STUDIO:  Lionsgate
MSRP: $27.98
RUNNING TIME: 108 minutes

  • Audio Commentary with Writer/Director Stephen Milburn Anderson
  • The Making of Ca$h
  • Deleted and Extended Scenes

The Pitch

When it comes to cash, no one can be trusted. And as we all know: cash rules everything around me, C.R.E.A.M., get the money, dollar, dollar bill y’all!

The Humans

Sean Bean, Chris Hemsworth, Victoria Profeta, Glenn Plummer, & Tim Kazurinsky as Chunky Chicken Guy

The Nutshell

Ca$h stars Sean Bean as devious criminal Pyke Kubic and his twin brother, Reice Kubic. Reice Pyke pulls a botched bank heist and ends up running from the cops. During the pursuit, he decides to throw the money over the side of a freeway overpass and proceeds to trick his partner into getting killed as he gets taken into custody. In jail, he gets a visit from his twin brother, newly arrived in town with the intent to help a twin brother out.

Through a series of flashbacks, we see that the case containing the C-Notes tossed out the window landed on the beat-up hood of Sam (Hemsworth) Phelan’s family truckster (complete with wood paneling). Sam and his wife Leslie (Profeta) are hard up for duckets. They are $7,000 behind in their mortgage, and running out of options. After having an ill-acted tantrum, he realizes there is a nice sum of dinero in the case, and proceeds to go home to his wife and they instantly begin to spend the moolah. They pay off their late fees, buy new furniture and a flat screen TV, but most importantly, they buy a new car.

So we finish the 6 hour workout and I say to my trainer “I can’t do this anymore, I’m Thor!” Get it?! Get it??!

Well, the Kubic Brothers (Bean x 2) know that the first thing that someone purchases with Benjamins that are not theirs will be a new car. Sure enough, Pyke is able to track down recent customers who have hit up the local dealerships with greenback purchases, and visits each one to see who traded in an old truckster and bought a new car. After a short stint tormenting Glen the Plumber (played convincingly by Glenn Plummer!), he gets to the Phelans. They make it quickly known that they love their new Land Rover, and were pleased to get rid of the old Griswold hand-me-down. This sends Mr. Kubic into action.

Thus begins the meat of the film. Kubic wants ALL of the 680 Large for him and his brother. So he makes the Phelans get all the bones back by any means necessary. The Phelans are asked nicely to do whatever it takes to return the portion of the doll-hairs they took and return it to the case. As they begin to run out of ways to legally get some of the banknotes back, they are forced to take drastic measures to replace it, or they will face the wrath of Pyke.

It is little known fact that Sean Bean trained under the tutelage of Master Ninja, Michael Dudikoff.

The Lowdown

The Pyke character really moves this story along. He is mysterious in his motives, and sinister in his delivery. Very subdued and matter-of-factly detailing what is going to happen next with the Phelans lends the story to follow a crisp pace. It’s a pace that continually gets more and more involved as everyone becomes more desperate to collect all of the stolen money. Hemsworth and Profeta are acceptable as the married couple in trouble, and although their actions are sometimes far-fetched, they are never stupid or outrageous within the confines of the story.  When things get hairy, there is an understanding that this is the direction the film was heading in, so you believe that what develops is accurate for the characters.
And this is one of the problems with Ca$h. There’s a conflict in this film. Pyke is unpredictable as you can never tell if his motivations are legitimate. He seems to be on the level, but mysteriously giving orders in a subtle way. And then the story takes you down the familiar path that you expected all along. There are some good scenes along the way, but overall you know what’s going to transpire, and nothing is ever shocking. It’s fun, but it feels familiar when is said and done. There is no doubt that the closing shot of the film will be no surprise, and what you expected all along.

This was the sound he made! That rubbery-faced bastard made this crazy noise and became a bigger star than ever before. And look at me. Still ugly!

Another problem with Ca$h comes in the acting department. This film is propelled by Bean’s performance. He excels in the type villainous role that we know and love. He can do bad in his sleep, and he is still sharpe after all these years. Early in the film, when it’s most important to get a feeling for the Phelan couple, Hemsworth and Profeta come across as fake and trying too hard. As I waited to see the future-Thor’s introduction into a film he was headlining, I was hoping to see grab this role and command a presence on the screen. Well, his big intro is a temper tantrum in the street, and it comes across as phony, almost painful to watch. His wife, Profeta, is not any better. She struggles to show real emotion when she’s arguing with the bank manager early in the film. As the film progresses, they do get better, and I began to lose awareness of any lack of talent. But that may have been because of the overpowering stench of Bean.

Sean Bean carries the film, and the action and direction is handled adequately. Stephen Milburn Anderson, the writer and director, has been around for a while, and he puts together a concise adventure. The film is not as heavy as it looks, and has light-hearted tone with some comedic bits early to lighten the mood. The jazzy soundtrack plays on the sense that everything is cool, which helps to distract from the intentions of Pyke. Ca$h is a fun film, and although predictable, it is an enjoyable trip.

Successful Film Fact #217: Two Beans are better than one.

The Package

The audio commentary with the creator of Ca$h, Stephen Milburn Anderson, is pretty direct. As this wasn’t a wide release (it only hit 27 screens, at one of which I almost saw a preview) you basically get a rundown of the story from the writers perspective. He basically reiterates the themes and plot points of the film from as viewers perspective. Since we’ve already seen the film, it just sounds like he’s talking about the movie as any viewer might. There is some insight, such as the development of twins by Bean, which is interesting, but mostly it’s a bore. There are deleted and extended scenes as well as a short Making Of documentary.

7 out of 10