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Cruel Intentions

Theatrical release poster
Directed by Roger Kumble
Produced by Neal H. Moritz
Written by Choderlos de Laclos (novel)
Roger Kumble (screenplay)
Starring Sarah Michelle Gellar
Ryan Phillippe
Reese Witherspoon
Selma Blair
Louise Fletcher
Swoosie Kurtz
Sean Patrick Thomas
Christine Baranski
Music by Ed Shearmur
Cinematography Theo van de Sande
Editing by Jeff Freeman
Distributed by Columbia Pictures
Release date(s) March 5, 1999
Running time 97 minutes
Country  United States
Language English
Budget $11,000,000
Followed by Cruel Intentions 2

Cruel Intentions is a 1999 American feature film starring Ryan Phillippe, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Reese Witherspoon, and Selma Blair. The movie is a comedic and dramatic appropriation of the 18th-century French epistolary novel Les Liaisons dangereuses by Laclos, but unlike other modern film versions of the novel set in the France of that time (such as Dangerous Liaisons and Valmont), Cruel Intentions is set among the wealthy teenagers living in modern New York City. The plot is mainly driven by a bet held between the two main characters, and it heavily involves manipulation, seduction, and love in a rich and sophisticated socially elite youth atmosphere. The film started as an independent film with a much smaller budget, and was later picked up by Columbia Pictures. The film was released on March 5, 1999. It was later followed by two direct-to-video films: a prequel, Cruel Intentions 2, and a sequel, Cruel Intentions 3.

The Collin Theatre Center in Plano, TX will hold the World Premiere of a new stage adaptation of the movie on April 29, 2009. [1]

Contents

Plot

Kathryn Merteuil (Sarah Michelle Gellar), the image of social perfection, takes the sheltered and naïve Cecile Caldwell (Selma Blair) under her wing, promising to turn Cecile into a model student like herself. Kathryn's real intention, however, is to take revenge on Court Reynolds, her ex-lover, who dumped her for the "innocent little twit" Cecile. She intends to corrupt Cecile by getting her to sleep with as many men as possible, thereby destroying her reputation and teaching Court a lesson.

She asks for the help of her womanizing step-brother, Sebastian Valmont (Ryan Phillippe). Though Kathryn and Sebastian have collaborated in schemes of manipulation before, he initially refuses. He is busy planning another "conquest," the beautiful Annette Hargrove (Reese Witherspoon), a girl who has published a manifesto saying that she plans to keep her virginity intact until she is in love.

Kathryn does not think Sebastian has a chance with Annette, so they make a wager. If Kathryn wins, she gets Sebastian's vintage Jaguar, a 1956 XK140 Roadster; if Sebastian wins, she offers him a night of passion with her, as Kathryn knows she is the only girl Sebastian cannot bed. Sebastian initially rejects this deal, being very enamored of his car, but relents when Kathryn ups the ante, telling him that he can "put it anywhere."

Ronald Clifford (Sean Patrick Thomas), Cecile's music teacher for the summer, is also smitten with Cecile, and Kathryn makes arrangements for Ronald and Cecile to spend time together, hoping that he will take Cecile's virginity.

Sebastian, meanwhile, has a hard time seducing Annette. Though they have chemistry, she sees right through him and rejects his advances. Sebastian learns that Annette has been forewarned of his libertine ways by none other than Cecile's mother, Mrs. Caldwell (Christine Baranski). Wanting revenge, he joins Kathryn in her plans to corrupt Cecile.

Kathryn engineers Ronald's break-up with Cecile by informing Mrs. Caldwell of their flirtations; Mrs. Caldwell, a noted racist, quickly ends their affair. Sebastian, in turn, calls Cecile to his house, ostensibly to give her a letter from Ronald. Once at his house, Sebastian blackmails Cecile and performs oral sex on her. The next day, Cecile confides in Kathryn, who advises her to learn the art of sex from Sebastian so that she can make Ronald happy in bed.

