Excerpt: Koch Media bring "Cheap Thrills" to DVD for UK audiences in the original aspect ratio of 2.35:1. The transfer is anamorphic, but unfortunately it is a NTSC->PAL conversion, unlike Koch Media's standard PAL German release. The most unfortunate thing with this NTSC->PAL transfer, is that we unfortunately get quite a lot of combing and interlacing.
Conclusion: 'Cheap Thrills' takes a simple concept and turns it into an interesting and twisted commentary on the deplorable state many people find themselves in financially. The surface-level subtext is handled nicely, without being overbearing or too obtrusive. While the movie delves into disgusting territory, it does so with the intent of achieving something more than simply being distasteful. With nice image, great audio, some really nice extras, this comes recommended.
Excerpt: Ever had a competitive game of charades descend into a knife fight? Cheap Thrills might be for you. First-time director E.L. Katz carves a spiralling tale that bleeds desperation and demented humour, while literally increasing the stakes at each step. Here�s the �American Dream� on a platter: collapsed, damaged, then shoved down a chute for a final humiliation.
Conclusion: Several members of the premiere audience interviewed in the "Vital Heat" documentary, including actor Elijah Wood, observe that Cheap Thrills is best seen with an audience, because group reaction to its most intense scenes improves the experience. They make a good point, but except for midnight showings at the Alamo Drafthouse, most viewers will experience the film alone or with a few viewing companions in the privacy of a home theater.
Excerpt: In the aptly-named shock-comedy Cheap Thrills , we meet the mild-mannered Craig (Pat Healy), a wallflower with a diminished bank account. In the film’s opening scene, he brandishes a $20 bill, but the money’s exit from his wallet might as well be accompanied by a cartoon moth, for it’s the type of wallet that never truly carries many twenties. He heads to work in the morning, but not before catching the eviction notice on his door.
Excerpt: E.L. Katz's Cheap Thrills is a very effective piece of body horror, teasing in its attempts to keep the audience guessing, but the cruel irresistibility of its premise wears itself out before the film's final minutes. Pat Healy stars as Craig, a failed writer dismissed from his automechanic day job the same day he receives a threat-of-eviction notice.