First Cow: Opening Night Film (2020)

  • Feature
  • Drama, Comedy
  • 2h 2m
  • Directed by Kelly Reichardt
  • English
  • USA
  • Australian Premiere

ONLY AVAILABLE TO WATCH: Thursday 6 August, 7pm AEST

In this stirring film by revered auteur Kelly Reichardt (Certain Women, MIFF 2016; Night Moves, MIFF 2014), an odd couple discover friendship and free enterprise on the American frontier.

Brought together by chance in the untamed landscape of early-19th-century Oregon Territory, an itinerant Jewish chef and a Chinese immigrant soon begin concocting schemes to collaboratively earn a living. The arrival of the region’s solitary cow, owned by an English industrialist, provides the two men with an opportunity for entrepreneurship through the scones they bake and sell with the aid of some ill-gotten milk. But the popularity of their wares may come at a substantial personal cost.

Reichardt is one of the most exciting directors working today, beloved the world over for her minimalistic realism, outsider protagonists and distillation of wider social issues through the personal – all of which are masterfully realised in First Cow, which screened at the Telluride, Berlin, New York and Toronto film festivals to rapt reviews. MIFF 68½’s Opening Night film is a rich, poignant and gently observed tale of male companionship and the mythology of the American Dream.

“The pleasures of First Cow are deep and substantial … A deceptively simple and wondrously subtle new film.” – The New York Times

Presented by Chandon


Kelly Reichardt


Vincent Savino


Neil Kopp


Anish Savjani


Kelly Reichardt


Jon Raymond


Christopher Blauvelt


William Tyler



World Sales: A24 Films

Bonus Content

13 mins
Welcome to Country by Naarm Elder Uncle Jack Charles and Opening Night Speeches
1 mins
Introduction from Kelly Reichardt
25 mins
Post-screening Q&A (spoilers)

Programmer Kate Fitzpatrick speaks to the director of First Cow, Kelly Reichardt.

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