Meanwhile, Sebastian genuinely begins to fall in love with Annette, who returns his feelings but still keeps her defenses up. Sebastian declares that Annette is a hypocrite, waiting for love but refusing to sleep with the guy that loves her. Confused and beaten by Sebastian's logic, Annette relents - but Sebastian, now feeling guilty, refuses her. Heartbroken and embarrassed, Annette flees his aunt's estate. Sebastian tracks her down and professes his love, and they consummate their feelings.

Kathryn offers herself to Sebastian the next day, since he has won the bet, but he refuses; his romantic focus is now on Annette. Jealous, Kathryn taunts him for having gone soft, then convinces him that his love for Annette is nothing more than a passing infatuation. Finally swayed by Kathryn's threat to ruin Annette's reputation, Sebastian coldly breaks up with Annette and returns to Kathryn. Kathryn, however, now refuses to sleep with him. After Sebastian tells Kathryn that he has arranged for Cecile and Ronald to be together, Kathryn reveals that she has known all along that he was truly in love with Annette, yet she manipulated him to give it up. While Sebastian may have initially won the bet, she made him lose his first true love, and she (Kathryn) does not sleep with "losers."

Sebastian realizes his mistake. After trying unsuccessfully to talk to Annette, he sends her his journal, in which he has detailed all his previous "conquests" but written his true feelings for Annette, hoping she will learn the truth for herself and forgive him.

Kathryn, meanwhile, informs Ronald of Sebastian's affair with Cecile; Kathryn also claims that Sebastian had hit her (although in a deleted scene Sebastian does hit her). A furious Ronald confronts Sebastian in the middle of the street and a fight ensues. Annette, in search of Sebastian, comes upon the fight and tries to stop it. She is thrown into the way of an oncoming cab. Sebastian pushes her to safety and is hit by the speeding cab himself. Annette rushes to his side. Before he dies, he professes his love for her, and she reciprocates.

The new school year is inaugurated with Sebastian's funeral. During the service, Kathryn gives a self-important speech to the school about how she had unsuccessfully tried to get Sebastian to mend his ways and become a model student like herself. Halfway through her speech, students start walking out. Flustered, Kathryn rushes outside the chapel, where Cecile is distributing copies of Sebastian's journal (entitled Cruel Intentions) to all the students. The journal shows all of Sebastian's inner thoughts: his conquests, his description of the bet, and a page on Kathryn, which finally exposes her manipulative and deceitful ways, including the fact that she hides a vial of cocaine in a crucifix she wears in the rosary beads around her neck. The headmaster takes Kathryn's crucifix and opens it, spilling the cocaine. Kathryn's spotless reputation is destroyed, and people finally see her for the troubled, callous mastermind that she is.

In the final shot, Annette drives away in Sebastian's Jaguar, putting his sunglasses on, with his journal by her side.

Reception

Critical reaction

The film received generally mixed reviews from critics. On Rotten Tomatoes, the film received a score of 47% positive reviews with a 5.3 of 10, based on 76 reviews.[2] At Metacritic, the film holds a score of 56% with a 8.7 from 10, based on 24 reviews.[3]

Charles Taylor of Salon.com described the film as "The Dirtiest-minded American movie in recent memory - and an honestly corrupt entertaining picture is never anything to sneeze at."[3] Stephen Holden The New York Times stated, "You have the queasy sense that the whole thing is just an elaborate stunt, and in this case an exploitative one."[3] Ernest Hardy of LA Weekly criticized the film and said, "In truth, the only reason this film was made was to allow viewers to ogle pretty young things behaving badly."[3]

Box office

Cruel Intentions was a commercial success. The film grossed $ 13,020,565 in its opening weekend, ranking # 2; released in 2,312 theaters, the movie raked in $ 75,902,208 worldwide.[4]

Awards and nominations

The film received the following awards and nominations:

Year Ceremony Category Result
2000 Blockbuster Entertainment Award Favorite Supporting Actress, Reese Witherspoon Won
Golden Slate Best Original Score Won
Best Actress in a Leading Role, Sarah Michelle Gellar Nominated
Best Movie Nominated
Best Movie Soundtrack Won
Best Teen Movie Nominated
MTV Movie Awards Best Female Performance, Sarah Michelle Gellar Won
Best Kiss: (Sarah Michelle Gellar, Selma Blair) Won
Best Male Performance, Ryan Phillippe Nominated
Best Villain, Sarah Michelle Gellar Nominated
Teen Choice Awards Best Film - Drama Won
Best Actor, Ryan Phillippe Nominated
Best Actress, Reese Witherspoon Nominated
Sexiest Love Scene: (Reese Witherspoon, Ryan Phillippe) Nominated

