No staunch defender of the Wes Anderson aesthetic should complain that Miranda July’s movies suffer from a fussily arranged, determined weirdness. So I’ll say instead that I personally find it difficult to ride her wavelength. But I might be learning. Kajillionaire worked better for me than the writer-director’s feature debut, the interconnected narrative Me and You and Everyone We Know. (I haven’t seen her second film, The Future.) I think that’s largely because Kajillionaire concentrates on a central narrative, allowing you to settle into the characters’ quirks. Set in contemporary Los Angeles, the movie follows a pair of desperate, low-level con artists (Richard Jenkins and Debra Winger) who scrounge about running scams with the help of their stunted adult daughter, Old Dolio (Evan Rachel Wood). When they bring an enthusiastic sales clerk named Melanie (Gina Rodriguez) into the fold, the family equilibrium shifts in a way that’s more jarring than the earthquake tremors that rumble through the movie. July is a sharp visual stylist—the recurring image of soap bubbles seeping through the office wall that the family calls home is a strikingly unsettling metaphor—and it’s fun watching Rodriguez indulge her considerable comic chops. (Especially after her awful misuse in 2019’s Miss Bala.) At its best, the movie is a destabilizing look at family as a big con. Yet the chemistry between Rodriguez and Wood never sings, which becomes a problem as the movie shifts to focus more on their relationship. Melanie comes from the real world, while Old Dolio—given a low, catatonic monotone by a thoroughly committed, nearly unrecognizable Wood—could only exist in the July Cinematic Universe. She’s the oddest—and most inaccessible—of Kajillionaire‘s many odd ducks.