Even Cowgirls Get the Blues (1993)

R  |   |  Comedy, Drama, Romance  |  20 May 1994 (USA)
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Ratings: 4.2/10 from 6,016 users   Metascore: 28/100
Reviews: 49 user | 24 critic | 16 from Metacritic.com

Sissy Hankshaw is born with enormous thumbs that help her hitchhiking through the US from a young age. She becomes a model in advertising and her NY agent 'the Countess' sends her to his ... See full summary »


(as Gus Van Sant Jr.)


(novel), (screenplay)
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1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Delores Del Ruby
The Chink (as Noriyuki 'Pat' Morita)
Miss Adrian
Bonanza Jellybean
Marie Barth
Howard Barth
Madame Zoe (as Roseanne Arnold)
Dr. Dreyfus
Treva Jeffryes ...
Young Sissy


Sissy Hankshaw is born with enormous thumbs that help her hitchhiking through the US from a young age. She becomes a model in advertising and her NY agent 'the Countess' sends her to his ranch in CA to shoot a commercial, set against the background of mating whooping cranes. There, she befriends Bonanza Jellybean, one of the cowgirls at the beauty- ranch. The cowgirls take command of the ranch from the Countess and 'drug' the cranes with 'peyote'. The police besiege the ranch. Written by Pieter van Scherpenberg <mediavis@netland.nl>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


There have been many great drivers but only one great passenger.

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sexuality and some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

20 May 1994 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Até as Vaqueiras Ficam Tristes  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$8,000,000 (estimated)


$1,710,000 (USA)

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
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Technical Specs



Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


This film was dedicated to the late River Phoenix, who is said to have a small nameless cameo in the film. See more »


Bonanza Jellybean: Did you know that cowgirls have been around for many centuries? Long before America. In ancient India, the care of cattle was always left up to these young women they called "gopis." Now being alone with the cows all the time, these gopis got awfully horny, just like we do here. Each gopi was in love with Krishna, a good lookin' hunk of a god, who played the flute like it was going out of style. And when the moon was full, this Krishna would play his flute by the river and call the gopis to him...
See more »

Crazy Credits

At the beginning, lot of stars rise in the sky. One, aside and slower than the others, writes the words "For River". [River Phoenix] See more »


Referenced in The Roseanne Show: Episode #1.12 (1998) See more »


Cheso Fresco
Written by Lee Bradford and Molly Little
Performed by Palante
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User Reviews

Another case of the book being much much better
11 March 2006 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

Gus Van Sant has made some excellent films. I truly am a fan.

However, I can't help but feel that the cerebral edge of Tom Robbins book "Even Cowgirls Get the Blues" is lost in translation to the big screen. Alone, Tom Robbins and Gus Van Sant are incredible visionaries and towers of talent. Ultimately though this one just didn't work.

It wasn't that the characters weren't well developed or the plot and content didn't come alive. It's just that our imaginations are much more powerful when reading a book like this. We're taken away to a different time and place and we sometimes think the worst and/or the best and it adds to the overall roller-coaster of the book as it neatly unfolds according to the author's precision. Movies however can leave one with less of the imagination and emotion roller-coaster detracting from the overall experience. This is what I believe happened here.

I suggest reading the book!

8 of 12 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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