In the last week of January 1917 (that is, 106 years ago this week), a young man raced through brutal winter weather and rough terrain to finish a 500-mile dog sled race from Winnipeg, Canada to St. Paul, Minnesota. This week’s film is (very loosely) based on that race.
Seventeen-year-old Will Stoneman is thrilled when he’s accepted to college, but reluctant to leave the family farm, and doesn’t want to burden his family with the cost. Still, his father encourages him to go. But when his father suddenly dies in an accident, Will is devastated. Not only will he be unable to afford college now, but his family may lose their farm.
A glimmer of hope comes in the form of an upcoming dog sled race with a prize of $10,000, more than enough to save his farm and pay for college. (Adjusted for inflation, that’s over $200,000!) But the journey will be exhausting and perilous, and he’s racing against seasoned professionals. Still, he’s being driven by more than just his dogs. He’s got the memory of his father, and his own “iron will” keeping him going.
Iron Will is a family-friendly underdog story exploring the power of determination and the virtue of persistence. It’s rated PG, but does include some mild violence.
Runtime: 1 hour, 48 minutes
USCCB rating: A-II
IMDb Parents Guide