Previously at the ICA - Films
22 Apr 2011 – 8 May 2011
A tremendously patient and awe-inspiring documentary that serves as a real-life contemporary Western – indeed, its extended title is The Last Ride of the American Cowboy. Filmmakers Ilisa Barbash and Lucien Castaing-Taylor shot for three years to capture a way of life that has now vanished, following a pair of veteran hired hands—John Ahern and Pat Connolly—as they herd 3,000 sheep 150 miles across Montana mountains for summer grazing. The film is doggedly real and unsparing in its attention to detail, while also finding an impressionistic beauty and abstract quality in this punishing pastoral profession.
A non-narrative film about a pair of shepherds and their sheep may not sound exciting, but this is as compelling and immersive as anything you’re likely to see in a cinema all year. And that’s just before the bear attack…
Released by Dogwoof
Dirs Ilisa Barbash, Lucian Castaing-Taylor, USA/France 2009, 101 mins, recommended 15 rating, 35mm (tbc)