Cockfighting

The Essential Warren Oates: COCKFIGHTER (1974)

In Two-Lane Blacktop Monte Hellman cast Warren Oates as a man who ran his mouth as much as he ran his muscle car. In Cockfighter Hellman takes Oates in the exact opposite direction, playing a man who doesn’t speak at all. He’s Frank Mansfield, one of the best cockfighters working the few states where it’s still legal, and he’s taken a vow of silence after losing his prime chicken after talking too much. Frank will stay silent until he’s been named the Cockfighter of the Year, a prestigious award that isn’t even given out every year - just in the years when someone deserves it.