A review of the recent film “Funny Cow”

I saw this film this weekend in a church hall in London’s Winchmore Hill where it was shown by a community cinema project called “Talkies” and followed by a question & answer session with Lindsey Coulson, a local actress who plays the drunkard mother of the titular character, a comedienne attempting to succeed in the working mens’ clubs of the north of England in the 1980s.

The work had a very limited theatrical release and one can understand why. Whatever the title, there is little humour here, but instead almost unremitting misery. Furthermore the chronology is fractured and confusing, there is an odd mix of presentational styles, and it is very unclear what writer Tony Pitts and director Adrian Shergold are trying to tell us.

So, why see it? Mainly for a powerful performance by Maxime Peake who, as the eponymous ‘cow’ (the character is never given a name), is rarely off the screen and is compellingly watchable.


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