Now available on VOD and in select theaters is Drafthouse Films’ dark thriller/comedy Cheap Thrills starring Pat Healy, Ethan Embry, David Koechner, and Sara Paxton. I watched the film last night and, while not for the faint of heart or stomach, I can’t recommend it enough. At its core, Thrills works from a single question: how far would you go to be able to provide for yourself and/or your family? It uses precision pacing, confident direction from E.L. Katz, and solid performances across the board to explore this question, all while gradually rising to a crescendo that feels both inevitable and wildly inventive. Offhand I can’t think of a film that blends the thrilling and the disgusting, excitement and repulsion, in a more entertaining way than Cheap Thrills. Regardless of whether you want to or not (and I don’t think you will), this is a movie you won’t soon forget.
In addition to talking a bit more about Cheap Thrills with Matt’s review and a couple of interviews, this week’s Top 5 also highlights our set visit coverage for Godzilla, Matt’s review of Divergent plus interviews with Shailene Woodley and more, the final trailer for The Amazing Spider-Man 2, and Muppets Most Wanted interviews with Tina Fey among others. Read on for a brief recap and link to everything I mention above.
There’s nothing better than a film that grabs you by the throat and knocks you square on your ass. Cheap Thrills, out now on VOD and in select theaters, is one of those all too rare films. Director E.L. Katz takes a simple premise – a pair of old friends who’ve fallen on hard times participate in a series of escalating dares for fast cash – and turns it into a brutal, funny, surprisingly emotional, and occasionally deranged exploration of just how low we’ll go when fueled by desperation. Cheap Thrills stars David Koechner, Pat Healy, Ethan Embry and Sara Paxton.
At a recent LA press day I had the opportunity to sit down for an exclusive interview with actors Pat Healy and Ethan Embry. They talked about how the film defies genre labels, what attracted them to their roles, how the watching experience holds up across different media, making a film their proud of, and more. Check out what they had to say after the jump.
Cheap Thrills wouldn’t have half of its impact before the 2008 crash. At the very least, it would be far less resonant and more confusing. Sure, not everyone was living it up before 2008, but there was the sense of being able to get a job, and it was less obvious that 99% of the country was being ruled by the remaining 1%. We’re now in desperate times demanding desperate measures and the dark comedy of Cheap Thrills perfectly plays into our despair. Although it keeps hitting the same thematic notes, those notes becomes louder as director E.L. Katz and screenwriters David Chirchirillo and Trent Haaga implicate the audience’s desire for not only more money, but more disturbing entertainment.
Along with the news that Drafthouse Films has acquired E.L. Katz’s directorial debut Cheap Thrills for a theatrical release, we also have the green and red-band trailers for the film to share with you, along with the first poster. Cheap Thrills stars Pat Healey (Compliance) as a man who attempts to drink his financial troubles away with an old friend (Ethan Embry), until the pair encounters a mysterious and wealthy husband and wife (David Koechner and Sara Paxton) who challenge them to increasingly dangerous dares in exchange for money.
Cheap Thrills opens in limited release starting March 21, 2014. Hit the jump for both trailers, the poster and more.
With new episodes of the ABC fantasy series Once Upon A Time back on the air, things will start ramping up rather quickly for the residents of Storybrooke. As these Fairy Tale characters learn to adjust to their lives in the quiet, little New England town, they will learn that there are things even more evil than they had ever imagined.
During this recent interview, show creators Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz talked about how long it will be before Regina (Lana Parrilla) realizes what Cora (Barbara Hershey) is up to, what’s in store for Rumplestiltskin (Robert Carlyle) and Belle (Emilie de Ravin), whether or not Snow (Ginnifer Goodwin) and Charming (Josh Dallas) will stay reunited for awhile, how Emma (Jennifer Morrison) is coping with the new elements of her life, what’s to come for Hook (Colin O’Donoghue), the addition of Ethan Embry and Downton Abbey star Lesley Nichols in mysterious roles, and when viewers might see the character of Ariel make an appearance. Check out what they had to say after the jump, and be aware that there are some spoilers.
Last year, we brought you loads of coverage from AFM (American Film Market). AFM is where buyers and sellers do business to bring you the films you might be seeing in the near future. They use artwork and synopses which are used for promotional purposes but which we use to bring you news on these films. With this year’s AFM gearing up, we have artwork and synopsis on four upcoming movies: On the Inside starring Nick Stahl and Olivia Wilde; The Witches of Oz (which is actually a mini-series) starring Christopher Lloyd, Sean Astin, Billy Boyd, and Lance Henriksen; The Eagle Path written, produced, directed by, and starring Jean-Claude Van Damme; and Bridge to Nowhere starring Ving Rhames, Danny Masterson, and Bijou Phillipps, and directed by Blair Underwood.
Hit the jump for artwork and synopses for these films plus a trailer for Bridge to Nowhere. Look for a lot more AFM coverage soon.