berwick upon tweed film and media art festival 2015

Women With Cows

Peter Gerdehag

Location: The Maltings Theatre & Cinema Sweden / 2011 / 95 min / Cert. Suggested 12a

79-year-old Britt still lives on what was her father’s farm and has devoted her entire life to looking after the cows. Years of manual labour and several bovine-related injuries have taken a dramatic toll on her health, and although her back has almost bent double, each day she still milks her dozen beauties by hand. She also likes cats, chickens and other animals.

Her sister Inger, however, long since escaped, married and moved away - though she’s only down the road. The two don't see eye-to-eye on cows, and Inger pleads with Britt to sell them off, but yet she comes every day to help work on the dilapidated farm.

The countryside may look ravishing, but Gerdehag's documentary pulls no punches – the cows run amok and the sisters squabble, as we watch the daily drama of life on the farm unfold, like a fly on the barn wall.

One of the biggest box office successes for a documentary in Swedish history, Women With Cows is littered with beautifully observed moments and wonderfully funny sisterly spats. It is a touching tale of family loyalty that knows no bounds.

“It presents a portrait of sisterhood, stubbornness, and frailty which is sometimes humorous and sometimes deeply poignant, and made it one of the most memorable of the films I saw at the fest.”
- Basil Tioskos, Indiewire

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Women With Cows: Trailer