FIRST COW
2020, A24, 121 min, USA, Dir: Kelly Reichardt

A taciturn loner and skilled cook (John Magaro) has traveled West and joined a group of fur trappers in 19th-century Oregon. He finds a kindred spirit in a Chinese immigrant (Orion Lee) and soon the two collaborate on a successful business - although its longevity is reliant upon the clandestine participation of a wealthy landowner’s prized milking cow. From this simple premise Reichardt constructs an interrogation of foundational Americana that recalls her earlier triumph OLD JOY in its sensitive depiction of male friendship yet is driven by a mounting suspense all its own.


PHOTOGRAPH
2019, Amazon Studios, 110 min, Germany/India/USA, Dir: Ritesh Batra

Two lives intersect in Mumbai and go along together. A struggling street photographer (Nawazuddin Siddiqui), pressured to marry by his grandmother, convinces a shy stranger (Sanya Malhotra) to pose as his fiancée. The pair develops a connection that transforms them in ways that they could not expect. “Writer-director Ritesh Batra’s first Indian film since his debut feature has the same quiet streak of wistful sentimentality that made THE LUNCHBOX so globally beloved … Batra’s filmmaking has remained markedly consistent in tone and texture: You’d be hard pressed to find anyone making nicer films in world cinema right now.” – Guy Lodge, Variety.


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