Review: Cheap Thrills (2013)

Cheap Thrills

E.L. Katz’ directorial debut Cheap Thrills is a twisted and sadistic horror comedy that brilliantly blends social commentary with debauched hilarity. Newly unemployed, Craig (Pat Healy) drowns his sorrows in a seedy bar, where he bumps into old friend Vince (Ethan Embry). The two soon find themselves in cahoots with a rich married couple, whose promise of money and depraved idea of fun soon exposes their true colours. Enlivened by brilliant performances from its four leads (David Koechner relishes his role as one half of the married couple), Cheap Thrills is a trashy, out-and-out romp come depraved social experiment that cleverly addresses difficult themes and morality questions. Katz shows a confident hand in the directors chair, using enclosed spaces and intrusive camera work to establish a terrific sense of tension. It occasionally veers into the intolerable, but more often than not Cheap Thrills is an irresistible delight that excites and perturbs in equal measures.

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