IMDb > The Cow (1969)

The Cow (1969) More at IMDbPro »Gaav (original title)


User Rating:
8.2/10   3,227 votes »
Your Rating:
Saving vote...
Deleting vote...
/10   (delete | history)
Sorry, there was a problem
MOVIEmeter: ?
Up 123% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
December 1974 (USA) See more »
The whole village knows that Mashti Hassan loves his cow to death. One day he goes to the Tehran. His cow dies. The villagers are afraid of what might happen once Hassan finds out his cow is dead. What will happen when he finds out? Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
2 wins & 1 nomination See more »
User Reviews:
Interesting yet moribund study of human relationships See more (13 total) »


  (in credits order)
Ezzatolah Entezami ... Masht Hassan
Mahin Shahabi ... Hassans wife
Ali Nassirian ... Islam
Jamshid Mashayekhi ... Abbas
Firouz Behjat-Mohamadi
Jafar Vali ... Kadkhoda
Khosrow Shojazadeh ... Boy
Ezatallah Ramezanifar ... Madman
Esmat Safavi ... Old woman
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Mahmoud Dowlatabadi
Parviz Fanizadeh
Create a character page for: ?

Directed by
Dariush Mehrjui 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Dariush Mehrjui  writer
Gholam-Hossein Saedi  play

Produced by
Dariush Mehrjui .... producer
Original Music by
Hormouz Farhat 
Cinematography by
Fereydon Ghovanlou 
Film Editing by
Dariush Mehrjui 
Sound Department
Hormouz Farhat .... sound

Production CompaniesDistributors
Create a character page for: ?

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Gaav" - Iran (original title)
See more »
105 min
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

One person who reacted warmly to the film was the then Ayatollah Khomeini.See more »
Movie Connections:
Featured in Cinema Iran (2005) (TV)See more »


This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
6 out of 15 people found the following review useful.
Interesting yet moribund study of human relationships, 14 May 2006
Author: Rob Brown (cinephiliac) from London, UK

This simple tale is open to interpretation, which can be considered positively or otherwise – it perhaps hearkens back to folk tales which are passed down orally, and contain simple plots which are then the basis of discussion. In this way it is easily remembered and its meanings can be deciphered afterwards by those who watch it. However it also means that the film seems overlong for the most part, pre-occupied with repeating sequences and behaviour again and again, and even drawing out the fairly dramatic ending which arguably diminishes its strength. Perhaps it would have been better presented in a shorter runtime, or a more heavily stylised manner such as that of the title sequence. Nevertheless, regardless of enjoyment there are many threads of discussion that can be considered.

One of the key questions raised by the film is that of the mental stability of the protagonist, Hassan, whose loss of his animal will bring about his somewhat metamorphosis into the same creature. At the start of the film he is seen behaving extremely strangely as he leads his cow back to town, exultantly dancing around it as he washes and caresses it. This man is not behaving as the other people (such as the children) do. Hassan is mirrored somewhat by the town idiot, who is berated by the other people, and even locked up so as to keep Hassan himself from learning the secret of his cow's death. This mirroring, and Hassan's transformation, make it possible to consider the village's relationship to both Hassan and his cow – certainly throughout neither are treated with respect, and the film's end highlights this.

Perhaps Mehrjui, the film's creator, comments on the actual importance of the cow and this man's relationship, an idea that is supported by the title of the piece.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (13 total) »

Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for The Cow (1969)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
So... the cow is probably a metaphor for the Iranian cinema. wwolf-8
What struck you about 'The Cow' or 'Gaav'? rudradev64
UK DVD release? andynortonuk
See more »


If you enjoyed this title, our database also recommends:
- - - - -
The Tree of Wooden Clogs To Stay Alive The Color of Paradise Kleine Teun Defiance
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
IMDb User Rating:
Show more recommendations

Related Links

Full cast and crew Company credits External reviews
IMDb Drama section IMDb Iran section

You may report errors and omissions on this page to the IMDb database managers. They will be examined and if approved will be included in a future update. Clicking the 'Edit page' button will take you through a step-by-step process.