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Cruel Intentions (1999)

R | | Drama, Romance | 5 March 1999 (USA)
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In 13 theaters near Ashburn VA US [change]

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Two vicious step-siblings of an elite Manhattan prep school make a wager: to deflower the new headmaster's daughter before the start of term.

Director:

Roger Kumble

Writers:

Choderlos de Laclos (novel), Roger Kumble (screenplay)
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Popularity
225 ( 402)
7 wins & 14 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Sarah Michelle Gellar ... Kathryn Merteuil
Ryan Phillippe ... Sebastian Valmont
Reese Witherspoon ... Annette Hargrove
Selma Blair ... Cecile Caldwell
Louise Fletcher ... Helen Rosemond
Joshua Jackson ... Blaine Tuttle
Eric Mabius ... Greg McConnell
Sean Patrick Thomas ... Ronald Clifford
Swoosie Kurtz ... Dr. Greenbaum
Christine Baranski ... Bunny Caldwell
Alaina Reed-Hall ... Nurse (as Alaina Reed Hall)
Deborah Offner ... Mrs. Michalak
Tara Reid ... Marci Greenbaum
Herta Ware Herta Ware ... Mrs. Sugarman
Hiep Thi Le ... Mai-Lee
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Storyline

Kathryn Merteuil and Sebastian Valmont are seductive, manipulative step-siblings who get what they want when they want it. Kathryn makes a bet with Sebastian: Sebastian must bed Annette, daughter of the headmaster at their school, before the end of summer break. Annette has stated that she would wait until love and marriage to sleep with a man. If Kathryn wins, she gets Sebastian's vintage 1959 Jaguar Roadster. If Sebastian wins, he gets Kathryn, the only girl he knows he'll never have. Also in play is Cecile, a naïve girl whose mother had enlisted Kathryn to help her fit in at her new school. However, Kathryn (with Sebastian's help) plans to ruin Cecile's reputation as revenge on Kat's ex-boyfriend, who left her for Cecile.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Are you in, or are you out? See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sexual dialogue and sexual situations involving teens, language and drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Vietnamese | French

Release Date:

5 March 1999 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Cruel Inventions See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$10,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$13,020,565, 7 March 1999, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$38,328,567

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$75,902,208
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Writer and Director Roger Kumble initially wrote the script in twelve days. See more »

Goofs

During the "up and down, back and forth" scene in the park, you can see the light screen reflected on the sunglasses. See more »

Quotes

Kathryn: Oh, Sebastian? That little wager of yours? Count me in.
Sebastian: What are the terms?
Kathryn: If I win, then that hot little car of yours is mine.
Sebastian: And if I win?
Kathryn: [Takes off her jacket to reveal a skimpy-looking tank top] I'll give you something you've been obsessing about ever since our parents got married.
Sebastian: Be more specific.
Kathryn: In English? I'll fuck your brains out.
Sebastian: [a little shocked for a moment, recovers] What makes you think I'll go for that bet? That is a 1956 Jaguar Roadster.
Kathryn: Because I'm the only person you can't...
[...]
See more »

Alternate Versions

In the Italian version the kiss between Kathryn and Cecile is censored: the second try Kathryn makes to teach Cecile french kissing is cut; she takes off the sunglasses, but in the next scene she has them on again. See more »

Connections

Featured in Best! Movies! Ever!: Kisses (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

Bittersweet Symphony
Performed by The Andrew Oldham Orchestra
Licensed courtesy of The Decca Record Company Ltd.
Vocals by Richard Ashcroft
Courtesy of VC Records T/A Hut Recordings/Virgin Records Limited
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Clever, witty and very sensual
2 May 2010 | by BernardoLimaSee all my reviews

In this film wealthy prep school student Kathryn (Sarah Michelle Gellar) bets her stepbrother Sebastian (Ryan Phillipe) that he can't deflower the virginal Annette (Reese Witherspoon) before the school year begins. If he fails to accomplish this task, Kathryn gets his Jaguar Roadster; if he succeeds, he gets an evening of pleasure with Kathryn.

I just finished watching Cruel Intentions and what a pleasant surprise this film turned out to be. I guess the best way to describe it is as a sexy and seductive thriller. The film is very clever and bold but above all, extremely engaging and entertaining. Dealing with this kind of subject...making this kind of film...it's definitely not easy. Usually these kind of films come off somewhat "fake" and lame; corny, whatever you want to call it. Thankfully, Cruel Intentions went the other way, probably thanks to the witty and sharp dialogue and a very good direction.

Ryan Phillippe delivered a terrific performance and so did Reese Witherspoon. I was actually a bit disappointed with Sarah Michelle Gellar, her acting was not very convincing at times to say the least but honestly, the story is so engaging that I was able to overlook that flaw. Another aspect that really took me by surprise was the musical score. Cruel Intentions has one of the best soundtracks I have ever seen in films. There's some great well known songs like Skunk Anansie's "secretly" and Placebo's "every me and every you", but there's also some fast paced instrumental tracks throughout the film that really compliment the scenes. Overall, a great watch and so much more then a teen film.

7.5/10


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