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A Simple Plan (1998)

R  |   |  Crime, Drama, Thriller  |  22 January 1999 (USA)
7.5
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 47,489 users   Metascore: 82/100
Reviews: 414 user | 124 critic | 28 from Metacritic.com

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.

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(novel), (screenplay)
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Title: A Simple Plan (1998)

A Simple Plan (1998) on IMDb 7.5/10

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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 18 wins & 17 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

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

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

Taglines:

They've worked hard all their lives, but they still can't afford the American Dream. Stealing it is even better. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

| | | |

Language:

Release Date:

22 January 1999 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Thousand Miles  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$17,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

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

Gross:

£506,625 (UK) (11 June 1999)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

|

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Many of the props used in the film were local items: for example the feed store calendar (used in the scene "Are you mean to tell me that there were five weeks last month?") is the State Bank of Delano anniversary calendar (current at the time of filming) which featured photos of historic buildings (some torn down) in the town (and town's past), hence its rustic addition of the prop to the feed store. See more »

Goofs

When the money is burned in the fireplace, you can see that some of the bills say "motion picture use only". See more »

Quotes

Jacob Mitchell: I wish somebody else had found that money.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Special Report (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Spirit in the Sky
Written and Performed by Norman Greenbaum
Courtesy of Trans/Tone Productions
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User Reviews

Simply Terrific
7 February 1999 | by (Cairns Australia) – See all my reviews

Simply one of the best films of the year, perhaps the decade! A Simple Plan is about three men who find a huge amount of money in a plane wreck. They decide to keep the dough. It's like winning the lottery. It's the American Dream except that " you're supposed to work for the American Dream. But that just makes this better" replies one of the characters.

A Simple Plan stars Bill Paxton and Billy Bob Thornton as two Minnesotan brothers Hank and Jacob who find the money with Jake's friend Lou played by Brent Briscoe.

The film is directed by Sam Raimi, the creator of the Evil Dead movies and there are some suitably macabre and funny Evil Dead touches to this masterpiece, although Raimi doesn't botch A Simple Plan up as he did with Sharon Stone's The Quick And The Dead a couple of years ago. This is a restrained, delicate Raimi.

A Simple Plan instead is on one plane a wry incisive comment on the human condition, but it's also a cautionary tale about the evil good men can do.

The characters are fascinating. Paxton as Hank is the brainy one of the three. He's been to college and has a wife (Bridget Fonda) who's just about to have a baby. Jacob is slow and sad with a big touch of goodness about him. His hair is lank, his teeth are dirty, he's in his thirties and has never had a girlfriend.

Jake gets drunk most days and nights with his boozing friend Lou, and both are unemployed. The prospect of a ton of money is as unsettling and exciting to this lot as it would be to any honest person who becomes suddenly very rich unexpectedly and illegally. This find is guaranteed to turn their lives up side down.

But things take increasingly violent turns until A Simple Plan has the air of a Shakespearian tragedy solidly biased by Hitchcockian twists. Add to this Raimi's weird sense of humour and a Coen Brothers, Fargo like frozen air and you have a superb film that will have you laughing uncomfortably as you ponder the extent to which men and women will go nuts and nasty when greed overcomes them.

Quite rightly both Bill Paxton and Billy Bob Thornton are being touted for big acting awards as a result of their work in this marvellous film.


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