This Australian family film told the story of a young country girl called Jenny Grey (played by 18-year-old Cathryn Harrison, daughter of actor/singer Noel and granddaughter of Rex) who falls in love with a horse.
The film has a very limited plotline: Jenny loves horses. Her father (Lloyd Cunnington) – who was widowed as the result of a riding accident – hates them. Father sends Jenny away to boarding school in Melbourne. Jenny gets a job as a stablehand in the racing stable of McIntyre (Peter Cummins), tames a racehorse, gets fired, loses her horse, buys a horse. The end.
There’s a nasty piece of work (Gary Waddell) sneering around the stables, mock-Italian landlady Mrs Gianini (Marion Edward), and a nice clean-cut boy-next-door type called Barry (one-time Aussie pop star heart-throb Mark Holden in his first feature film role).
There are lashings of rural activities, including early-morning track work and racecourse atmosphere at Caulfield caught by Vince Monton’s camera.
Being low on content, having no climax to speak of, and not much drama or suspense on the way to it (unless you count flat-hunting and job-seeking as dramas), Blue Fire Lady is inclined to longwindedness.
The editing is atrocious, often violating continuity, and in spite of some good scenes around the stables and the racecourse, the film is consistently bogged down by actors who seem to be reading the script for the first time. It’s certainly no National Velvet.
However, Cathryn Harrison carries the unobjectionable piece well with friendly smiles and passable riding.
The horse, Blue Fire Lady, was played by a real racehorse called Unique Princess.
Mr Alan Grey