6.7/10
16,607
65 user 200 critic

Cheap Thrills (2013)

Not Rated | | Comedy, Crime, Drama | 21 March 2014 (USA)
Trailer
1:05 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Prime Video

A scheming couple put a struggling family man and his old friend through a series of increasingly twisted dares over the course of an evening at a local bar.

Director:

E.L. Katz
9 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Compliance (2012)
Biography | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A normal Friday service at a fast food restaurant becomes interrupted by a police officer who claims an employee stole from a customer, but something more sinister is going on.

Director: Craig Zobel
Stars: Ann Dowd, Dreama Walker, Pat Healy
Drama | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

During the final days at the Yankee Pedlar Inn, two employees determined to reveal the hotel's haunted past begin to experience disturbing events as old guests check in for a stay.

Director: Ti West
Stars: Sara Paxton, Pat Healy, Kelly McGillis
13 Sins (2014)
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A cryptic phone call sets off a dangerous game of risks for Elliot, a down-on-his luck salesman. The game promises increasing rewards for completing 13 tasks, each more sinister than the last.

Director: Daniel Stamm
Stars: Mark Webber, Devon Graye, Tom Bower
Starry Eyes (2014)
Drama | Fantasy | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A hopeful young starlet uncovers the ominous origins of the Hollywood elite and enters into a deadly agreement in exchange for fame and fortune.

Directors: Kevin Kölsch, Dennis Widmyer
Stars: Alex Essoe, Amanda Fuller, Noah Segan
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

When Brent turns down his classmate Lola's invitation to the prom, she concocts a wildly violent plan for revenge.

Director: Sean Byrne
Stars: Xavier Samuel, Robin McLeavy, John Brumpton
The Overnight (2015)
Comedy | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

Alex, Emily, and their son, RJ, are new to Los Angeles. A chance meeting at the park introduces them to the mysterious Kurt, Charlotte, and Max. A family "playdate" becomes increasingly interesting as the night goes on.

Director: Patrick Brice
Stars: Adam Scott, Taylor Schilling, Jason Schwartzman
Drama | Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A struggling painter is possessed by satanic forces after he and his young family move into their dream home in rural Texas, in this creepy haunted-house tale.

Director: Sean Byrne
Stars: Ethan Embry, Shiri Appleby, Pruitt Taylor Vince
Comedy | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

When a man answers an advertisement to train as a record producer, he's excited by the prospect of signing undiscovered musicians, only to discover his new job isn't all it's cracked up to be.

Director: Craig Zobel
Stars: Pat Healy, Kene Holiday, John Baker
Chained I (2012)
Crime | Drama | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A young man held prisoner by a cab-driving serial killer must make a life or death choice between following in his captor's footsteps or breaking free.

Director: Jennifer Lynch
Stars: Vincent D'Onofrio, Eamon Farren, Evan Bird
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

In 1983, financially struggling college student Samantha Hughes takes a strange babysitting job that coincides with a full lunar eclipse. She slowly realizes her clients harbor a terrifying secret, putting her life in mortal danger.

Director: Ti West
Stars: Jocelin Donahue, Tom Noonan, Mary Woronov
Comedy | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

Another 26-chapter anthology that showcases death in all its vicious wonder and brutal beauty.

Directors: Rodney Ascher, Julian Barratt, and 29 more credits »
Stars: Eric Jacobus, Andy Nyman, Simon Barrett
The Sacrament (2013)
Horror | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A news team trails a man as he travels into the world of Eden Parish to find his missing sister, where it becomes apparent that this paradise may not be as it seems.

Director: Ti West
Stars: Joe Swanberg, AJ Bowen, Kentucker Audley
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
Pat Healy ... Craig Daniels
Sara Paxton ... Violet
Ethan Embry ... Vince
David Koechner ... Colin
Amanda Fuller ... Audrey Daniels
Laura Covelli ... Caryn the Bartender
Todd Farmer ... Security Guard
Elissa Dowling ... Tweaker
Eric Neil Gutierrez Eric Neil Gutierrez ... Enrique
Ruben Pla ... Doug
Claudia Salinas ... Stripper
Brighton Sharbino ... Luann
Eli McLaughlin Eli McLaughlin ... Keenan
Butch Butch ... Cutie
Edit

Storyline

Craig (Pat Healy) is a struggling family man who loses his low-wage job and is threatened with eviction. In an effort to delay facing the music at home, he heads to a local bar and runs into an old friend (Ethan Embry). The 2 are roped into a round of drinks by a charismatic and obscenely wealthy stranger (David Koechner) along with his mysterious wife (Sara Paxton). The couple engages the pair friends in a series of innocent dares in exchange for money over the course of the evening, with each challenge upping the ante in both reward and boundaries. It seems like easy and much needed money, but the couple's twisted sense of humor pushes just how far Craig and his friend are willing to go for money and cheap thrills. Written by From Rotten tomatoes

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

What doesn't kill you makes you richer.


