Runtime: 2 Hours
and 1 Minute
"A Simple Plan" is a scary film, one that takes easygoing
characters who get by on little and turns them into bloodthirsty animals
who will kill friends and family alike. If this movie offends people,
perhaps it's because this could really happen. This movie is scarier
than any recent horror movie I've seen, not because of gore and serial
killings, but because of what some people will do for money.
Three people -- two brothers and a friend -- find $4 million in a
downed airplane on a snow-covered forest. They decide to keep the
money, but they want to hold onto it for a few months until the news
of the missing plane has passed.
This gets things going. Along the way, one of the trio will demand
his money earlier than expected. Another will say the wrong thing
to a police officer. One will murder a potential eyewitness and concoct
a plan to blackmail another.
Meanwhile, one wife grows accustomed to the idea of having all the
money they'll need. This character, as played by Bridget Fonda, has
a great scene where she tells her husband how she'd return money that
she'd found if it wasn't hers. Then the money is emptied right in
front of her, and suddenly, her attitude changes.
Another wife will become the victim of a brutal murder where the details
are altered to make it look like a domestic dispute.
And finally, one of the original finders of the money changes his
attitude about it. He spends his days drinking too much and feeling
There is not a single flawed performance in this film. Billy Bob Thornton
was absolutely ROBBED of an Oscar for his performance. His speech
about how money might get him women is desperate and sad, but comes
off sincere and touching.
This movie shows how good people can do evil things. It's not a feel-good
movie. The end, especially, is quite sad. But it's an important movie
that shows exactly how out-of-hand things can get once you throw money
into the fray.
My personal pick for best movie of 1998.