A Simple Plan

by Tom Ingram

Genre Crime
People Sam Raimi d.; Scott Smith w.; Danny Elfman m.; Bill Paxton; Bridget Fonda; Billy Bob Thornton; Brent Briscoe; Chelcie Ross; Becky Ann Baker; Gary Cole
/10 7

Three small-town men (Paxton, Thornton, Briscoe) discover a wrecked airplane in the woods with a dead body and $4.4 million in a duffel bag inside. Based on the novel by Scott Smith.

A comparison with No Country For Old Men is illuminating. It’s essentially the same story (though this movie was released several years before McCarthy’s novel was written) and fills much the same purpose. The money, the moral compromises and ensuing deaths, the apocalyptic tone and ultimate pointlessness are all the same. But No Country the book and film are both superior.

It’s not bad, exactly, although it’s agonizing to watch for the same reason an episode of Seinfeld is. There are some pretty good performances and it’s fairly well-written. It’s just superfluous and not very exciting.

2h1m; 1998; Colour; Oscar nods for Supporting Actor (Thornton) and Adapted Screenplay (Smith)