"Baja Oklahoma makes these folks so real that you'll
feel as if you've been dropped into the overstuffed chair in Juanita's
living room to sip a beer... Once you start watching them, you won't be
able to resist sticking with them until the end. And then you'll want more...
Baja Oklahoma is filled with original country music that will
leave you smiling even if you don't usually care much for guitars or banjos."
"Baja Oklahoma creates a mood more than it tells a story...
But the mood is its own, colorful and complete with quirky characthers
and cameo appearances by the Beaters, Harris and Willie Nelson... And Coyote?
Well, he's dandy. Peter Coyote could be the Sam Shepard of the TV movie.
He haas that lanky insouciance, that lip curled in wry amusement, that
know-it-all air. Juanita's initial resistance to him is just plain crazy."
"Warren is delightful as Juanita, a tear-stained barmaid striving
to become a songwriter. Coyote gives a strong, steady performance as Slick
Henderson, a mature version of the skirt-chaser who broke Juanita's heart
twenty years ago. And Bobby Roth has directed a feature film that looks,
sounds, moves and feels like a feature film."
"Blue-collar folks, Stetsons and Texas-sized heartache are some of
the things that give Baja Oklahoma the down-home appeal of
a frothy pitcher of tap beer."
The Miami Herald:
"Baja, a "little film" by a major studio's
standards, doesn't need a big boss of a budget to make it work. It feels
more like a movie than most of what you'll see on free TV... Warren sings
sweetly and her character strikes some responsive chords. Coyote is sturdy,
and Swoosie has a handle on most of the film's R-rated outrageousness."
"Mounted on Warren's graceful, dancer's body is an expressive face
that showcases Juanita's quicksilver moods, from human vacancy sign to
scrunched, gleeful intensity. Warren is playing far afield from her own
roots, which are New York and Jewish, and he carries it off with absolute
"The HBO movie has its world premiere in Fort Worth before an audience
of entertainment and political celebrities that were to include Jenkins,
stars Lesley Ann Warren and Peter Coyote, and Texas House Speaker Gib Lewis...
The title Baja Oklahoma means Texas. It comes from a wisecrack
by rival Oklahomans who refer to Texas, their Southern neighbor, as Baja
Oklahoma, Spanish for 'beneath Oklahoma'... Baja Oklahoma filmed
for five weeks in the Los Angeles area last summer and one week in Fort
Worth, where more than a thousand locals turned out to pack Billy Bob's
for the climactic final scenes."
"Lively adaptation of Dan Jenkins'
funny novel of a smalltown Texas barmaid who is juggling her dreams of
becoming a songwriter with her rocky romances. Loaded with local color
and music stars like Billy Vera (of Billy and the Beaters), Willie Nelson
(who cowrote the title song with Jenkins), Emmylou Harris, Bob Wills, Jr.
(as his dad), plus South African actress Alice Krige as Patsy Cline."
"America, it used to be said, is a state of mind, a willingness of
the heart, and the chief pleasure of Baja Oklahoma is that
it celebrates all that old dream without apology and without shame."
San Jose Mercury News:
"Rambunctious and sly, with good performances and matching dialogue,
Baja Oklahoma is one of the pleasant surprises of the season."
In the words of the
"Even though I'm an L.A. Jew and
the book is set in Fort Worth, I could relate to the characters."
On Lesley AnnWarren: "She's a thoroughbred." ...Peter Coyote
Did you know?
- Willy Nelson wrote the music for the title song while author Dan Jenkins
wrote the lyrics.
- In the book, Slick is 52 and balding.
- Baja was made in the summer of 1987
in Fort Worth and in Chatsworth, California,
where all the Herb's Cafe scenes were filmed.
- Fort Worth's Billy Bob's Texas, since closed, is the site of the film's
climactic concert. About 1000 people showed up to help stage this scene.
- Lesley Ann Warren does her own singing in the film.
- At one time Shirley MacLaine had agreed to play one of the two leads
but when Paul Newman declined to play Slick, director George Roy Hill lost
- Julia Roberts
was later touted as the film's star when Baja Oklahoma was
released to video.
For new or used video, check
Amazon.com and Ebay auctions.
[ The Peter
Coyote Official Web Site ]