Matt Montada’s review published on Letterboxd:
Let me first start off by saying that there is still quite a few things to admire about First Cow. The performances from the two main leads are pretty solid and make for very authentic portrayals of people as opposed to characters. It’s also very nice to look at from a visual perspective and i give kudos to the cinematographer for making this film looks as beautiful as it is. Also, i did find the first half of the film to be pretty investing from a storytelling perspective.
BUT... sadly that’s where all the positives end.
Sadly, this suffers from a similar problem as Green Room where the second half of the film makes it lose its overall steam and makes for a sluggishly paced film with no payoff by the end, a flimsy script, and a story that takes a complete 180 and turns into a complete bore, especially when it came to all the scenes with the landowner. Why couldn’t the rest of the film be about these 2 men, the friendship they form with each other, and the business they create by using this cow’s milk? Why did he have to waist time on the landowner (along with generic, one-dimensional, cartoonish henchmen) trying to figure who milked his cow? I ask this since it (to me) feels completely disconnected from the film’s story and themes. Was there a specific message that the film was trying to convey to the audience? Does it actually tie into the film’s themes in some way? Was there any reason at all to even care about this particular plot element? Please share your thoughts and have a nice, light-hearted discussion about it in the comments section because there is clearly something i’m not understanding here.
Anyways, First Cow was yet another film from 2020 that i unfortunately couldn’t appreciate as much as others and makes for yet another disappointment from this dry year for film.