(director/writer: Ethan Coen; screenwriter: Tricia Cooke; cinematographer: Ari Wegner; editor: Tricia Cooke; music: Carter Burwell; cast: Margaret Qualley (Jamie), Geraldine Viswanathan (Marian), Beanie Feldman (Sukie), Colman Domingo (The Goons boss-The Chief), Joey Slotnick (The goons-Arliss), C. J. Wilson (The Goons-Flint), Bill Camp (Curlie), Pedro Pascal (The Collector), Connie Jackson (Aunt Ellis), Matt Damon (Senator Gary Channel); Runtime: 84; MPAA Rating: R; producers: Robert Graf, Ethan Coen, Tim Bevan, Tricia Cooke, Eric Fellner; Focus Features; 2024)

“Breezy lesbian road-comedy, that’s mildly amusing and very raunchy.”

Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

Ethan Coen  (“The Ladykillers”/”Burn After Reading”), the younger half of the Coen Brothers, is writer-director of this breezy lesbian road-comedy, that’s mildly amusing and very raunchy. Tricia Cooke, Ethan’s lesbian wife, is co-writer, producer and editor. It should be noted the siblings have been making films together since 1984 and go solo for the second time after splitting a few years ago. In 2021, Joel made the serious Shakespeare pic, “The Tragedy of Macbeth.” There’s an expected reunion in sight.

It’s set in 1999, seemingly for no particular reason.

The carefree and slutty twenty-something with a heavy Texas accent, Jamie (Margaret Qualley), and her same aged but more conservative and uptight bookish lesbian best friend, Marian (Geraldine Viswanathan), are going by rental car from Philadelphia to Tallahassee, Florida to visit Marian’s aunt (Connie Jackson). The trip comes after Jamie’s policewoman scorned lover, Sukie (Beanie Feldman), breaks up with her because she was cheating. But retains the dildo she was given by Jamie.

Unknown to the ladies, they were given the wrong car at the drive-away service. This car has a briefcase inside the trunk that has a decapitated head of the blackmailer (Pedro Pascal) that belongs to the baddie, The Chief (Colman Domingo), who sends his bumbling goons, Arliss (Joey Slotnick) and Flint (C. J. Wilson), to track Jamie and Marian down on the road to recover the briefcase in the car the goons were supposed to drive to Florida before the mix-up.

On their way to Florida, the ladies take time out to stop at numerous dyke bars, have a slumber party with a happy sapphic soccer team and check-out the billboards  of the Red State’s anti-gay senator (
Matt Damon).

Besides hitting a few bumps on the road, the B-film is zany, a bit weird, and entertaining as a minor Coen brothers solo work.

REVIEWED ON 2/25/2024  GRADE: B-