Cow Who Sang a Song into the Future

Nominee
Grand Jury Prize ~ World Cinema Dramatic
Sundance Film Festival
Mysterious and elegiac. A tale of warning about a collapsing ecosystem and about deep family wounds.

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The Cow Who Sang a Song into the Future

A choir of creatures introduces a world delicately constructed by fantasy, mystery, and magical realism in Francisca Alegría’s poignant and stunning debut feature. It begins in a river in the south of Chile where fish are dying due to pollution from a nearby factory. Amid their floating bodies, long-deceased Magdalena (Mia Maestro) bubbles up to the surface gasping for air, bringing with her old wounds and a wave of family secrets. This shocking return sends her widowed husband into turmoil and prompts their daughter Cecilia (Leonor Varela) to return home to the family’s dairy farm with her own children. Magdalena’s presence reverberates among her family, instigating fits of laughter and despair in equal measure with all but Cecilia’s eldest child, who finds much-needed comfort in their grandmother’s love and unconditional understanding during a time of transition. A lyrical rumination on family, nature, renewal, and resurrection, The Cow Who Sang a Song into the Future is an ambitious proposal for acceptance and healing, suggesting that the dead return when they are most needed.

“A beautifully eerie and resonant tale about motherhood and the natural world… Solidly grounded, teeming with thought-provoking ideas, wonderfully atmospheric, and often
visually striking.” – Jonathan Holland, Screen Daily

“Hauntingly moving and hopeful…A folkloric tale that uses magical realism as a way to connect the intimate story of a family suffering from generational trauma with a timely environmentalist fable.” – Rafael Motamayor, IndieWire

"An intimate story about one family and a vast story about the Earth...Feels like the arrival of a totally new voice." – Drew Gregory, Autostraddle
Not Rated
Genre
Drama
Runtime
93
Language
Spanish
Director
Francisca Alegría
Writer(s)
Francisca Alegría
Cast
Mia Maestro, Leonor Varela
Awards:
Nominee, Grand Jury Prize ~ World Cinema Dramatic, Sundance Film Festival
FEATURED REVIEW
Rafael Motamayor, indieWire

The fish are dying from pollution, the bees are disappearing, and the milking cows are not far behind, not unlike the beginning of Douglas Adam’s “Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.” And like the 2005 adaptation of the book, the lamentations of the animals is presented in song form, with the fish and ...

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