Mad Money (film)

Mad Money (film)

Infobox Film
name = Mad Money

image_size =
caption = Theatrical release poster
director = Callie Khouri
producer = Jay Cohen
writer = Glenn Gers
narrator =
starring = Diane Keaton Queen Latifah Katie Holmes Ted Danson
music = James Newton Howard Marty Davich
cinematography = John Bailey
editing = Wendy Greene Bricmont
distributor = Overture Films
released = January 18 2008
runtime = 104 min.
country = United States
language = English
budget = $22 million
gross =
preceded_by =
followed_by =
website =
amg_id = 1:323042
imdb_id = 0951216

"Mad Money" is a 2008 comedy-crime film starring Diane Keaton, Queen Latifah, and Katie Holmes, and directed by Callie Khouri.


The film begins close to the end of the story, when the suspects get caught and are interrogated. Then it flashes back to three years earlier and the film proceeds forward from there interspersed with occasional bits from the interrogation.

Three years before getting caught, Bridget (Diane Keaton) lived a comfortable upper class life until her husband Don (Ted Danson) was fired from his position and sunk into debt. The paycheck for Selina, the cleaning lady, bounces again. Selina confronts Bridget and suggests she take a job as a janitor at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.

On her first day on the job, Bridget hatches a scheme to steal damaged dollar bills slated for destruction. For her team she chooses Nina (Queen Latifah), who works the dollar bill shredder, and Jackie (Katie Holmes), who takes bill carts from the Secret Service room to the shredding room. It takes some work to convince Nina to join, but Jackie joins them quickly.

The plan is that in the Secret Service room Bridget will switch a cart's official Master-brand lock with a near identical lock she purchased at Home Depot. Bridget will tell Jackie the cart number and give Nina the official lock. When Jackie gets the chosen cart, she dumps some bills from the cart into a trash can before taking the cart to Nina, who then uses Bridget's key to open it and restores the official lock, and then proceeds to shred the remaining bills. Meanwhile, Bridget, in the course of her janitorial duties, retrieves the dumped bills from the trash and splits them among Nina and Jackie in the women's restroom.

Their first robbery is a success though the take is not as big as they had hoped. However, they're emboldened to do it again and again. Once Don and Bridget pay off their debt, Don suggests they stop before they get caught. Bridget rejects this idea and convinces Nina and Jackie to keep going. They almost get caught but they fold in one of the cops.

A Federal Bank Examiner shows up at a party at Bridget's house, and the next day Bridget sees him at work. The Examiner confronts Glover (Stephen Root), who is unwilling to admit anyone has stolen a single bill out of his bank as a matter of professional pride. Tipped off, that night Bridget and her accomplices begin trying to get rid of all the loot stashed in their houses, but the cops move in before all the evidence is destroyed. Bridget escapes but the others get caught.

Bridget hires a tax attorney to defend them. The lawyer gets Bridget and all her accomplices off the hook for their crimes, because neither the law enforcement, nor the examiner can actually "prove" that the large stash of cash in their homes came from the Federal Reserve Bank. Technically, it isn't illegal to have a couple hundred thousand dollars in cash lying in your house. However, they spent a large sum of that stolen cash to buy expensive objects and improvements on their houses, and did not pay the taxes for them because they couldn't justify the income. The IRS demands they pay their taxes, which turn out to be equal in amount to the money that still remains. They walk away free but penniless.

Eight months later, Bridget reveals to Nina and Jackie that she had stashed away a lot of the stolen money in the basement of a friend's bar.


*Diane Keaton as Bridget Cardigan
*Queen Latifah as Nina Brewster
*Katie Holmes as Jackie Truman
*Ted Danson as Don Cardigan
*Roger Cross as Barry
*Stephen Root as Glover
*J.C. MacKenzie as Mandelbrot
*Christopher McDonald - Bryce Arbogast
*Finesse Mitchell as Shaun
* Richard Law as Cop

Critical reception

"Mad Money" received generally negative reviews to mixed reviews from film critics. As of January 21, 2008 on the review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, the film has received a "rotten" rating of 20%, based on 93 reviews. [cite web|url= |title=Mad Money - Rotten Tomatoes |accessdate=2008-01-21 |publisher=Rotten Tomatoes] On Metacritic, the film had an average score of 41 out of 100, based on 29 reviews. [cite web|url= |title=Mad Money (2008): Reviews |accessdate=2008-01-21 |publisher=Metacritic]

