In this shaggy-dog '70s coming-of-age tale, two 20-something brothers set out across suburban Boston after a massive snow storm in a valiant attempt to score an "exceedingly fine ounce of Dominican Sin." Despite city orders to stay off the roads, John and Gully Gullivan suit up in fake Red Cross outfits, slap a Red Cross sign on their van and head off. But the hapless duo are soon railroaded into playing Good Samaritan, helping old ladies, delivering insulin and shepherding their fearsome childhood priest on his rounds. Their madcap adventures have a somber edge because their mother is in the hospital in the last stages of cancer; their father died in a freak accident years ago. A series of flashbacks chronicle the soon-to-be-orphans' Irish Catholic childhood, including their taunting of mustached Dally next door, who reappears as a sexy, self-assured college girl and joins them on their snow-day jaunt. The jittery, episodic narrative may throw some readers, and the humor can be haphazard and hyperbolic, but Flaherty's loving rendition of Boston suburbia in the '60s and '70s, complete with homages to comic books, gas-station pastries, Cream and old elementary schools, will charm the Slackers set. Agent, Joy Tutela at the David Black Agency. (Feb. 5)
Forecast: Strong local sales are to be expected in Boston and the Northeast, where Flaherty will tour. This would make a nice buddy flick for Boston natives Ben Affleck and brother Casey.