not gonna let you do that.
What were you gonna say?
I miss, you know, us...
Like that.
I'm sorry.
I'm... I'm sorry.
I mean, I shouldn't, 'cause
you're on... I just... it's...
It's weird being here with you
but not being with you.
And... and the last time
I danced like that was...
Before we broke up.
I don't remember it
being a "we."
Sam, I just...
I just didn't know
how to help you find
what you were looking for.
That's all.
Hey, it's okay.
You know, we were young.
We couldn't expect
to figure each other out
when we barely knew ourselves.
Well, talking about it
kind of helps.
I thought I tried.
I mean,
I just felt like you
didn't want to listen.
Well, it's hard constantly
feeling like
you're failing the person
that you love, you know.
I never said that.
I never said you failed.
I know.
But you never really said
I succeeded either.
Anyway, I should go.
And, enjoy your evening.
- That's so true.
- You have such a good memory.
That horse was like clockwork.
He would know exactly what time
she got home from school.
He really did.
We can't put the
Bevels with the Warner Smiths.
They aren't speaking
after that unfortunate
tree trimming incident
last spring.
- Forgive me.
- Let's move 'em over here.
Good morning.
Are we planning a dinner party
or invading New Hampshire?
A little bit of both.
Good morning.
- Late night?
- Nope.
Your mother was just telling us
about your first horse.
Yeah, I still miss Midnight.
Talk about
an emotional connection.
You used to ride him
without putting your feet
in the stirrups.
I forgot about that.
I liked the freedom.
Just the two of us
riding for fun.
Yeah, but her father
didn't think so.
We used to hear him yelling
at her from up at the house.
"Put your feet
in those stirrups, young lady."
I didn't sound like that.
- Did I?
- Absolutely.
It was a little dangerous,
but it wasn't the worst thing
I could've done.
No. No, it wasn't.
Well, I better go wash up.
Good morning, everyone.
You all have some fun.
Good morning, indeed.
- Kinda harsh on you.
- That's my dad.
Everyone says he has
a hard time with emotions.
But he doesn't have
trouble reminding me
of how I let him down.
- How's your article going?
- It's not.
It's not at all, no.
I finally have this chance
to write something
that could get attention,
and I just...
I can't get started.
My editor told me to my face
that I have a wall between
my head and my heart.
And if I could just
break through it,
then I could deliver
a cover-worthy story.
You think I have a wall?
I think
you're your father's daughter.
See, I don't want that.
I don't want that,
I have to figure this out.
Okay, then what can I do
to help?
Maybe I just need to reconnect
a little bit, you know?
Just refresh my memory.
Get my hands dirty.
Or we could get
your hands clean.
You like a bath,
don't you, Wally?
So how do you do it?
How do I do what?
You know, that
horse whisperer thing you do.
Well, horses
are not complicated.
You, not so much.
Come on now, really?
No, with horses,
you just got to listen.
More than just with your ears.
You got to listen
with your hands.
You see... here, give me this.
Now, get a feel for him.
See how his leg feels.
Feel those ribs.
See how he moves
when he wants to talk to you.
And then take a step back
and use your eyes.
And you watch how he moves
and you see what he wants
and how he goes after it.
And then... boom.
He has told you
everything he needs.
So why do
you think he's doing this?
- Who, Preston?
- Yeah.
I mean, you said yourself,
most men his age
would have quit by now.
runs in your family.
I mean, you should know that
more than anybody else.
Because on... on a show day,
when you would be getting ready,
you would get
that look in your eye.
That one right there.
And watch out.
Every move, every jump,
just gotta be perfect.
All right, let's rinse him.
Okay, let's rinse you.
- Where'd you go just then?
- I was just thinking...
He's telling us what he needs.
You better... no!
No! No!
All right, I give,
I give, I give, I give!
All right.
- We're almost there, I promise.
- Where are you taking me?
We're in Massachusetts now.
Don't worry about it.
- Just watch out for the cliff.
- Stop.
Okay, two more steps.
- One, two.
- One, two.
Class is over.
This is
your graduation ceremony.
You know I don't ride anymore.
No, I know you don't
compete anymore.
But this...
this is just for fun.
And it's good for your soul.
And, you know
what the best part is?
