Far from being a political tirade on the treatment of dairy farmers in the UK, The Moo Man offers an insight into the relationship between man and animal. We spend a year in the life of farmer Steve Hook and his heard of 55 dairy cows. Steve has turned his back on the corporate side of dairy farming and has chosen to go it alone and sell his milk direct to the consumer.
A one man and his cows story doesn’t sound all that exciting, and to be honest, it isn’t. There are no killing stampedes, mass fights or cows running around brandishing AK47’s. what we get is a rare insight to farming life and the bond that can be formed between animal and man. All the cows have names which Steve knows off by heart. He teaches us about how they all have different personalities and what makes not just a successful dairy cow, but also how a relationship can be built and harvested for the success of the farm.
Juxtaposed next to each other are Steve caring day after day for an injured cow and in the next scene, him butchering a bull cow called Kato. A true reminder of the harsh reality that we live in when it comes to survival and profits.
Although I can’t really claim it as a must see, it is one of the more enlightening movies at this years festival. With its simple story, a melting pot of emotions are created and a better understanding of the animal/human bond is found. This is worth seeing if you have the time.