Beer for My Horses is a 2008 American comedy film. The film stars country music entertainer Toby Keith and is based on his song by the same name. The film was co-written by Keith and Rodney Carrington (who also stars in the film) and directed by Michael Salomon, who has directed numerous music videos for Keith.
The film was shot in and around Las Vegas, New Mexico, United States and was released on August 8, 2008. It made about $667,000 in its limited box office release.
Best friends Joe Bill "Rack" Racklin (Toby Keith) and Lonnie Freeman (Rodney Carrington) are deputy sheriffs in the small town of Mangum, Oklahoma that enjoy pig hunting and drinking at the local bar the Thirsty Monkey.
After his girlfriend Cammie (Gina Gershon) leaves him when he does not make time for her due to his job and hanging out with friends, Rack finds out that his old flame Annie Streets (Claire Forlani) has returned home from Chicago to care for her sick mother. Rack, Lonnie, and their friend and fellow deputy Skunk Tarver (Ted Nugent) arrest three local criminals and a Mexican drug lord Tito Garza (Greg Serano) for stealing fertilizer that is intended to make methamphetamine. Garza is scheduled to be turned over to the FBI for federal charges when Annie mysteriously disappears after a date with Rack, who discovers that Annie has been kidnapped by Tito's older brother Manuel Garza (Carlos Sanz), who runs a large Mexican drug cartel. Manuel contacts the police and demands Manuel to be returned to him in Santa Luna, Mexico or he will kill Annie.
Despite being taken off the case by their boss Sheriff Landry (Tom Skerritt), Rack, Lonnie, and Skunk bust Tito out of his jail cell and take him to Mexico. Along the way, they approach a young hooker named Harveyetta and are helped by a group of circus entertainers led by Charlie (Willie Nelson), who gives them a jug of homemade whiskey known as "circus jolly."
Once in Mexico after dropping Harveyetta off, they engage in a gunfight with Garza's men and it is revealed that Annie's rich and powerful stepfather Buck Baker (Barry Corbin) is Garza's partner and his United Farm Enterprises is the base for the largest methamphetamine operation in Oklahoma. Baker reveals that the local district attorney Levin (Curtis Armstrong) is corrupt and that he has been giving Annie's mother "goofy juice" to make her appear to have Alzheimer's disease.
With the help of former criminal Johnny Franks who becomes undercover FBI agent Levon Spurlock, Rack kills Buck and rescues Annie. Rack, Lonnie, and Skunk turn Manuel and Tito over to the FBI in Oklahoma City and return to Mangum. There they are cheered by the local crows at the Thirsty Monkey. Landry berates them for disobeying orders but does not arrest them and everyone toasts "whiskey for my men, beer for my horses" while serving "circus jolly".Toby Keith as Joe Bill "Rack" Racklin
Rodney Carrington as Lonnie Luther Freeman
Ted Nugent as Skunk Tarver
Barry Corbin as Buck Baker
Greg Serano as Tito Garza
Carlos Sanz as Manuel Garza
Claire Forlani as Annie Streets
Curtis Armstrong as D.A. Levin
Tom Skerritt as Sheriff Wilson Landry
Willie Nelson as Charlie
Chris Browning as Deputy Stippens
Mac Davis as Preacher
Keith Jardine as Jay Boy Simpson
Gina Gershon as Cammie
Sam Carrington as Boy on Bridge #2
David Allan Coe as Gypsy
Mel Tillis as Bob the plumber
The film made $800,000 in its limited domestic release, with a possible worldwide gross of $1,500,000.
The film is available on DVD and Blu-Ray, and has made $27.5 million in DVD sales, and $14 million in Blu-Ray, for a total of $42.5 million in home video sales.
The film was released to 450 theatres in 2008, and made $235,000 in its opening weekend, and stayed in theatres for four weeks, it made a total of $895,000.
The film holds a rating of 0% on Rotten Tomatoes based on 11 critics. Toby Keith was panned for his performance, though Willie Nelson was praised.