- Hi, buddy.
- You don't have to do it alone.
Hey, Rascal.
Ready? Come on, Jake.
So, what do you say?
Let's just ride.
All right.
How's it feel?
It feels... familiar.
I'll tell you what.
Why don't we just take it easy?
Let you get used to it again.
How's that sound?
Yeah, sounds good.
There she goes.
You wanna go get 'em?
Let's go.
Hey, Preston.
You might want to come see this.
Look at them.
- I'd hoped this would happen.
- Yeah.
That was fun.
Almost forgot
how much I love this.
You know, I was sad
when I hear you quit.
Must've been a tough
decision for you,
and I thought about calling,
but I had just broken up
with you a month before...
So that was out the window.
Yeah, fun times.
But I'm ready to listen now.
I was competing upstate.
Literally face down
in the dirt in front of
some of the best equestrians
in the country.
I get up,
I get back on Midnight.
Dad calls me over.
Barks, "Your head's
not in the game."
- Well, I've heard that.
- Yeah.
He was right.
Our marriage had just ended,
and I was heartbroken.
And I was supposed
to focus on winning?
The thing is, it wasn't just
him that expected perfection.
- It was everyone.
- Yeah.
The business of winning
had become bigger
than the love of the sport,
so I quit
and put my journalism degree
to work.
Sometimes we gotta
step away from something
- to see how much we love it.
- Yeah.
I think we really do.
Is it too late to say I'm sorry?
I was just a trainer,
married to the daughter
of such an established family.
It was, I don't know,
it was intimidating.
Noted trainer.
Not back then.
No, back then,
I was just starting out.
You know, I had to work.
I had no safety net.
I didn't have the support
that you did.
You know, my parents
did the best they could.
And I'm sorry
for not telling you enough
how great you were.
- No.
- Yeah, because you were.
Even then.
I guess I wasn't the only one
who had the pressure
of perfection, huh?
And then we just...
We just grew apart faster
than we grew up.
We should...
I don't think
this is a good idea.
Definitely not.
I think we should head back.
Yeah, I think you're right.
Where have you guys been?
I've been looking for you.
Why? What's going on?
Dad's hurt.
- Hurt?
- Come on.
I was just getting
Rascal some hay
and I didn't expect
all the extra bales
to come tumbling down on me.
So just keep icing it.
- Keep it elevated.
- Got it.
- Thank you, Doc.
- You're welcome.
It's great to see everybody.
Good to see you.
Thank you for coming.
This should go on the inside.
The doctor said the outside.
Thank you so much,
we really appreciate it.
I mean, when my dad
sets his mind to something,
there's nothing stopping him.
Well, it's just a sprain.
Your dad's a tough guy.
- Yeah.
- He just needs some rest.
Do you still think
he'll be able to compete
in the championships next week?
He conveniently neglected
to mention that small detail.
It's probably because he knows
you'll tell him, "No."
I've learned through the years
that your dad's gonna do
what your dad's gonna do.
But he needs
to stay off the horse.
The thing is, Sam, your mom
and dad are getting older.
Even with your sister here,
this farm's a pretty big
It's good to see you, Sam.
Yeah, it's good to see you too.
- Call me if you need anything.
- Thank you so much, Doctor.
Dad, where you going?
Work out Rascal.
I got a schedule.
Well, don't you think
you need to rest?
We got a competition coming up,
in case you haven't heard.
Doctor D said you need to rest.
Well, Doctor D is entitled
to his opinion.
Why are you doing this?
- Doing what?
- This.
The... the competition.
You have a room
full of trophies.
Do you really need another one?
I haven't won recently and
putting our family name
on a blue ribbon
would bring some
real value to this farm.
are you thinking
about selling this place?
I wasn't gonna tell you or Alex
until after we decided but...
Your mother and I
have talked about it.
We're gonna sell Meadowbrook.
I'm sorry.
Come on.
Stay up.
No, stop worrying about it.
- Let your hands be easy.
- I can't get my balance.
Okay, then listen
to what I'm telling you.
It's just not gonna work.
I'm leading with the wrong hand,
my balance is off.
No, you're thinking
about it too much.
Focus, stay centered.
Okay, maybe your arm
will be ready by showtime.
"Maybe" is not gonna
get us a win.
If I want the best price
for this place,
the Barclay name has gotta
end up in first place.
I know. Okay.
What about you, Luke?
Do you think you could do it?
No, no, no. Listen, Preston,
you know I would do anything
for Meadowbrook
but I am a trainer.
I am not a rider.
I am.
you don't have to do this.
Dad, you've been
trying to get me
back on a horse for three years.
- Well, yeah, yeah, but I...
- I'm not gonna stand by
and watch you get hurt
any more than you already are.
I do not know where you get
this stubborn streak from.
- Okay, listen.
- Yep.
First time around the course.
Take it easy.
Let Rascal get to know you,
Okay. Don't worry about us.
Rascal and I are becoming
good buddies, aren't we?
All right, ready?
Hey, let's go.
I'm serious,
don't do anything crazy
and do not try any jumps.
I can't hear you.
She's not gonna listen, is she?
You're the one who married her.
What do you think?
Yeah, she's gonna jump.
Yeah, buddy.
There you go, Sam.
Nice and easy.
Easy, easy.
That's it, Rascal,
show her the way.
She's riding again?
Yes, yes, she is.
What do you say, Rascal?
Let's do this.
Okay, what are you doing, Sam?
She's not going to do
that jump, is she?
- Sam, do not do it.
- Never does what she's told.
Don't do it, Sam.
Don't do it, Sam.
Hey, hey, hey.
I got you.
Hey, you okay?
- I got you.
- Thank you.
Honey, are you okay?
Yes, I'm fine. I'm fine, Mom.
This is why I told you
not to attempt that.
- You are out of practice.
- Apparently.
Sam, really?
What were you thinking?
I was thinking
that I have less than a week
to get ready
for the championships, Dad.
And I can't do this without you.
What do you say?
Wanna train me?
Well, that depends.
Are you gonna listen to me?
I'm sorry, come again?
Did you say
you're competing in the event?
I did.
But I thought
you gave up riding.
I did.
I guess sometimes
you have to step away
from something to realize
how much you love it.
And now you think
you found it again?
I think maybe I have.
Well, I did tell you to put
yourself into the article.
And now you are actually
riding the horse.
You really know
how to take a note.
All right, keep working at it.
Send me updates.
Will do, thank you.
I don't need thank you's.
Just write me a good article.
And make sure
to get great photos.
We're going back
to basics now, okay?
Heels down.
Keep straight.
And listen, you can take it...
a little bit more.
Not too much.
He'll feel you.
Just trust him.
They say once you
fall off a horse,
you have to get right back on.
Let me assure you,
this is not
as easy as it sounds.
You gotta get out of your head.
You got to start to feel
this is a partnership.
The Northeastern Championships
are one of the most elite
and anticipated
horse events in the country,
and they're happening
in my backyard.
And now,
it's up to me to win it,
with my grumbling father,
my ex-husband-turned-
and a horse that lives up
to his name, Rascal,
all by my side.
Do it again.
Now, being trained
by your ex-husband
is... complicated.
It takes a whole lot of courage
and an incredible amount
of patience and trust.
You have to be clean
if you want to qualify.
Little more, about six inches.
My mother and sister
have designed and delivered
a beautiful event.
Now it's up to me to win it.
The thing is,
no one can do this for me.
You can have the best trainer
in the state,
the most athletic of horses,
and a sideline of loved ones
cheering you on.
That was nice.
But at the end of the day,
it's up to me to make that jump.
So how do you actually
get back on a horse?
You just do.
- Hi.
- Hi.
Your mom ordered these.
I told her
I would drop them off.
Thank you.
- Thank you.
- Can I give them to you?
Sam, about the other night...
Don't worry about it.
Oh, well, I have been.
All week.
I should have at least
said hi or something.
It was just so awkward.
- But honestly, it's okay.
- Okay.
Well, the truth is,
I have been on
a few dates with Luke.
But it hasn't really worked out.
He mostly just talks
about you, really.
I'm so sorry about that, I...
Don't be.
Everybody knows that Travers
is still in love with you.
Everybody except you,
Okay, I should get back
to the bakery.
It's a... it's a one-woman band
over there.
Enjoy. Say hi to your mom.
