Alumna Katarina Docalovich (BA ’19) attended the 57th New York Film Festival, and wrote a review of Kelly Reichardt’s First Cow For Filp Screen – an organization whose mission is “…providing an outlet for diverse voices in film and film journalism.”
Check out her work below-
The original version of this article was published courtesy of Flip Screened
In 1820s Oregon, Cookie Figowitz (John Magaro), a soft-spoken cook, has been hired by fur trappers as they make their way through the frontier. The trappers, hungry and exhausted, are indifferent toward him at best, abusive at worst. Cookie is a wanderer without a home or a family to speak of; that is, until he finds fellow wanderer King Lu (Orion Lee) on the run one night in the woods and offers him a place to sleep for the night, no questions asked. Cookie parts ways with the trappers, and the two men embark together on a risky but lucrative financial baking project that involves stealing milk from a cow belonging to a rich, more “civilized” British landowner (Toby Jones). Of course, this is no ordinary cow. You guessed it, it’s the first cow ever introduced to the region, making it very valuable to all parties involved. For them, there is a reason to cry over spilled milk. Cookie uses the stolen milk to bake “oily cakes,” which King, the sales half of the duo, makes instantly popular.
The bond between Cookie and King is what makes the film so special. They passively share their dreams; King wants to start a farm, Cookie a bakery or a hotel. Although they both technically depend on each other in order to make money, they are never solely in it for that reason. Cookie and King are outsiders who understand each other and just want to make a living without doing the degrading, low paying, often dangerous work that the people at the top rely on in order to make their fortunes, an idea that viewers today can still identify with.
Read the full review here!