Roger Ebert gave the film a rating of one and a half stars, and wrote, "The bottom line is, some girls will like it, the men not so much." [cite news | last =Ebert
first =Roger | coauthors = | title =Little to love about ‘Mad Money’ | work =Chicago Sun-Times | pages = | language = | publisher = | date =January 17, 2008 | url = | accessdate =
] The film also received one and a half stars in a review in the "Chicago Tribune", and Michael Phillips wrote that the film's cast was not to blame: "Do not blame the cast. The cast is game. The dreary visual scheme, however, combines unwell with the pokey, enervated rhythm of the heist scenes, and while I'm neither a medical doctor nor a script doctor, it seems this film could use a few uppers." [cite news | last =Phillips | first =Michael | coauthors = | title =Movie Review: 'Mad Money' (starring Diane Keaton, Queen Latifah and Katie Holmes) -- 1 1/2 stars - Cast is on the 'Money,' not so the 1-joke script | work =Chicago Tribune | pages =
language = | publisher = | date =January 17, 2008 | url =,1,2073382.story | accessdate = 2008-01-18

The film received three stars in "Newsday", and Jan Stuart wrote "Mad Money" is no "Rififi", but Khouri and Gers invest it with an individuality and generosity of spirit that lift it into the realm of guiltless pleasure." [cite news | last =Stuart | first =Jan | coauthors = | title = Movie review: 'Mad Money' | work =Newsday | pages = | language = | publisher =Newsday Inc. | date =January 18, 2008 | url =,0,1393749.story | accessdate = 2008-01-18] Bill Wine of "All Headline News" gave the film two and a half stars, writing "Mad Money" is a light and lively, likable low-tech lark. Don't expect big laughs, but you can at least bank on it to hold your interest." [cite news | last =Wine | first =Bill (Celebrity News Service Movie Critic) | coauthors = | title =Mad Money ( **1/2 ) | work =All Headline News | pages = | language = | publisher = AHN Media Corp | date =January 17, 2008 | url = | accessdate =2008-01-18 ] "The Canadian Press" gave the film one and a half stars, and criticized Katie Holmes's performance "While Keaton has long done zany and giddy well, and she and Latifah have an interesting contrast of personalities, Holmes' presence feels like an afterthought." [cite news | last =Staff | first = | coauthors = | title =Caper comedy 'Mad Money' comes up short as a female empowerment movie | work =The Canadian Press | pages = | language = | publisher = | date =January 17, 2008 | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-18 ] The "New York Post", "The New York Times" and "Variety" also criticized Katie Holmes's performance in the film, and "The New York Times" called Holmes "the movie's weakest link." [cite news | last =Lu | first =Anne (Celebrity News Service News Writer) | coauthors = | title =Critics: Katie Holmes Is Movie's Weakest Link | work =All Headline News | pages = | language = | publisher =AHN Media Corp | date =January 19, 2008 | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-19] [cite news | last =Pike | first =Julie | coauthors = | title =Katie Holmes Box Office Woes: Mad Money Flops, Report Claims | work =The National Ledger | pages = | language = | publisher =The National Ledger, LLC | date =January 20, 2008 | url = | accessdate =2008-01-20 ]

In an article in the "Boston Herald" titled "Don't waste your "Mad Money" on poor comedy", Stephen Schaefer gave the film a rating of "C", writing "Even with the legendary Diane Keaton center stage, "Mad Money" fails to hit the stratosphere of giddy, intoxicating comedy." [cite news | last =Schaefer | first =Stephen | coauthors = | title =Don’t waste your ‘Mad Money’ on poor comedy | work =Boston Herald | pages = | language = | publisher =Boston Herald and Herald Media | date =January 17, 2008 | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-18 ] The film received a critical review in from Claudia Puig in "USA Today" "This lifeless comedy and uninventive caper feels as if it were cobbled together at a studio's obligatory consciousness-raising diversity seminar." [cite news | last =Puig | first =Claudia | coauthors = | title ='Mad Money' won't buy you laughs | work =USA Today | pages = | language = | publisher = | date =January 18, 2008 | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-18]

Many critics in the UK have stated that Mad Money is a carbon copy of the 2001 UK film Hot Money. The script from Mad Money matches large portions from that of Hot Money. Even some of the main characters' names are the same and have remained unchanged.Fact|date=May 2008

