4 Stars
Year Released: 1998
MPAA Rating: R
Running Time: 121 minutes
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Who would’ve thought that the same filmmaker who brought us the flying eyeball POV shot could have directed such a mature film as this one? And yet, Sam Raimi has done just that with A Simple Plan, a radical stylistic departure from his previous films. No “shaky cams” or frantic dolly shots here — strictly meat and potatoes filmmaking as Raimi makes a serious bid for mainstream acceptance. Hank (Bill Paxton), his brother Jacob (Billy Bob Thorton) and his friend Lou find a plane half-buried in the snow out in the middle of nowhere. A search of the craft reveals a dead pilot and over $4 million in cash. The three men decide to keep the money and Hank suggests that he hold onto it until they know if anyone is looking for it. Predictably, fear, greed, and paranoia begins to disintegrate their agreement. If this premise sounds familiar so does the snowy landscape and small-town setting — hallmarks of long time Raimi pals, the Coen brothers and their film, Fargo (1996). While A Simple Plan is no Fargo, it does contain a strong performance from Billy Bob Thorton, and prove that Raimi is capable of more than an endless series of Evil Dead sequels

Posted on September 28, 1998 in Reviews by

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