Film Scouts Reviews

"A Simple Plan"

by Jason Gorber

Books from
Buy The Book.

Music from
Buy The Soundtrack.

A long time collaborator with the Coen brothers, Raimi's film is a
pastiche of many of the elements that made films like FARGO so
enjoyable. Incompetence, treachery, shotguns and snow can often make
for a good movie, but hampered by yet another cardboard performance by
Bill "I'm NOT Chet anymore!" Paxton the simple plan turns into a
simple thriller/bloodbath flick.

The Coen's, of course, make their language and dialogue foremost in
even their bloodiest films. The script Raimi worked with (with a cast
he inherited from the film's first director, Robert Towne) lacks any
of the quirky dialogue that would set this film apart. Essentially a
remake of TREASURE OF THE SIERRA MADRE, this morality play could have
learned much from the wonderful language of the Bogart film.

While Billy Bob Thornton steals the show (in a role quite similar to
the one he brilliantly plays in Jarmusch's DEAD MAN, though this time
he's got nasty brown glasses) the rest of the characters are quite
two-dimensional. As each character that we meet systematically gets
killed, you care less and less about any of these people surviving.
In the end, the plot is about a simple plan that became complicated.
Ironically, the film itself, posing as a complicated film, could have
under stronger direction and with better writing, could have been much
more than its simple self.

Back to 1998 Toronto Film Festival Reviews

Back to A Simple Plan

Back to the Press Room

Look for Search Tips

Copyright 1994-2008 Film Scouts LLC
Created, produced, and published by Film Scouts LLC
Film Scouts® is a registered trademark of Film Scouts LLC
All rights reserved.

Suggestions? Comments? Fill out our Feedback Form.