Hey, Ashley,
do you remember the article
I told you I was writing
for the magazine?
Yeah, of course.
I would love to talk to you
about your photographs.
The banquet tent is up.
I just don't know if the
centerpieces are big enough.
I'm sure they'll be fine.
- Are you okay?
- Yeah, I've been thinking.
Samantha is doing
such a good job out there.
It's like she never quit.
I'm just so proud of her.
Have you told her that?
She doesn't want
to hear it from me.
That is where you are wrong.
You're exactly the one
she needs to hear it from.
She's doing all of this for you.
You old bear.
The least you can do
is tell her
that you appreciate it.
She knows that.
Why does everybody have to
talk about everything?
Don't make
the same mistake again.
Let your daughter
know how you feel.
That's up to you.
Old bear.
You're still out here, huh?
Almost finished.
It's a lot of paperwork.
- Yes?
- I wanted to tell you that
your being here,
your taking care
of all this stuff, it...
it means a lot.
It means a lot to me.
Well, thanks, Dad.
I have to get
inside and help your mother.
That was such a great shot.
Are you getting some fun things?
I'm getting everything.
I'm having the time of my life.
Thank you for having me here.
- It really means a lot to me.
- Me too.
I'm so happy you're here.
I'm so happy too.
Go, I'll get pictures
of everything.
- Have fun.
- Thanks.
Why won't he just ask me out?
If you like him so much,
why don't you just ask him out?
Well, I don't know
if I like him enough
for me to ask him out.
Well, sister, I don't know
what to tell you, okay?
- Are you either in or...
- Those are supposed to be
amuse bouche... hang on.
- Well, hello.
- Hello!
What are you doing here?
You look amazing.
Thank you, so do you.
Well, when I read
your email updates,
I couldn't resist.
So I commandeered
the company car
and here I am.
I live for this.
If you capture even half
of this event in your article,
it will make me look very good.
And I really like to look good.
Yeah, well, I just want to
deliver a great article for you.
- You got this.
- Thank you.
Vigo, Amanda Carter,
"Compass" magazine.
Look at you.
You spent pretty much
our entire marriage
trying to get me to dress up,
so I figured today
I would dress up for you.
Well, you look very dapper.
- Feels good, feels right.
- Yeah.
Hello, everyone.
Welcome to
the Northeastern Championships.
This is our first year
to host this event,
and we are thrilled
that you are here.
First, I have to say
that none of this
would have been possible
without my wife
and my extraordinary daughter,
Now, as many of you know,
or you can see here,
I'm not able to compete
in tomorrow's event.
So Meadowbrook Stables
is going to be represented
by somebody I care about
and also love dearly,
our eldest daughter, Samantha.
As many of you know,
Sam left the horse world
several years ago
to pursue other interests.
So we're... we're very glad
that she stepped in
and we're happy
to have her home.
Well, please, eat, drink
and have a wonderful time.
Enjoy yourselves.
Today is all about pleasure.
Tomorrow is about winning.
Excuse me.
Five, six.
How you feeling?
I never thought
I would be back here.
But you're pretty lucky.
'Cause not everybody
gets a second chance.
That's true.
Are you still in love with me?
Are you still in love with me?
It was never
a question of love, Luke.
It... it wasn't, it was
a question of everything else
but never love.
- There she is.
- What's so funny?
Nothing, nothing.
I just know you too well.
- Oh, you do, huh?
- Yeah. I do.
Like what's going on inside
that head of yours right now
is... is... is
you are writing a novel
about all of the things that
could possibly go wrong here.
You... you have spreadsheets
and... and checklists
of every disaster that could
possibly happen here.
"Are we together? Are we not?
Should we do this? Should we
stop while we're ahead?"
- Yes!
- And I just... I just...
I don't want to repeat history
either, I really don't, but I...
I just want you to stop
thinking for a second.
Because right now,
the only thing I can think about
is how much I want to kiss you.
Good afternoon and welcome
to the Northeastern
Equestrian Championships.
The best riders in the country
are here in Meadowbrook Farms
to compete for the blue ribbon.
The competition is
unbelievably stiff this year.
All the competitors here
are good enough to win
but it will take a special rider
to get a clean run
on this course.
