Okay, first off, one of the reasons I had to give this movie 4 stars was because in the commercials they boasted "based on a true story", yeah, well, based on a very loose, not even factually backed up true story. There are myths of Hidalgo, there are tales and stories and a few mentions of him in some foreign documents, but there is NO evidence that a race called the "ocean of fire" (or whatever it was called) ever existed.
Secondly, another thing weighing this movie down is the fact that it was directed by Disney. Now, don't misunderstand me, Disney has come out with a few good (even great) movies. "Remember The Titans" is one of my favorite movies of all time, but I think that if "Hidalgo" had been done by a different studio, it would have been more enjoyable, and a little less overly dramatic. I mean, come on, okay, it's possible that someone could outrun a sandstorm and hide out in an abandoned city of ruins, but it's not likely, and the chance of you actually being alright is slim-to-none.
With that out of the way, "Hidalgo" is initially a fun movie starring Viggo Mortensen whom was absolutely fabulous in "Lord Of The Rings". In this movie, Mortensen is pretty good. The visuals of the film are stunning and Omar Shareef is magnificent. The problem is, the story wanders all around the desert, all over... everywhere! And yet, of course, the main character still comes out on top at the end of the movie. Umm, okay, but I highly doubt this is the way things went down, if any of this is factual or not. Needless to say, if it was, the director took some 'artistic license' to make it more fun for the viewers. Right, *cough*, artistic license. Haha. I don't know, there's just something about the combined effect of this movies melodrama and the fact that the supposedly true story may be false, that creates an atmosphere that's just difficult to get into, and ultimately makes "Hidalgo" a regrettably forgetable movie.