Film: Poor Cow 15 rating Year: 1967
Poor Cow DVD Cover
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Country: UK Genre: Drama
Director: Ken Loach
Starring: Carol White, Terence Stamp, John Bindon, Queenie Watts

Also see our Guide to Ken Loach, or visit our Ken Loach UK or Ken Loach US stores, or see our reviews of other Ken Loach films It's A Free World, Kes, Looks And Smiles, My Name Is Joe, The Navigators, Raining Stones, Riff Raff, Sweet Sixteen and The Wind That Shakes The Barley.

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Poor Cow Synopsis - Poor Cow is set in London and centres around Joy, a young working class mother who is married to a brutal criminal -Tom. When Tom is put in prison for a violent robbery Joy is left to cope with bringing up her child alone and in squalid circumstances. In due course she falls for Tom's friend Dave, another criminal. Dave is kind hearted and the two are happy making plans and trying to get their lives sorted out. But this is thrown into chaos when Dave himself is put into prison. Joy is alone again, and does her best to try and get things in order for her young child's sake, but as she finds it so difficult to look after just herself (especially with no man around) how will she cope?

Review of Poor Cow - I think you can draw many parallels with Poor Cow, and Loach's TV play of a year earlier "Cathy Come Home", both surround the difficulties of those eking out an existence at the lower end of the social structure, and he pulls no punches in that both don't just offer no easy answers, they actually offer no answers at all (which bravely mirrors the depressing reality of the situation). Also the star of both is Carol White, whose performance here is actually much improved on her previous performance and she seems here to have completely attuned to Loach's approach for the realism / non-acting style of acting. Terence Stamp is also superb as Dave. The soundtrack of Donovan's sunny songs works incredibly well against the mostly downbeat reality of the story.
The reasons I recommend Poor Cow are: 1. A downbeat tale actualised very well by cast and director 2. A great soundtrack by Donovan.