The excitement of completion day
can be felt throughout the crowd
as our riders get ready
for their first round.
This is Meadowbrook's
first year hosting the event,
but the Barclay name
is no stranger
to the show jumping world.
Good job.
Please take your seats
as we welcome the judges
and the competitors.
Our reigning champ,
Charlotte Anderson,
riding Hunter
is really the one to watch here.
Samantha Barclay riding Rascal
is stepping in for her father
after an injury.
Samantha is a well-known
championship rider,
known for her consistency
and composure.
Each rider will have 55 seconds
to complete the first round
and only the top scorers
will be able to continue
to round two
for a chance at the ribbon.
Another beautiful jump
from Charlotte,
who seems to be
on her game today.
I spoke too soon.
That's her first bad jump.
She follows up that mistake
with a good recovery jump.
Two more perfect jumps
as she finishes her first round
with only one fault.
A fan favorite, Rusty,
starts out with a strong run.
He is an incredibly
strong and fast horse.
Rusty lands badly.
That'll cost him some points.
He does have trouble
with his turns,
sometimes not giving himself
enough space for the lead-up.
And a run-out for Rusty.
Unfortunately, it looks like
that will disqualify him
for round two.
Our next rider, Samantha Barclay
from our host stables
here at Meadowbrook.
She's riding Rascal.
In order to continue
to the next round,
Samantha and Rascal will need
to have under four faults.
And there they go.
Beautiful first jump.
One vertical down,
which is okay, as long
as she doesn't get in her head.
Lovely turn and another
clean jump for Rascal.
Not a great run
for Samantha and Rascal
but it looks like
it'll be good enough
to make it to round two.
But she certainly will have
her work cut out for her.
It's just one fault.
She can make it up
in the next round.
- Absolutely, she's fine.
- Right.
Buddy, it's not you, okay?
It's me, it's me.
All right, let's go.
Come on.
All right,
we're gonna take a short break,
and we'll be back with
our final event of the day.
Thanks, Matthew.
Dad, I am so sorry.
I want to win this for you.
I... I just...
I feel like
I'm letting you down.
I think for someone
who's been away for so long,
you're doing
just fine out there.
I know you want me
to be this great equestrian,
and I feel like I'm just writing
stories about it in a magazine.
Come with me.
Come on.
I want to show you something.
Dad, when did you start smoking?
I don't smoke.
Just open it.
It's my... my articles.
Yeah, I got stories in there
from your student newspaper,
that magazine you used
to write for locally,
even got the first...
first one you got published
when you moved to New York.
This is everything
I've ever written.
You even have my paragraph
on personalized dinnerware.
There's one about macrame
in there too.
Which, do not tell your mother,
I enjoyed.
I can't believe
you saved all of this.
You wrote it, I read it.
Why didn't you
ever say anything? I...
All these years, I just...
I thought you were
disappointed in me.
Sam, I could never be
disappointed in you.
Sad, maybe, but not...
not because
you gave up the sport.
Because maybe I felt like
that you gave me up.
All those years of training,
driving across
the country to competitions,
they're the best years
of my life.
Do I like to win?
Yeah, of course.
But spending
all that time with you
is what I cared about most.
Dad those were...
those were some of
the best years of my life too.
I just needed time to...
to find my way,
but... you were never gonna
lose me.
I know I don't say
this enough, Sam.
At... at... at all, really.
I'm so proud of you.
I always have been,
always will be.
You're following your heart
and you're doing
what makes you happy.
That's all a parent
could ever ask for.
I love you.
I love you so much.
All right. Now, it's time.
I'm afraid I'm not doing
a very good job for Meadowbrook.
I want you to forget
about the competition.
I want you
to forget about winning.
- I... I'm sorry, what?
- That... that's right.
I want you to forget everything
I ever told you about winning.
I want you to remember
why you loved the sport
in the first place.
I want you to get out there,
I want you to ride Rascal,
and to have some fun.
And a beautiful round
for Charlotte and Hunter.
With only a one-fault total,
it will keep her in first place.
Yep, up. All right.
Here we go.
Thanks, Matthew. All right.
Let's just have some fun,
buddy, okay?
And our final competitor
for the event,
Samantha Barclay and Rascal.