Soundtrack

References

External links


Quotes

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote

Cruel Intentions is a 1999 film about Kathryn Merteuil who makes a bet that her step-brother, Sebastian Valmont, won't be able to bed Annette Hargrove (a virgin, who wants to wait until love). If he loses, Kathryn gets his Jaguar, if he wins, he gets Kathryn. It's an adaptation of the French novel Les Liaisons Dangereuses, which was also the source material for the movie Dangerous Liasons (1988) (adapted by Christopher Hampton from his play) and Valmont (1989).

Directed and written by Roger Kumble.
In the game of seduction, There is only one rule: Never fall in love. Taglines

Contents

Kathryn Merteuil

  • Everybody loves me, and I intend to keep it that way.
  • Introduce her to your world of sex, drugs and...what else do you do?
  • She's quite cute, you know. Young, supple breasts, a tight, firm ass... uncharted booty... Be her Captain Picard, Valmont. Boldly go where no man has gone before.
  • I hate it when things don't go my way. It makes me so horny.
  • Keep your friends close, and your enemies closer.
  • When I'm through with Cecile, she'll be the premiere tramp of the New York area.
  • You're telling me you had the chance to fuck her and you didn't? God, are you a chump.
  • God forbid I exude confidence and enjoy sex! Do you think I relish the fact that I have to act like Mary Sunshine 24/7 so I can be considered a lady? I'm the Marcia-fucking-Brady of the Upper East Side, and sometimes I want to kill myself.
  • People don't change over night, you and I are two of a kind.
  • You're just a toy, Sebastian. A little toy I like to play with.
  • I think it's the saddest thing I ever heard. [Sips champagne] Tastes good.

Sebastian Valmont

  • We've done some pretty fucked up shit in our time but this... I mean, we're destroying an innocent girl. You do realize that?
  • [to his therapist]: You have killer legs. I'd love to photograph them...
  • I didn't know it was asshole day at the Valmont house.
  • I'm sick of sleeping with these insipid Manhattan debutantes. Nothing shocks them anymore.
  • [Letter to Annette] Dear Annette, I don't know what I could possibly say that would rectify the harm I've caused you. The truth of the matter is that being with you was the only time I have ever been happy. My whole life has been a joke. I prided myself on taking joy in others' misery. Well, it finally backfired. I succeed in hurting the first person I ever loved. Enclosed is my most prized possession. My journal. For a long time I considered it my trophy. A sordid collection of my conquests. If you really want to know the truth then please read it. No more lies. Please give me another chance. I'm a wreck without you.
  • You spend all your time preaching about waiting for love. Well here it is. Right in front of you, and you're going to turn your back on it. So I guess we're just fucked. I'll move on. But you are going to have to live the rest of your life knowing that you've turned your back on love. And that makes you a hypocrite. Have a nice life.
  • Well I'm in love

Others

  • Greg McConnell: What is this, Grandma with a birthday present? Suck it, you dumb bitch!
  • Blaine Tuttle: He used to sneak into my dorm room every month. We'd go at it for a little while, and then, as soon as he'd come, he'd start freaking out. "What are you doing, man? I'm not a fag. If you tell anybody, I'll kick your ass!" God. The only reason I let him keep up the charade is because the man's got a mouth like a hoover. Ooh!

Dialogue

Annette Hargrove: You know what your problem is? You take yourself way too seriously.
Sebastian Valmont: I do not.
Annette Hargrove: You should lighten up.
Sebastian Valmont: I am lightened, can we drop this?
Annette Hargrove: Okay. [Makes a funny, ridiculous face at Sebastian]
Sebastian Valmont: Will you stop that?
Annette Hargrove: [Continues to make a face]
Sebastian Valmont: Stop that, it's distracting. [starts to laugh]
Annette Hargrove: Are you laughing?
Sebastian Valmont: [seriously] No.
Annette Hargrove: No? [Makes another face, Sebastian begins to laugh and then regains control]
Annette Hargrove: It's okay, you can laugh, I promise I won't tell anyone. [smiles/smirks]

Cecile Caldwell: This sure doesn't taste like an iced tea.
Sebastian Valmont: It's from Long Island.