Box office results

The film debuted in fifth place at the box office on its opening day in the United States, with a return of USD$2.3 million from 2,470 screens. [cite news | last =Staff | first = | coauthors = | title =Cloverfield Destroying January Records | work | pages = | language = | publisher =Coming Soon Media, L.P. | date =January 19, 2008 | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-19 ] [cite news | last =D'Allesandro | first =Anthony | coauthors = | title ='Cloverfield' swarms box office: Par's sci-fier nets $16.8 million | work =Variety | pages = | language = | publisher =Reed Business Information | date =January 19, 2008 | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-19] "Reuters" referred to this return as a "modest" result for the film's opening day. [cite news | last =Goodman | first =Dean | coauthors = Editing by Vicki Allen | title =Monster thriller "Cloverfield" crushes box office | work =Reuters | pages = | language = | publisher = | date =January 19, 2008 | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-19] By the end of its opening weekend, "Mad Money" had slipped to seventh place, with a weekend take of $7.7 million. [cite news | last =Germain | first =David | coauthors = | title ='Cloverfield' Pulls Down Monster $41M | work =Associated Press | pages = | language = | publisher = | date =January 20, 2008 | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-21 ] [cite news | last = Goodman | first = Dean | coauthors = | title = "Cloverfield" a monster at box office | work = Reuters | pages = | language = | publisher = | date = January 20, 2008 | url = | accessdate =2008-01-21 ] Writing for "Rotten Tomatoes", Gitesh Pandya noted that the opening weekend per theater revenue "averaged a not-so-impressive $3,126." [cite news | last =Pandya | first =Gitesh | coauthors = | title =Box Office Guru Wrapup: Cloverfield Crushes Records at #1: 'Twas a monster mash at the box office. | work =Rotten Tomatoes | pages = | language = | publisher =IGN Entertainment, Inc. | date =January 20, 2008 | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-21 ] "amNewYork" called the film's opening weekend return "a big flop at the box office," and the "New Zealand Herald" described it as "a box-office flop". [cite news | last =Miller | first =Korin (amNewYork Arts & Entertainment Editor) | coauthors =Kara Warner, Special to amNewYork | title =Paris Hilton, Jessica Alba share too much at Sundance | work =amNewYork | pages = | language = | publisher =am New York | date =January 21, 2008 | url =,0,670314.story?coll=ny_sports_breaking_500 | accessdate = 2008-01-21] Richard Johnson of the "New York Post" wrote that the movie "bombed, debuting at an abysmal seventh place on the box-office charts." [cite news | last =Johnson | first =Richard | coauthors = | title =Cold Run | work =New York Post | pages =Page Six | language = | publisher = | date =January 23, 2008 | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-23] The film's four-day take was $9.2 million. [cite news | last =Gray | first =Brandon | coauthors = | title ='Cloverfield' Clobbers MLK Record | work =Box Office Mojo | pages = | language = | publisher =Box Office Mojo, LLC. | date =January 21, 2008 | url = | accessdate = 2008-01-23 ] cite news | last =McNaughton | first =Maggie | coauthors = | title =In the women's mags: Katie is thriving on broccoli - but it isn't helping career | work =New Zealand Herald | pages = | language = | publisher =APN Holdings NZ Limited | date =January 28, 2008 | url = | accessdate =2008-01-27 ] The film also did not fare well in its release in other countries, and Conor Bresnan of "Box Office Mojo" reported that "Mad Money bombed in its first two markets" overseas. [cite news | last =Bresnan | first =Conor | coauthors = | title =Around the World Roundup: 'Legend' First for Fifth Weekend | work =Box Office Mojo | pages = | language = | publisher =Box Office Mojo, LLC. | date =January 25, 2008
url = | accessdate = 2008-01-30
] With an estimated budget of $22 million [ [ Mad Money (2008) - Box office / business ] ] , the film had broken even by the time it came off theaters. [ [ Mad Money (2008) ] ]

DVD release

Mad Money was released on DVD May 13,2008.


External links

* [ Official site]
*imdb title|id=0951216|title=Mad Money
*rotten-tomatoes|id=1188347-mad_money|title=Mad Money
*metacritic film|id=madmoney|title=Mad Money
*mojo title|id=madmoney|title=Mad Money
*amg movie|id=1:323042|title=Mad Money

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