Somewhere in Kansas, Frank operates the Middle O'America Motel and dreams of opening a club where he'll sing his country songs. His wife Helen is disparaging, so when a scheming chanteuse is dumped by her loutish husband on Frank's front door, Frank is bewitched. In short order, though, the visitor (Julie) has dispatched Helen, set in motion a con for Frank's money, called her husband to come get her, and taken Frank's army buddy (just arrived for a visit) into the bathtub for some fun. Soon Frank is in over his head, just as Helen's twin sister comes for a visit and Julie's husband arrives looking for his wife. Is there any way out of this situation (and out of Kansas) for Frank? Written by
Daniel Stern carries this "black comedy" as a likable, sympathetic, wannabe country and western singer. Unfortunately he is stuck in the middle of nowhere, running a tacky motel, with his shrewish, bible thumper wife. Various characters, all of which are well developed, become involved in murder, with plenty of dark comedy throughout. The best part about "Dead Simple" is the acting by Daniel Stern, James Caan and Patricia Richardson, and the "Fargo"-like script. The movie is both unpredictable and highly entertaining. If you like dark comedies such as "Clay Pigeons" or "A Simple Plan", then this is worth checking out. Recommended of its type. - MERK
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