A24 had an incredibly strong 2019 thanks to films such as “The Souvenir,” “The Farewell,” “The Lighthouse,” “The Last Black Man in San Francisco,” and “Uncut Gems,” among other titles, and now the popular indie studio and distributor is set to begin the new year on a high note with the upcoming release of Kelly Reichardt’s “First Cow.” The intimate character drama is Reichardt’s first release since 2016’s “Certain Women.” “First Cow” world premiered to critical acclaim at the 2019 Telluride Film Festival and also screened at NYFF.
“First Cow,” based on the novel “The Half Life” by Jonathan Raymond, is set during the 19th Century and stars indie mainstay John Magaro as a skilled cook who joins a group of fur trappers in the Oregon Territory. The cook befriends a Chinese immigrant (Orion Lee) and the two collaborate on a successful business, although its longevity is reliant upon the participation of a nearby wealthy landowner’s prized milking cow.
IndieWire senior film critic Eric Kohn gave “First Cow” a rave review out of the Telluride Film Festival last year, calling Reichardt’s latest a “sweet and tender buddy movie.” “Reichardt has crafted a wondrous little story about two friends roaming the natural splendors of the Pacific Northwest,” Kohn writes in his A- review. “The appeal of this hypnotic, unpredictable movie comes from how they find that place through mutual failure, and the nature of that outcome in the context of an early, untamed America has rich implications that gradually seep into the frame. Reichardt excels at communing with natural beauty and humankind’s complex relationship to it, but ‘First Cow’ pushes that motif into timeless resonance.”
“First Cow” is one of two indies A24 has set for release this March. “First Cow” will be followed by “Saint Maud,” Rose Glass’ psychological horror movie starring Morfydd Clark. The studio also has new films from Janicza Bravo (“Zola”), Kogonada (“After Yang”), Joanna Hogg (“The Souvenir Part II”), and Sofia Coppola (“On the Rocks”) expected to debut in 2020.
A24 will release “First Cow” in select theaters beginning March 6. Watch the official trailer in the video below.