Midnight's Redemption by Steve Sherman | Script Revolution

Midnight's Redemption

An outcast horseman and an abused racehorse win their way into the richest race in the history of the sport but to win they must defeat the man who nearly destroyed them both.



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Jarett Randall (15) is about to drive the family's prized trotter, Jett’s Express, in the second heat of a County fair race at Goshen Historic Racetrack. Jarett did well in the first heat but not well enough for his father, Jack. When Jarett points out that Jett’s Express may have injured himself in the first heat, Jack berates and humiliates his son publicly. Jack demands his son do as he is told. In the second heat Jarett and his horse go down in a wreck, Jarett has a broken leg and the horse is euthanized.

At home, Jarett begins to abuse his pain medications and eventually faces off with his father about the race. Jarett leaves home on a downward spiral, drinking away his pain, going from job to job and race track to race track until he finds himself living in the barn shed row at Buffalo raceway.

At Buffalo Jarett crosses paths with Midnight Express a brother to the horse that died five years earlier but Midnight is dangerous to be near and in bad shape due to Jack’s savage training methods. Jarett forms a bond with Midnight and recoups the horse to health but Midnight trusts only Jarett and will not allow anyone near; causing him to be sent to the butcher.

Believing he was unable to save Midnight, Jarett tries to commit suicide but is discovered and saved by Rebecca. Rebecca brings Jarett to her father’s farm where Midnight is now stabled. Jarett and Rebecca become co owners of Midnight and the team is unbeatable charging through win after win and becoming a contender on the road to the one million dollar Hambletonian cup but the road leads back to Goshen where Jarett must face his past and compete against his father. During the race, Jack’s ruthless driving tactics almost cause catastrophe for Jarett and Midnight. After the race, Jarett physically confronts his father. Jack lodges a formal complaint and Jarett is suspended. Now ineligible to drive in the Million dollar race; Jarett must make a driver change. In a preliminary race at Buffalo Midnight refuses the starting gate and is scratched. All is lost. At home, Jarett receives word his mother has been diagnosed with cancer.

At the hospital Jarett savagely blames his father. Back at the farm, Jarett and Rebecca have a heated argument. Jarett's raging temper startles Rebecca; she falls down a flight of stairs and is hospitalized in a coma. At Rebecca's bedside Jarett promises Rebecca he will never become his father. The next day Rebecca regains consciousness.

At the Hambletonian Society breakfast press conference Rebecca and Jarett are given a letter to bring before the racing board and at the eleventh hour Jarett’s license is reinstated.

In the first heat of the Million dollar race, Jarett and Midnight make a bad break but finish fifth, just qualifying for the second heat. Jarett must quickly adapt to the racing techniques of the big mile race track at The Meadowlands.
Jarett and Midnight are roughed up the second heat but are able to win, beating Jack at the wire. This win results in a three horse race off for all the money but Midnight does not appear sound and flashes of the past haunt Jarett as he must decide whether to draw Midnight form the race off or go for it. In the drivers lounge before the final heat, Jack fulfills his wife's final wish to mend fences with his son. Jack helps Jarett see clearly. Jarett races Midnight in the most exciting race off and photo finish seen on film. Jarett and Midnight are triumphant.

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2017 Austin Film Festival second rounder

Submitted: September 16, 2019
Last Updated: December 2, 2019

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The Writer: Steve Sherman

I grew up in Dutchess county New York about 75 miles north of NYC. My family bought a farm and opened a Horseback Riding Stable in 1965 and I became a barn hand and a trail guide, by the age of ten I could handle any horse you threw at me. I shod (put horse shoes on) my first horse at the age of fifteen. By the early 1970's we switched to racing and breeding Standardbred horses. I graduated from Arlington Central High School in 1979 and continued within the Standardbred horse racing industry, working for the top horsemen in the Northeast. I became a professional trainer-driver by the age of 21 and won my first pari-mutual race at Monticello raceway that same year. I opened my own public... Go to bio
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