First Cow

First Cow ★★★★★

One of Reichardt’s many talents is the ability to weave a string of tiny serotonin-fueled pleasure moments, one after another, into a giant tapestry of creeping, slow burn social commentary.

The main characters are really playing roles traditionally female. Cookie is not a cow puncher or prospector or gambler or gunslinger. He’s a cook and only because they aren’t any women in this world. When a bar fight breaks out Cookie misses it because he was asked to watch a stranger’s baby in a proto-car-seat-bassinet. When left alone to his own devices he literally decorates King’s ramshackle cabin with a small bouquet of flowers. He discovers King naked. In a forest. Vulnerable, willfully non-toxic, just two guys into each other. Right?

But in a post celluloid closeted world we can have a film that examines the relationship between two men where if the director wanted the characters to be homosexual she can simply take their clothes off and put them into a bed. Instead we have two young single men where the audience will never second guess their connection.

Meanwhile, the production predates the release of Parasite, but the same class questions are raised here (who is really leeching off who?) when the landed gentleman argues that publicly killing one employee is good for productivity of the others. 

The themes are in the pocket, the storytelling is *chef’s kiss* perfect and the execution is just masterful.

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