6.1/10
7,307
78 user 56 critic

Best Laid Plans (1999)

A botched robbery leads two crooks and an unwitting buddy into a web of passion, crime and murder in this twist-laden film noir.

Director:

Mike Barker

Writer:

Ted Griffin
1 win. See more awards »

Photos

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Alessandro Nivola ... Nick
Reese Witherspoon ... Lissa
Josh Brolin ... Bryce
Gene Wolande ... Lawyer
Jonathan McMurtry Jonathan McMurtry ... Vet
Terrance Sweeney ... Priest (as Father Terrance Sweeney)
Rebecca Klingler ... Diner Waitress
Rocky Carroll ... Bad Ass Dude
Kate Hendrickson ... Bar Waitress
Owen Bush ... Vagrant
Jesse Woodrow ... Roach Coach Clerk
Jamie Marsh ... Barry
Michael McCleery ... Recycling Owner
Terrence Howard ... Jimmy (as Terrence Dashon Howard)
Sean Nepita Sean Nepita ... Freddie
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Storyline

Bryce (Josh Brolin) is a successful man who returns to his tiny hometown for a visit. While there, he runs into his old friend Nick (Alessandro Nivola). The two decide to go out for the night. When they enter a bar, Bryce encounters Kathy (Reese Witherspoon), a blonde temptress whom he eventually takes home for the night. When he awakens, Kathy informs him that she is underage and threatens to tell the police that Bryce has committed statutory rape. Bryce panics and decides to tie her up and hide her away in the basement. He then makes a call to Nick. Unbeknownst to Bryce, Kathy is actually Nick's girlfriend Lissa. The two had schemed to use Bryce's money to pay off a $15,000 debt they owe small-time hood Jimmy (Terrence Howard).

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

If you're not in on the plan, you're out. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The elephant and mouse joke Bryce tells Nick in the bar is later repeated in Centre Stage (2000). See more »

Goofs

Brice wears glasses when in a bar with Nick and at the house when Nick arrives until they go down stairs when he's seen without them on then he's got them on again when he enters the basement but he's got them on again when standing by the pool table. See more »

Quotes

Nick: You know, not everything in the world revolves around fucking.
Bryce: No, just most things.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The DVD contains some deleted scenes:
  • Alternate Opening Titles featuring a vagrant named Cal, riding a bicycle decorated with recycling goods.
  • At the pool Nick and Bryce discuss what to do with Lissa.
  • Cal collects some tins.
  • Nick and Lissa sell the belongings of Nicks's deceased father.
  • An extended version of the scene where Nick and Lissa plan to leave Tropico. Here Lissa tells Nick that she wants to get out at all cost.
  • A longer version of the scene on the roof of the hotel which fleshes out Lissa's devotion to Nick.
  • An extended version of the scene where Nick and Lissa plan the robbery.
  • Nick kills some time, buys some cigarettes and inadvertently starts the bush fire.
  • An alternate ending which is not as clearly positive as in the final film, but is instead "hopeful".
See more »

Connections

References Airplane! (1980) See more »

Soundtracks

Why Can't He Be You
Written by Hank Cochran
Performed by Patsy Cline
Courtesy of MCA Records
Under license from Universal Music Special Markets
See more »

User Reviews

 
Middle of the Road

The only reason I watched this is because my girlfriend threatened me to. This is movie is sooo desperate to be a post modern crime thriller that it looks and feels so relentlessly superficial.

Most scenes are decked out in unpleasant pastel colors and interiors are always lit with warm lights. It's nice to look at but has a student filmmaking feel to it that distracts me.

Something else that is quite unreal is the scene in which Nivola and Witherspoon discuss their forthcoming crime...on a roof in front of a neon sign on a sofa. Yeah...like people keep sofas on roofs in front of neon signs. This was obviously an attempt by the director to add a little sparkle to an otherwise BORING scene. Which is also the reason he throws in some cliched camera angles. It's a "film noir" you see...so diagonal shots on an ordinary scene are standard.

Composer Craig Armstrong was obviously hired at the last minute when the director heard the score for Romeo and Juliet to provide a superficial (that word again) soundtrack. It sounds like it belongs in a totally different movie. But perhaps this is a good thing. There isn't much theme but the music does evoke some weird feelings from us. Much like the feelings the characters have. It's cool and I wish more scores were this way.

The "twist" wasn't too obvious to me. Once it occurs it takes away all the tension and stress right away and will relieve you big time. It even manages to change the tone of the whole movie to light-hearted.

In case your wondering my girlfriend lists this as number 2 in her top 3 movies. Number 1 is Devils Advocate and 3 is Moonwalker...ugh!


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

14 May 1999 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Best Laid Plans See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$7,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$14,872, 12 September 1999

Gross USA:

$27,816

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$27,816
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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