‘Concrete Cowboy’ is a new film out on Netflix this weekend and stars ‘Stranger Things’ Caleb McLaughlin as Cole, a teenager dropped off at his father’s doorstep in Philadelphia. The father Harp, played by Idris Elba, is a cowboy in Philadelphia. He owns a horse and is a part of a community of horse owners that are keeping the tradition of horses in Philadelphia alive. Harp was never in the son’s life and is just as surprised to see Cole as Cole is to see him. Cole is faced with a decision to either conform to learning about his father and about his life and the bond of man and horse or continue down the path that will only lead to nothing good.
Firstly I am really impressed with Caleb McLaughlin’s performance. From transitioning into a more serious and mature role from his ‘Stranger Things’ role, he really transforms in this performance. Idris Elba is also giving one of his better performances here as a regretful but stern father that doesn’t have any clue how to raise this already grown son, but can only keep him out of trouble.
That trouble takes the form of ‘Smush’, played by Jharrel Jerome who befriends Cole immediately and gets into trouble with the law, represented by Method Man. I think Method Man is really good in this film as well and is proving that he can take on serious roles and be taken seriously.
The cinematography is stunning, seeing how the horses are utilized in these city landscapes and basketball courts, it’s something that’s not been done in major motion pictures before. It’s really interesting to learn about this little spot in Philadelphia that rides, races, and cares for horses.
‘Concrete Cowboy’ introduces a world that many do not know. with a strong emotional core of fathers and sons, and the passion and connection of humans and horses.