First Cow

First Cow ★★★★

Reichardt, contemporary cinema’s preeminent examiner of the American West, returns with a tender period drama that’s as meticulously crafted as anything she’s done. A gentle, low-key story of male friendship (strains from Old Joy) and entrepreneurship in the Old West that showcases Reichardt’s exquisite regard for landscapes, everyday tasks (biscuit baking!), clothing, living spaces, and the like. Not sure I’ve ever seen the wet greenery of forests in the Pacific Northwest filmed so splendidly; it verges on magical realism. If the past is any indication, I’ll come up on it upon a rewatch.

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