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Cruel Intentions (1999)

R | | Drama, Romance | 5 March 1999 (USA)
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2:20 | Trailer
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
1,573 ( 8)
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:

What you can't have, you can't resist. 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

Gross USA:

$38,773,785

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$76,347,426
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 was inspired by Welcome to the Dollhouse (1995). He felt he had never seen anything like it, "so dark", "fucked up high school". It quickly led him to the thought of doing a new adaptation of "Les Liaisons Dangereuses", but set in high school. See more »

Goofs

When Bunny is arguing with Ronald, she remarks, "My husband and I gave money to Colin Powell!" Colin Powell has never run for public office to accept contributions for. See more »

Quotes

Helen Rosemont: Sebaaaastian!
Sebastian: [Under his breath] Aw fuck me.
[Hugging Helen]
Sebastian: Aunt Helen! God I've missed you!
See more »

Alternate Versions

In the basic cable version, the scence where Kathrine is telling Bunny about the letters Cecil has recieved from Ronald, the sales woman ask Kathrine if she'll be taking the dress she was looking at when Ms. Caldwell first come into the store, Kathrine says yes, then pulls out her wallet and tells the sales lady that she has forgotten her credit card, Bunny hands the sales lady her card and tells Kathrine it's the least she could do for telling her about Cecil and Ronald. The scene where Kathrine and Sebastian pull Ronald in to talk to them she's wearing the dress. See more »

Connections

Version of Valmont (1989) See more »

Soundtracks

Addictive
Written by Pauline Taylor, Maxi Jazz (as Maxi Jaxx), Roland 'Rollo' Armstrong (as Rollo Armstrong) and Sister Bliss (as Ayalah Bentovim)
Performed by Faithless
Courtesy of Cheeky Records/Arista Records Inc.
Published by Champion Music, BMG Music Publishing Ltd/BMG Songs Inc. & WB Music Corp./Warner Chappell Music Ltd.
Contains a large sample of Pauline Taylor's "Addicted"
Written and Performed by Pauline Taylor
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A fantastic update about the rules of seduction
14 August 2001 | by Smells_Like_CheeseSee all my reviews

Cruel Intentions was my favorite movie when I was 14, to me it was everything I just wanted to be as a teen, despite how cruel and manipulative Katheryn was, I thought she was the coolest and strongest female character I'd ever seen on film. Now a couple years afterwards I read the book and saw the original Dangerous Liasons with John Malkovich and Glenn Close, I still very much enjoy Cruel Intentions. Like I said, this was just a terrific updated version of the ultimate story of love and betrayal, it was a little Dawson's Creek at times, but from what angle they went at, it was understandable. It had the biggest stars: Sarah Michelle Gellar, Ryan Phillipe, Reese Withersppon, Tara Reid, Joshua Jackson, and Selma Blair. May I say they gave extremely impressive performances, but the best without a doubt goes to Sarah Michelle Gellar, she was just ultimately brilliant as Kathryn Muertiel, the cruelist girl in school who's goal isn't to be the most popular, but to dominate everyone's innocence.

Kathryn and Sebastion are step brother and sister, they have a partnership together to work the school into a total wave of turning the most innocent into the most corrupted. They also have a love for each other, but Kathryn is the only girl Sebastian can't have, it kills him and she teases him constantly over it. Kathryn asks Sebastian if he could help her corrupt the girl that took her boyfriend, Cecil, a naive young girl who is under Kathryn's wing, but isn't aware of her intentions. But the plot thickens when Kathryn finds out that Cecil is in love with her black music teacher which her mother wouldn't like very much. Then Sebastian finds a girl, Annette, who believes that people shouldn't experience the act of love until they are in love. He and Kathryn make a bet while he seduces Cecil, that if he can corrupt Annette, he gets to bed Kathryn. But there's one problem, he might be in over his head when he starts to fall in love with Annette.

Cruel Intentions is a great movie with good, strong performances. For what might have been a typical teen movie, this was just a good idea on where the director made decisions on how to make the story real. It's very romantic, heart breaking, and even has it's dark comedic moments for a little breath of air. I will always recommend this film to anyone, it's a great story. I would also highly recommend to watch Dangerous Liasons along with Cruel Intentions, so you have a little bit of a different variety. You'll find yourself a bit seduced with these movies.

9/10


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