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A Simple Plan (1998)

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When three blue collar acquaintances come across millions of dollars in lost cash they make a plan to keep their find from the authorities but find complications and mistrust weaving its way into their plan.



(novel), (screenplay)
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 14 wins & 22 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Jack Walsh ...
Nancy Chambers
Bob Davis ...
FBI Agent Renkins
FBI Agent Freemont
Tom Carey ...
Dwight Stephanson
Mr. Schmitt
Marie Mathay ...
News Reporter
Paul Magers ...
Joan Steffand ...


Three diverse characters, for the most part intellectually challenged, find a deserted plane with a bag full of millions of dollars inside. They devise a simple plan to keep the money if no-one claims it. Ofcourse, nothing turns out simple... Written by Filmtwob <webmaster@filmfreak.co.za>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Sometimes good people do evil things. See more »


Crime | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




| | | |


Release Date:

22 January 1999 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Thousand Miles  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$30,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$390,563 (USA) (11 December 1998)


$16,311,763 (USA) (14 May 1999)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


This was the last film to be produced by the now defunct, short lived independent production company, Savoy Pictures. Originally in 1996, Savoy Pictures filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, however "A Simple Plan" which was originally to be produced solely by Savoy was forced to negotiate co-production deals with other motion picture studios, one being Paramount which picked up the film for a co-production and distribution. See more »


A funeral scene in the latter half of the movie takes place in the middle of winter, but is a full burial service. In Minnesota, as is the case with other northern locales where the ground is frozen for several months of the year, the funeral for someone who died in the winter would occur in two parts: a "real time" memorial service followed by spring interment. See more »


[first lines]
Hank Mitchell: [narrating] When I was still just a kid, I remember my father telling me what he thought that it took for a man to be happy. Simple things, really. A wife he loves, a decent job, friends and neighbors who like and respect him. And for a while there, without hardly even realizing it, I had all that. I was a happy man.
See more »


Referenced in Special Report (2014) See more »


Spirit in the Sky
Written and Performed by Norman Greenbaum
Courtesy of Trans/Tone Productions
See more »

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User Reviews

A study in desperation
17 July 2000 | by (Nashville, TN) – See all my reviews

A Simple Plan is certainly not a simple film, as some reviewers here had hoped it would be. The point is not how simple life is, but how horribly wrong and out of control things can get. This film takes you to the absolute depths of human greed, desperation, and frailty. It is amazing how many evil deeds one can rationalize by believing "and then it will all be over." A Simple Plan is a great character study which makes you think of what you would do in the same situation. At what point would you draw the line? How far would you go to keep millions of dollars all to yourself? The excellent photography adds to the sense of desperation that permeates the whole film. The vast, snowbound landscape is the perfect image for the feelings the main characters have for their station in life: cold, silent, lifeless, unending, and unrelenting.

Don't watch this movie unless you are prepared to see a group of people reach the end of their rope and make a series of life-changing decisions.

65 of 74 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Which mistake was the dumbest of all? BigEasy1203
Rip-off of Shallow Grave (1994)? krakkety
Only 10% of serial numbers on money were recorded chipnauman
The first murder was far-fetched ceeprod
Other Films Like This... LappGM
what happened to the kidnap victim? rutica
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