First Cow

First Cow

First Cow

John Magaro (The Big Short) and Orion Lee (A Brilliant Young Mind) are 19-century fur trappers out to make a fortune in this American drama from Kelly Reichardt (Old Joy), based on co-writer Jonathan Raymond's novel, The Half Life.

"A taciturn loner and skilled cook (Magaro) has traveled west and joined a group of fur trappers in Oregon Territory, though he only finds true connection with a Chinese immigrant (Lee) also seeking his fortune; soon the two collaborate on a successful business, although its longevity is reliant upon the clandestine participation of a nearby wealthy landowner's prized milking cow." (New York Film Festival)

2020121 minsUSA
Drama

First Cow / Reviews

Screen Daily

Screen Daily

Perfectly made, perfectly acted and ultimately moving - a melancholy memory in miniature, a Daguerreotype of a distant time that may be more like our own than we know.

Full review
IndieWire

IndieWire

King-Lu and Cookie need each other...and First Cow commiserates with their journey in a kind-hearted fashion that allows the movie to resonate with more warmth than it initially lets on.

Full review
Hollywood Reporter

Hollywood Reporter

While not a lot happens in First Cow by the standards of most two-hour narrative films, and some may wish for a less open-ended conclusion, the drama's rough-edged lyricism kept me rapt the entire time.

Full review
Variety

Variety

Reichardt specialises in pared-down narratives, sometimes stripping away so much that boredom sets in. "First Cow" may be lean, but it offers ample room to ruminate in the comparison between its two time periods.

Full review
Slant Magazine

Slant Magazine

The sense of a nascent community rising up out of the primordial muck is palpable, so it's unfortunate that John Magaro and Orion Lee's characters ultimately feel outside it all.

Full review