Keep up-to-date on your favourite artists and movies, track gig and release dates, and join in the conversation.
SEARCH RESULTS FOR
The SWITCHCast team reunites for a special episode to celebrate this year's Oscars! Click here to listen now.x
review, Cowboys, Cowboys, film, movie, latest movies, new movie, movie ratings, current movie reviews, latest films, recent movies, current movies, movie critics, new movie reviews, latest movie reviews, latest movies out, the latest movies, review film, latest cinema releases, Australian reviews, cinema, cinema reviews, Steve Zahn, Sasha Knight, Jillian Bell, Ann Dowd, Gary Farmer, Chris Coy, Bob Stephenson, John Beasley, John Reynolds, Anna Kerrigan, Drama, Queer

COWBOYS

★★★

SADDLE UP FOR AN EMOTIONAL RIDE

MELBOURNE QUEER FILM FESTIVAL REVIEW
LATEST REVIEWS
By Brent Davidson
16th March 2021

How far would you go for your children's happiness? What if it meant risking it all? Your marriage? Your mental health? Your freedom?

I think most parents would say they would go as far as they needed to.

Which brings us to 'Cowboys', an almost coming-of-age film set in rural Montana. Troy (Steve Zhan) is a well-intentioned father and obvious favourite parent to Joe (Sasha Knight), with mother Sally (Jillian Bell) never quite understanding their relationship and having some clear jealousy towards it. Someone's always gonna be the fun parent and someone's always going to be the parent with the rules. When Joe tells Troy one night after some gallivanting in Troy's truck that they are not comfortable in their body and are transgender, Troy in a (somewhat) surprising turn of events becomes Joe's biggest advocate, trying to turn Sally's mind around, and eventually somewhat absconding into the night to live out the ultimate border crossing cowboy fantasy.

'COWBOYS' TRAILER

I said before that this was an almost coming-of-age film, and it's probably time to explain what I mean. When a film has themes of transgender identity it's often the primary focus, they are the character we look to identify and empathise with as they grow into their true selves. While this is definitely the case for 'Cowboys', the same can also be said for Troy, the father figure leaving his arrested development life behind and stepping up (and growing up) to be the father that Joe needs. You could therefore say it's a double coming-of-age film, beautifully crafted side by side - because what's a cowboy without their partner?

The rural landscape is a perfect backdrop for the isolation all the characters feel in their lives, be it Joe, Troy or Sally. The slow scenery is in total juxtaposition with the internal speed they are moving with. I am quite partial to queer stories in rural settings; I'm not sure exactly what it is, but if you think about the impact of films like 'God's Own Country' and 'Brokeback Mountain', the landscape was almost another character within the film. The narrative device of a broken timeline, operating in flashbacks and present day, while done often feels right. It lets us know that although Sally doesn't understand Joe's lived experience, a parent's love will push through. I especially enjoyed seeing Joe become slowly more entranced with the hyper-masculinity of the "cowboy culture" that surrounds him, as well as the denim and plaid that goes with it - it's also why I think the absconding through the mountains on horseback had such appeal, allowing Joe to complete the circle of who he is.

The rural landscape is a perfect backdrop for the isolation all the characters feel in their lives.

'Cowboys' is a delicate, powerful and poignant film. I think I was most impacted by the final scene of the film (no spoilers), but it's a reminder that the innocence and acceptance children have is always a ray of hope against any intolerance and bigotry they may be born into.

FAST FACTS
RELEASE DATE: TBA
RUN TIME: 1h 23m
CAST: Steve Zahn
Sasha Knight
Jillian Bell
Ann Dowd
Gary Farmer
Chris Coy
Bob Stephenson
John Beasley
John Reynolds
WRITER/DIRECTOR: Anna Kerrigan
PRODUCERS: Anna Kerrigan
Gigi Graff
TOP-RATED REVIEWS
The Godmother - Isabelle Huppert's police interpreter turns drug lord
TRENDINGWIN THE GODMOTHERIsabelle Huppert's police interpreter turns drug lord
Cosmic Sin - A film that delivers on the promise of its title
TRENDINGCOSMIC SINA film that delivers on the promise of its title
Death of a Ladies' Man - Relationships, sobriety, and what happens when death comes calling
TRENDINGWIN DEATH OF A LADIES' MANRelationships, sobriety, and what happens when death comes calling
Pocahontas - 25 years later, the colours of the wind are fading
TRENDINGPOCAHONTAS25 years later, the colours of the wind are fading
The Violin Player - Sex and strings
TRENDINGTHE VIOLIN PLAYERSex and strings
Those Who Wish Me Dead - An acting comeback for Jolie
TRENDINGTHOSE WHO WISH ME DEADAn acting comeback for Jolie
Revisiting 'Dark City' 20 years later - The most underrated and influential sci-fi film ever?
TRENDINGREVISITING 'DARK CITY' 20 YEARS LATERThe most underrated and influential sci-fi film ever?
Wet Woman in the Wind - A sexy struggle for conquest
TRENDINGWET WOMAN IN THE WINDA sexy struggle for conquest
25 Free-to-Watch Short Horror Films - The scariest shorts we uncovered online
TRENDING25 FREE-TO-WATCH SHORT HORROR FILMSThe scariest shorts we uncovered online
Red Pill, Blue Pill - 10 films influenced by 'The Matrix' on its 20th anniversary
TRENDINGRED PILL, BLUE PILL10 films influenced by 'The Matrix' on its 20th anniversary
Gallipoli - A powerful and important film remembered
TRENDINGGALLIPOLIA powerful and important film remembered
xXx: Return Of Xander Cage - The good, the bad and the ugly
TRENDINGxXx: RETURN OF XANDER CAGEThe good, the bad and the ugly
The Land Before Time - 30th anniversary of a breathtaking animated masterpiece
TRENDINGTHE LAND BEFORE TIME30th anniversary of a breathtaking animated masterpiece
Peter Rabbit 2 - The rebel rabbit is back
TRENDINGPETER RABBIT 2The rebel rabbit is back
Lion - A raw and powerful journey of identity
TRENDINGLIONA raw and powerful journey of identity
Spiral: From the Book of Saw - slasher series receives satisfactory spin off
TRENDINGSPIRAL: FROM THE BOOK OF SAWslasher series receives satisfactory spin off
The Secrets We Keep - They kept a big secret... this movie is mediocre
TRENDINGTHE SECRETS WE KEEPThey kept a big secret... this movie is mediocre
Waterloo - An epic recreation of the legendary battle
TRENDINGWATERLOOAn epic recreation of the legendary battle
© 2011 - 2021 midnightproductions
All rights reserved

Support SWITCH | Disclaimer | Contact Us!