SPIRIT UNTAMED*CUT TO THE CHASE*
NOTE: This spoiler was submitted by Jeremy
The film opens at a show with Jim Prescott (Jake Gyllenhaal) watching his wife Milagro (Eiza Gonzalez) perform her trademark horse stunt along with their daughter Fortuna, AKA Lucky. Tragedy strikes when Milagro is involved in an accident that claims her life during one of her performances.
Years later, Lucky (Isabela Merced) has been living with Jim’s sister Cora (Julianne Moore) at the home of Grandpa James Prescott Sr (Joe Hart), who is up for election for senator. Unfortunately, Lucky, who is prone to mischief, causes trouble in her grandfather’s home after a flying squirrel she befriended goes all over the place and causes a disaster, leaving James humiliated.
Lucky and Cora head to the town of Miradeiro where they will stay with Jim for the summer. Lucky hasn’t even really known her father after the incident with Milagro. While riding on the train there, Lucky sees a herd of wild horses roaming freely outside, led by a mustang that catches Lucky’s eye. She tries to go outside the train to get a better look at the horses, but she nearly falls off the train until she is saved by a man named Hendricks (Walton Goggins) and brought back to a frantic Cora.
Upon arriving in Miradeiro, Lucky and Cora don’t find Jim at his office. Meanwhile, Hendricks, seemingly charming and friendly, is actually the leader of a group of horse wranglers, and he and his crew have their eyes set on the horses that Lucky noticed. When Lucky and Cora go further into town, Lucky is impressed with a team of women riding their horses for a crowd. One of the women notices Lucky and recognizes her as Milagro’s daughter. Among the riders is a young girl named Pru Granger (Marsai Martin), who has her own horse, Chica Linda. Walking further, Lucky and Cora are stopped by a little boy named Snips (Lucian Perez), who tries to trick them into paying him to ride his donkey to get to Jim’s home. Snips is stopped by his older sister Abigail Stone (Mckenna Grace), who also has her own horse, Boomerang, and subdues her trickster brother before introducing herself to Lucky and Cora.
The two make it to Jim’s home, where he is elated to see his daughter. Lucky then sees Milagro’s old room, including all the memorabilia from her performing days. She then goes near a corral where she meets Pru and then sees the mustang from earlier being manhandled by Hendricks, who is using the spurs from his boots to forcefully control the horse until he throws Hendricks off his back. Pru’s father Al (Andre Braugher) comes to tell Hendricks and his men to leave the horses alone.
Lucky tells Jim and Cora about the horse, thinking he can be her new friend, but Jim doesn’t want Lucky going near the horses after what happened to Milagro. This causes a slight rift between Lucky and Jim. She goes out by the corral anyway to try and get closer to the horse, but he doesn’t like going near anybody. Pru and Abigail help Lucky win over the trust of the horse, whom she names Spirit after seeing how wild he is. After a while, Spirit trusts Lucky enough to eat an apple she offers him, as well as allowing her to pet him, but it takes a while for him to let her ride him. Hendricks observes and thinks he can use this to his advantage.
Lucky attempts to ride Spirit, and he busts through the corral. Snips goes to get Jim and Al while Pru and Abigail ride their horses to go after Lucky and Spirit. They make it to a cliffside where Lucky is thrown off as Spirit leaps across the gap, but she is caught by Pru and Abigail. Jim finds her and scolds her for disobeying him. They go home arguing, with Lucky thinking that Jim has given up on her. Jim laments to Cora that he is trying to do his best, while Lucky sneaks out at night.
Lucky goes into the forest, where she finds Spirit and his herd together. The other horses appear to warm up to Lucky, but the moment is cut short when Hendricks and his men ride in and being to lasso the horses together and take them in, all except Spirit. The horses are boarded into a train. Spirit joins Lucky as they ride back to the corral and enlist the help of Pru and Abigail. While Abigail is willing to go off, Pru is hesitant because she knows how dangerous it is and because her dad will kill her if the wranglers don’t. They eventually all agree to try and cut the wranglers off on their path by beating them to Heck Mountain.
The girls and their horses embark on the perilous journey. They make it to a bridge that collapses when Chica Linda takes a step onto it, but Abigail and Boomerang manage to find a way across. When Lucky and Spirit go for it, they fall down into the crevice, but Spirit manages to ride them out. The girls then come across another precarious ledge, with Lucky nervously grabbing onto Spirit’s mane, but she remembers something her mom told her when she was a baby (“Stay fearless”), so she lets Spirit go, and they are able to cross safely. The girls set up camp for the night and bond over marshmallows. Meanwhile, Al finds that the girls are gone, and he gets Jim and Cora to help find them.
In the morning, Lucky wakes up and sees that the wranglers’ train has made it to its stop earlier than expected. She wakes up the others to give chase. Spirit goes off on his own and is taken in by the wranglers. Lucky hops on Boomerang with Abigail, and they all follow the train to the docks where the wranglers are boarding the horses onto a boat to be auctioned off to be worked to death. The girls are too late to stop the boat as it sets sail, but Lucky rides Spirit toward a bridge that allows him to leap off after running fast enough and make it onto the boat. Lucky and Spirit free the other horses and subdue the wranglers, with Spirit knocking Hendricks off the boat. Jim, Al, and Cora all show up to get the girls. Hendricks emerges and tries to go after Lucky, but Cora hits him with a paddle and Lucky lassos him so Spirit can drag him onto the shore, where he and the other wranglers are arrested.
On their way back to Miradeiro, Lucky feels that she has to let Spirit go so that he can stay with his herd, and so she can return home where she belongs. The two part ways.
Just as Lucky and Cora prepare to head back home, they both decide to stay in Miradeiro with Jim. Pru and Abigail are happy to hear this, but Abigail tells Lucky that if she is going to stay in town, she will need a horse. Lucky smiles, and we see Spirit riding through the fields with his herd, implying that he and Lucky will soon reunite.
The adventurous young Fortuna "Lucky" Prescott arrives in the town of Miradeiro with her Aunt Cora to stay with her father Jim, who left Lucky to be raised by Cora after the tragic death of Lucky's mother Milagro. In town, Lucky befriends Pru Granger and Abigail Stone, but she is most taken by a wild mustang that she names Spirit.
A team of horse wranglers led by Hendricks steals Spirit's herd from the forest, so Lucky recruits Pru and Abigail to help her and Spirit save them. With their own horses, the girls go on a perilous journey that leads to a showdown on a boat where Lucky and Spirit help free the horses from the wranglers, leading to Hendricks and his men getting arrested.
Lucky parts ways with Spirit because she feels that he should be with his herd, and since she is preparing to go back home with Cora. However, she and Cora decide to stay in Miradeiro, and it is implied that Lucky will be reunited with Spirit.