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Dakota's Summer

Where to Watch Dakota's Summer

PG
2014

Dakota's Summer, directed by Timothy Armstrong and starring Haley Ramm, Bryan Dechart, and Glynn Turman, is a heart-warming family film that blends the cultural elements of the Old West with the timeless struggles of self-discovery, family, and the evolution of personal identity.

The 2014 movie tells the inspirational story of Dakota Rose (played by Haley Ramm), a 17-year-old trick rider who performs in the Sweethearts of the Rodeo, a highly skilled all-girl rodeo group. Dakota is a successful and talented rider with a steady life and family in Texas, but her world turns upside down when she discovers deep hidden secrets about her adoption. Struggling to comprehend this newfound information about her past, Dakota embarks on an introspective journey of self-discovery filled with emotional challenges, personal growth, and unexpected relationships.

Dakota's journey begins when she reluctantly spends the summer in the Black Hills of South Dakota, hoping to find her roots and gain some clarity about the secrets that have been kept from her. Almost as a symbolic representation of her internal struggle, Dakota's confidence as a trick rider is shaken. She is unable to perform the same tricks she once did effortlessly. If she's going to continue her career, Dakota needs to regain her confidence and learn how to blend her passion for horse riding with her evolving personal journey.

Adding depth to the story is Dakota's relationship with her supportive family, played by Keith Carradine and Emily Bett Rickards, whose love and care for Dakota remains steady, even through the rocky revelations. Though she feels lost and betrayed, Dakota starts to understand the sacrifices her family made for her, demonstrating that love is often exhibited in the form of difficult decisions and actions.

As the film progresses, Dakota encounters new relationships that help her reconcile with her past. She meets a charming cowboy named Bryce (played by Bryan Dechart), who becomes a guide in her journey. Aside from offering rodeo support, Bryce provides a sort of emotional anchoring for Dakota, whose world has been rocked by the recent revelations. In Bryce and his Native American grandfather Austin (played by Glynn Turman), Dakota finds a unique sense of wisdom, experience, and understanding that she needs to cope with the tumultuous changes her life has undergone. Through these characters, 'Dakota's Summer' touches on themes of cultural diversity in the backdrop of rodeo tradition.

Glynn Turman's character, Austin, lends a fascinating layer of depth to the story through his Native American heritage that enriches Dakota's learning about her own cultural background, horse riding, and the symbiosis of human spirit with nature's vitality. The film does an excellent job in unfolding not just Dakota's individual journey but that of cultural intersections, fostering respect, mutual understanding, and unity among diverse heritages.

The cinematography of Dakota's Summer is also worth mentioning. Filmmakers have artfully captured the raw beauty of the Dakotas alongside the vibrant and inimitable energy of the rodeo, making for an exceptionally American coming-of-age story. The movie doesn't shy away from showcasing the hard work, dedication, and sheer grit required for life in the rodeo.

Despite its Western setting, Dakota's Summer subtly embodies universal struggles known to any teenager: identity issues, the desire to belong, the confusion of growing up, and the inevitability of change. The film is also an ode to the empowerment of young women who bravely face emotional turmoil, showing resilience in the face of adversity, while also coming to terms with their unique identities.

Even though the film is centered around rodeo life, viewers don't need to be rodeo fans to enjoy or understand Dakotas's Summer. At its core, it is undeniably a story of self-discovery and resilience, showcasing the importance of embracing change, accepting oneself and understanding the complexities of family, heritage and individual growth.

In Haley Ramm's heartfelt performance as Dakota, viewers can expect to see a nuanced portrayal of a young girl grappling with change and coming out stronger. With a strong supporting cast and a story that will draw in both children and adults, Dakota's Summer is an impressive blend of feel-good entertainment and soulful storytelling that will leave audiences emotionally satisfied and inspired.

Dakota's Summer is a Kids & Family movie released in 2014. It has a runtime of 90 min.. Critics and viewers have rated it moderate reviews, with an IMDb score of 5.6..

How to Watch Dakota's Summer

Where can I stream Dakota's Summer movie online? Dakota's Summer is available to watch and stream, buy on demand, download at Amazon Prime, Apple TV Channels, Peacock, Tubi TV, Apple TV, Google Play. Some platforms allow you to rent Dakota's Summer for a limited time or purchase the movie for downloading.

5.6/10
Director
Timothy Armstrong
Stars
Haley Ramm, Keith Carradine, Emily Bett Rickards, Marin Hinkle, Julie Ann Emery, Bryan Dechart, Spencer Boldman, Leslie-Anne Huff, Glynn Turman
Also starring Bryan Dechart
Dakota's Summer is available on .