Cheap Thrills

A failed writer (indie stalwart Pat Healy), facing eviction and fired from his job, drowns his sorrows at a neighborhood tavern, where he runs into an old friend (Ethan Embry) similarly down on his luck; the duo become a foursome when they start drinking with a sexy blond (Sara Paxton) and her wealthy husband (David Koechner), who starts throwing cash at the two pals to execute a series of increasingly gross and dangerous stunts. Screenwriters David Chirchirillo and Trent Haaga pose a simple question—how much will a person degrade himself to make ends meet?—but it’s a potent one, at least for those of us who ponder it every Monday through Friday. Koechner, a character actor so ubiquitous I wish he’d just go away, seldom gets a role this central or this juicy, and he acquits himself admirably, as do the other players. E.L. Katz directed.