(24 checks | 0 official lists) - Sources: IMDb - ICM
You guys should already know Guan's Cow because I'm not the first to promote this film here. Monty has been pushing this one, but with little result. That's a shame because Cow really is something different.
Like most of Guan's films that is. He's one of those directors that didn't move to the city to make more modern cinema, but is doing his thing in the countryside. The setting is closer to the 90s work of Yimou Zhang, but the look and genre elements are way more modern.
Central to the film is the titular cow, a huge prize beast (apparently with Dutch roots) close to becoming a god in a small Chinese mountain village. Sadly, the little village is overrun by the Japanese which marks the start of an epic journey for the imported animal, although for most of the time it seems largely unaware of all the commotion happening around it. If not for Black Sheep, it could've won the Oscar for most apathetic film character ever.
There's a strange balance of genres at play, floating somewhere between comedy, drama and war, never really settling down on either side.
Visually Cow is a very accomplished film. The gray/blue filter used throughout the film gives it a grim and harsh look, often in sharp contrast with the funkier and even flashy camera work used in certain scenes. Extreme close-ups or wide-lens frog perspectives underline its less than serious overtones.
Full review for Hu Guan's Cow >>