Past Film/Video | Contemporary Screen

First Cow

(Kelly Reichardt, 2019)

Three people cross a river by bridge. In between them a cow pulls suitcases and luggage. They approach the show where three other people wait for them.

Wexner Center favorite (and past Artist Residency Award recipient) Kelly Reichardt trains her perceptive and patient eye on the Pacific Northwest, this time evoking an authentically hardscrabble, early 19th-century way of life in one of 2020's most acclaimed films.

A taciturn loner and skilled cook (John Magaro) has traveled west and joined a group of fur trappers in Oregon territory, though he only finds true connection with a Chinese immigrant (Orion Lee) also seeking his fortune. Soon the two collaborate on a successful business, although its longevity relies on the clandestine participation of a nearby landowner’s prized milking cow. From this simple premise, Reichardt constructs an interrogation of foundational Americana with a sensitive depiction of male friendship and a mounting sense of suspense. (122 mins., DCP)

Reichardt’s history with the Wexner Center goes back goes back to 2004, with a residency in the Film/Video Studio. The relationship has continued through multiple visits to introduce various films, a 2015 Artist Residency Award to support her film Certain Women, and a 2017 retrospective of her films that featured an in-person appearance.

See the complete ICYMI: Recent Releases on the Big Screen lineup.

"If only every film could achieve the sublime tenderness of First Cow."
Karen Han, Polygon
Three people cross a river by bridge. In between them a cow pulls suitcases and luggage. They approach the show where three other people wait for them.

First Cow | Courtesy of A24

Two men in a forest in the midst of a confrontation

First Cow | Courtesy of A24

A cow sits on a barge floating on a river in the midst of vibrant landscape of trees and bright yellow and orange leaves on trees surrounding the lake.

First Cow | Courtesy of A24

Two bearded men stand in front of a cabin.

First Cow | Courtesy of A24

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Past Film/Video

First Cow