A Chinese peasant is given the responsibility of protecting his village's special dairy cow during a particularly harsh winter in 1940.
To me this was a very intriguing premise right from the start since I like to watch stories about bonds between animals and people. And it is rare to see a bond being described between a cow and a man. However while this might sound like those Disney type of movies I have to warn you this is very different. There is a lot going on in this film that is confronting and educational. Especially when you learn that the Sino- Japanese war is very much active in this village. Next to some harsh realities and perhaps a little communist propaganda the focus is on friendship and love. The main character and the way he goes to extreme lengths to protect the cow who can be very stubborn is absolutely charming. The fact that he is a little slow and has a huge heart makes it even more captivating. You will admire his drive especially since most people would have given up in the same circumstances. Dou niu is not told chronologically and uses a lot of flashbacks with great effect. By doing so it manages to surprise you and explains how hard it must have been for our main character to go through the events displayed. Especially since some truly shocking and heartbreaking scenes make you realize the despair this character must have been experiencing. To tell you more would ruin too much so I won't. This a beautiful film made with a lot of heart and you can feel that while watching. Please do yourself a favour and go watch this as soon as you can. A must watch!