Sebastian Valmont: You AMAZE me.
Kathryn Merteuil: Eat me, Sebastian. It's okay for guys like you and Court to fuck everyone but when I do it, I get dumped for innocent little twits like Cecile. God forbid I exude confidence and enjoy sex. Do you think I relish the fact that I have to act like Mary Sunshine 24/7 so I can be considered a lady? I'm the Marcia fucking Brady of the Upper East Side, and sometimes I want to kill myself. So there's your psychoanalysis, Dr. Freud. Now tell me are you in, or are you out?

Sebastian Valmont: Ohh well, duty calls. Dr. Greenbalm and her daughter should make for interesting entry.
Kathryn Merteuil: Ohh, your journal. Could you be more queer?
Sebastian Valmont: Could you be more desperate to read it?

Kathryn Merteuil: Can I take my new car for a ride?
Sebastian Valmont: Kathryn, the only thing you'll be riding is me.

Kathryn Merteuil: The parental units called while you were out.
Sebastian Valmont: Lovely. How IS your gold-digging whore of a mother enjoying Bali?
Kathryn Merteuil: She suspects your impotent, alcoholic father is diddling the maid.
Sebastian Valmont: Good.

Kathryn Merteuil: About that little wager of yours, count me in.
Sebastian Valmont: What are the term...
Kathryn Merteuil: (interrupting) If I win, then that hot little car of yours, is mine.
Sebastian Valmont: And if I win?
Kathryn Merteuil: I'll give you something you've been obsessing about ever since our parents got married.
Sebastian Valmont: Be, more, specific.
Kathryn Merteuil: In english; I'll fuck your brains out.

Kathryn Merteuil: Fuck her yet?
Sebastian Valmont: Working on it.
Kathryn Merteuil: Loser.
Sebastian Valmont: Blow me.
Kathryn Merteuil: Call me later?
Sebastian Valmont: K.

Kathryn Merteuil: I think there's something going on between Cecile and her music teacher.
Bunny Caldwell: Ronald? That's crazy!
Kathryn Merteuil: I know, she's so young and he's so...
Bunny Caldwell: Black!

Kathryn Merteuil: My advice is to sleep with as many people as possible.
Cecile Caldwell: But that would make me a slut, wouldn't it?
Kathryn Merteuil: Cecile, everybody does it; it's just that nobody talks about it.
Cecile Caldwell: So, it's like a secret society?
Kathryn Merteuil: That's one way of looking at it. [under her breath] Fucking idiot...

Sebastian Valmont: What shall we toast to?
Kathryn Merteuil: To my triumph.
Sebastian: It's not my choice of toast, but it's your call. To your triumph over Annette.
[Kathryn laughs]
Sebastian Valmont: What's so funny?
Kathryn Merteuil: Silly rabbit. My triumph isn't over her. It's over you.
Sebastian Valmont: Come again?
Kathryn Merteuil: You were very much in love with her. And you're still in love with her. But it amused me to make you ashamed of it. You gave up on the first person you ever loved because I threatened your reputation. Don't you get it? You're just a toy, Sebastian. A little toy I like to play with. And now you've completely blown it with her. I think it's the saddest thing I've ever heard.
[drinks champagne]
Kathryn Merteuil: Tastes good. So I assume you've come here to make arrangements, but unfortunately, I don't fuck losers.

Sebastian Valmont: I can't win with you.
Annette Hargrove: It isn't about winning, Sebastian.

Annette Hargrove: I'm impressed.
Sebastian Valmont: Well, I'm in love.

Taglines

  • In the game of seduction, There is only one rule: Never fall in love.
  • What you can't have, you can't resist.
  • Are you in, or are you out?
  • They're old enough to know better, and too young to care.

Cast

External links

Wikipedia
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