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Even Cowgirls Get the Blues (1993)

R  |   |  Comedy, Drama, Romance  |  20 May 1994 (USA)
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Ratings: 4.2/10 from 5,972 users   Metascore: 28/100
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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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Title: Even Cowgirls Get the Blues (1993)

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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 <>

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:

,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs



Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Gary Oldman was originally cast as Julian Gitche. See more »


Narrator: Usually she preferred to hitchhike without a fixed destination hitching for hitching's sake for freedom and movement and that alone. But something was pulling her to the Rubber Rose, something softer than money and stranger than work.
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 »


String Quartet in G Minor; Opus 10
By Claude Debussy
Performed by Hollis Taylor, Lori Presthus, Kim Lorati and Karen Bryan
See more »

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User Reviews

Even Good Directors Get The Blues
18 December 2004 | by (Macon, Mississippi) – See all my reviews

Gus Van Sant has directed some truly brilliant films. His directorial credits include "My Own Private Idaho," "To Die For," "Drugstore Cowboy," and, most recently, the audacious and thought-provoking allegory of school violence, "Elephant." He also was the executive producer of the infamous, eye-opening "Kids." However, his reputation took a tumble with the needless, colorized shot-by-shot remake of Alfred Hitchcock's "Psycho," with Vince Vaughn standing in for Anthony Perkins! However, "Even Cowgirls Get The Blues" goes down in history as one of the most witless, undramatic, incoherent, dumbest, laziest, and plot less films ever to be released upon the public. The counter-culture novel by Tom Robbins is 100% trashed here. The novel shouldn't have been filmed at such a late date anyway. Or, perhaps, it shouldn't have been filmed at all.

Uma Thurman stars as Sissy Hankshaw, who somehow is a professional hitch-hiker (remember the book is set in the 60's; the movie makes no attempt to let us know exactly what time period this is supposed to be) who manages to get easy rides by sticking out her bulging, grossly large thumb. Yeah, that pulls the guys over every time.

Sissy meets up with an insane slew of Hollywood stars who seem to be doing a special favor for Van Sandt. Meandering around are Roseanne Barr, John Hurt, Keanu Reeves, Crispin Glover, Carol Kane, and...are you ready...Angie Dickinson! For unknown reasons, Sissy hitches a ride to a "feminist ranch" that pampers spa services to rich women. For further unknown reasons, there's a gaggle of "cowgirls" living and working on the ranch, led by Rain Phoenix as "Bonanza Jellybean." What results is nothing...nothing at all. There is not even the slightest story to speak of. The film seems to have been edited with duct tape. Van Sandt reportedly re-edited this film furiously after it was "booed" off of the screen at various premieres. I would love to see what he cut out. He would have been better off just completely scrapping this project.

But Van Sant is all forgiven for this travesty. He has gone on to prove himself as a solid director/producer. "Even Cowgirls Get The Blues" is probably the only Gus Van Sant film that you can get for $2.00 out of a bargain bin at Family Dollar.

8 of 11 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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