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

21 March 2014 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Apuestas perversas See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$200,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$18,638, 23 March 2014

Gross USA:

$59,424

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$59,424
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Pat Healy plays a twisted prankster in Compliance (2012), from the same year as this film. His character's name is "Officer Daniels" as apposed to "Craig Daniels" in this film. See more »

Goofs

At the beginning of the movie, we see Craig draining the oil from a car. He unscrews the sump plug and black, used motor oil flows from the sump. In the next shot, from another angle, the oil continues flowing, but it's visibly new, clear motor oil. See more »


Soundtracks

To Be Extremist
Written by: Jamie Schmitz & Ned Shatzer
Performed by: Wicked Hemlocks
Courtesy of: Wicked Hemlocks
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
A Brutal Dark Comedy; Not for the Squeamish
26 September 2014 | by brando647See all my reviews

I haven't felt this bad at the end of a movie since REQUIEM FOR A DREAM. This film, from E.L. Katz, is the ultimate feel-bad movie of the year. Believe it or not, I mean this all as praise. CHEAP THRILLS is a movie that drives its point home like a nail to the head. It's a dark comedy, emphasis on the dark, that aims to sensationalize the perceived apathy of the upper class to the suffering of the lower class, going so far as to take perverse joy in it. I never recall laughing over the course of the movie, but there were a few chuckles scattered amongst the groans and cringes. It opens on the worst day of Craig Daniels' (Pat Healy) unfortunate life. He wakes to an eviction notice posted to the door of the apartment where he lives with his wife and baby, and he's fired from his menial job at an auto shop later that afternoon. While he's drinking his problems away at a seedy bar later that night, he's reunited with an old friend, Vince (Ethan Embry) who earns a living rough housing gamblers to collect on debts. The night shifts in an interesting direction when they meet Colin (David Koechner) and his wife Violet (Sara Paxton), out on the town to celebrate Violet's birthday with some harmless. Colin and Violet enjoy betting each other on the pettiest of prospects (i.e. how a bar patron chooses to ogle the bartender), and they see an opportunity to have some fun with Craig and Vince. It starts simple…who can drink their shot of tequila the fastest or who's willing to slap a stripper on the butt… but, as the night goes on, the game grows more sinister.

CHEAP THRILLS wears its message on its sleeve. It's a frightening glimpse at the power of money and the lengths some will go to get it, but it's also a statement on what passes for entertainment now. The first point is the most blatant, as it's basically the premise of the movie. Colin and Violet are filthy rich. We don't know how he acquired his money; we just know he's got $250,000 chilling in an unlocked safe in his office for the sole purpose of blowing on his wife's birthday. Money is nothing to these people. But for the common man (in this instance, Craig and Vince), money is everything. Craig has a family to look out for and every cent earned goes toward securing their future. Vince is a thug who'd made some poor choices and sees a chance at a better life. At first it's all a game, but then it all goes south and the greed takes hold. Meanwhile, Colin cheers them on like a man watching the latest UFC fight at the local bar and Violet…well…Violet's chilling. She says very little over the course of the night but it quickly becomes apparent that there's something disturbing under her gorgeous visage. She's calm and collected, often seeming disinterested in the events unfolding around her. Again, it's all a game to these two and Violet shows a chilling disconnect from Craig and Vince's pain.

But, really, the audience isn't much better. The premise of CHEAP THRILLS reminds me a lot of modern culture's obsession with reality television. Average people are paraded about and put into often uncomfortable situations with the promise of potentially walking away with a nice chunk of change. People have no problem going on national television for the amusement of others to chow on bull testicles or knock themselves around in some bizarre obstacle course for the chance at wealth. Well, it's no different than what Craig and Vince endure in CHEAP THRILLS. Colin and Violet aren't any better than the general reality TV audience except, you know, their pretty evil. Things get insane here. This is definitely not a film for the feint of heart. I'm not the queasy sort of dude but there was some stuff here that had me gritting my teeth. This movie is determined to show the ugliness of greed and how it corrupts even the best intentions. This becomes apparent in the final third of the movie when it's obvious there isn't really a "good" guy anymore. We essentially start rooting for Craig. He's the family man who needs the money to give them a life but, by the end, he's just as ruthless as Vince. If anything, Vince is the less sympathetic character but retains the most humanity in the final moments. CHEAP THRILLS is a punch to the gut with a cast of characters that's impossible to associate with and it leaves a sour taste in your mouth when the end credits roll, but it's an entertaining funhouse mirror of a movie that goes off the rails to reflect some of the darkest elements of our culture.


13 of 15 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 65 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Free Movies and TV Shows You Can Watch Now

On IMDb TV, you can catch Hollywood hits and popular TV series at no cost. Select any poster below to play the movie, totally free!

Browse free movies and TV series

Stream Popular Action and Adventure Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular action and adventure titles available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed