What the Movies Show Us about Pay Day Loans

By now most of you know us bloggers opinions on pay day loans and check cashing places.  But to be honest, I have never walked into an Ace Check Cashing location.  The closest I have been to a pay day loan place is in some of the movies I have seen recently.  Its funny though, each of these interpretations have something in common, which probably leads to my distrust of these types of institutions: Desperation.

Movie Examples

Lets look at my first movie example: Rounders.  This was an awesome flick with some of the best actors of our day in Matt Damon and Ed Norton.  There is a scene towards the end where Matt Damon has to go to a check cashing place in order to get the $10,000 he needs to play poker against the russian mobster played by John Malkovich.  Maybe Damon’s character has a bank, but at 10pm in the morning, when you need at least five-figures in cash, it’s the 24 hour check cashing places that you have to go to.

Another movie that brings us to a check cashing establishment: Catch Me If You Can.  Here Leonardo DiCaprio goes to several check cashing locations and passes off fake checks which he created so he could stay ahead of Tom Hanks’ police character.  Yeah, this is a scam, but if you are running from the police, and able to make fake payroll checks, by all means, go to town trying to cash them (just be prepared to reap the consequences).

A really bad flick (sorry to be a hater) that also shows a check cashing shop in all its glory is: Cut Off.  The smokin’ hot Amanda Brooks stars in this film where she is cut off from her wealthy family and decides to start knocking off check cashing establishments with her scumbag boyfriend to continue living her spendthrift lifestyle.  As you can imagine, this is a bad idea, especially if you acidentally shoot a security guard (not to give away any plot details).

What would make me use a check cashing service

As stated above, each example involves desperation.  When writing this article, I started to think, “what are the reasons I would find myself at a check cashing location or needing payday loans?”  I think for the most part my answers were all less than likely to ever occur.  Check em below:

  • Running from the mafia
  • Running from the feds
  • To settle a large gambling debt
  • To cash a check when out of town
  • To bail out a friend from jail
  • To hide my financial situation from a spouse

I will consider myself fortunate as I have good credit, I have credit cards that aren’t maxed, and I have an emergency fund.  However, I know, and I am sure you do as well, people that don’t have even ONE of those three things.  For them, check cashing locations are an attractive option to getting the necessary funds for their survival.

I think we’d be surprised.  A lot of people in this country do use check cashing establishments.  A lot of people don’t trust banks and a lot of people have no other options.  Personally, I wish it weren’t the case, but I understand that these places do serve a purpose in most communities.  Its those that go to them in times of desperation that are really putting themselves in danger.

13 Responses to What the Movies Show Us about Pay Day Loans
  1. Money Funk
    February 5, 2010 | 2:59 pm

    Oh, I despise Check Cashing places. But you have to admit that Leonardo was very good in Catch Me if You Can. And who can resist Edward Norton and Matt Damon (two of my favorite boys)?

    Great analogy. Love your ‘uses’ for check cashing establishments.

    So during Christmas, the 7 Eleven parking lot… empty. The check cashing place next door… PACKED. *sigh*. What a shame. Its an endless game of a cat chasing its tail.

  2. Dallas Dollars
    February 11, 2010 | 1:56 pm

    Two things about this wonderful article; 1. check cashing places are for those who have made a financial boo-boo. 2. I need to rent the third movie before I write it off! The first two are pretty Good!

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