“This stunning feature debut is clearly the work of a born film maker.” – Stephen Holden, New York Times
Set in Spain’s Basque Country, Vacas (Cows) tells of a bitter rivalry and a decades-old feud between three generations of the Mendiluze and Iriguibel families, stretching from the Third Carlist War through the Spanish Civil War. These families, not unlike the tale of the Hatfields and McCoys, have carried a simmering, deep-seated hatred dating back to a war-time act that left brave Carmelo Mendiluze dead on the battlefield and the cowardly deserter Manuel Iriguibel crippled but alive. Years have not cooled the animosity between these houses as the film traces the lives, loves, and deaths that propel the atmospheric story forward to its inevitable outcome. Directed by Julio Medem (Tierra, The Red Squirrel) from a screenplay by Medem and Michel Gaztambide, Vacas stars Carmelo Gómez (Tierra, The Red Squirrel), Emma Suárez (Julieta, The Red Squirrel), Ana Torrent (The Other Boleyn Girl) and Karra Elejalde (Tierra).
Director Medem is immeasurably aided by cinematographer Carles Gusi (El Niño), whose camera captures the lush foliage of the Basque countryside and cocoon-like farmhouse interiors, successfully recreating a bygone era. The film also features a dramatic score courtesy of composer Alberto Iglesias (The Constant Gardener).