They had some trouble
in the first round,
so they will need a completely
clean ride to land in first.
Off to a strong start.
Great pace.
Beautiful leaps.
She needs to stay in it
as she approaches
the trouble jump.
The turn looks tight.
Perfect speed.
- And clear.
- Yes.
She did it!
What a run
for Samantha and Rascal.
And that is what
we call a winning ride.
She's a star.
- Congratulations.
- Thank you.
Good job, buddy. Good job.
- Okay, everyone, big smiles.
- All righty.
Eyes up here.
Everyone say, "Rascal".
I just love the look
on Sam's face here.
- So determined.
- These are exquisite.
You have real talent.
I don't know about all that.
- I'm just taking pictures.
- I would. It's my job.
Editor-in-chief, Amanda Carter.
"Compass" magazine.
- We need to talk.
- We do?
Hey. Hey,
there's someone
I'd really like you to meet.
- Who?
- This is Jared.
My boyfriend.
It's nice to meet you, Jared.
- Nice to meet you too.
- Jared, this is Alex.
Alex runs the books around here.
Actually, she runs
everything around here.
She does an incredible job
at it all.
Thank you for saying so.
I love this song.
Come on, let's go dance.
- Bye.
- Bye.
- This is good.
- Yeah?
- Have you tried it?
- No.
But I picked most of it out.
Then you've got great taste.
- I'm Scott.
- I'm Alexandra.
Do you want to dance?
- You know what?
- Thank you, thank you.
It was all her, it was all her.
- Good training, good job.
- Thank you so much.
Well, that's gotta feel good.
I didn't do it for the win.
- But yeah, it feels kinda good.
- Yeah.
I did it to make
- my parents happy.
- And that you did.
You knocked it out of the park.
You were terrific, sweetie.
- Terrific.
- Thank you.
Your mother and I would like
to run something by you.
We've spoken to Alex,
and she's onboard.
We have decided not to sell.
Dad, I am...
I'm really relieved.
I know how much work
this place is to keep up with,
but I just... I couldn't
bear letting it go.
I still want to step back
from the business a bit.
Well, we're taking
a vacation actually.
We need a little bit
of much needed us time.
That's fantastic.
Where are you going?
- France.
- Mexico.
Who's gonna watch the stables?
Your dad has promoted
your sister to general manager.
Alex! Come here.
- Congratulations.
- Thank you.
- If this is what you want?
- It is, it is.
The more I thought about it,
the more I realized
how much I love this place.
And I'm gonna get a raise.
And a new car.
It's a win-win.
Now if you'll excuse me,
I have to go see
a man about a dance.
Obviously, Alex can't
run the place alone.
It's a two-person job.
So we need somebody who knows
the horses and how we work.
Dad, I...
this has been so much fun,
and I'm so grateful
that you got me back on a horse
but I love my job.
Not you.
We can work out
the details later,
But we would like to offer you
the job permanently.
First of all, thank you.
I mean, that means
the world to me. It does.
I... I just don't think
I could take that position
without Sam's blessing.
I can't think of anyone
better for this job.
Well, I am honored,
and I promise you
I will take good care
of the place.
You better take care
- of more than just this place.
- Dad!
- Just covering my bases.
- Okay, honey,
- why don't we go dance?
- Now?
Come on, you old bear.
- Okay, well...
- Look at you.
How about you?
Are you gonna ask me to dance?
Luke Travers,
would you like to dance?
I thought you would never ask.
Come on.
You pleased with yourself?
Sometimes people just need
a nudge in the right direction.
Do you think she knows?
Well, knowing our daughter,
Do you think she cares?
I think she's happy.
- And that's all that matters.
- That's true.
- France.
- Mexico.
You don't think they were trying
to get us back together, do you?
Would it be that bad?
Good thing you kept Winston.
It's out!
Already got mine.
But I want you
to sign it for me, okay?
Wait, I don't have a pen.
I don't have a pen!
And you call yourself a writer?
There you go.
Thank you.
Thanks, babe.
Of course.
- All in?
- All in.
Where to, folks?
Let's just ride.
Walk on.
There we go.
And for those readers out there
wondering how this story ends,
well, I'm afraid
I don't really know.
But I will tell you one thing.
I believe in second chances.