|Page 5 of 9:||        |
|Index||83 reviews in total|
The In-Laws is one of the better movies in existence that most people
haven't heard of or have forgotten. It is a start-to-finish funny,
entertaining movie that is at once ridiculous as well as intelligent.
Scenes such as the gunfight around cab in New York City or the antics of
strange Latin American dictator are goofy but the movie plays them of as
normal. In fact, just about everything Vince (Peter Falk) does is silly,
but he carries it off with such a straight face and confident demeanor
you accept it. And this, of course, is what makes it such a funny movie.
The constant give and take between the ludicrous actions and comments of
Peter Falk and the deteriorating sense of normalcy (and sanity) felt by
Arkin is what drives the film. And then the ending where it all comes
together is wonderfully surprising because there are times in the movie
it doesn't seem like anything will ever come together and their is no real
point to any of the actions.
A very swiftly moving plot, unforgettable characters and memorable lines and sight gags are what make "The Inlaws" one of the better comedies of its time.
Insanity, improbability, and a great team (Alan Arkin, Peter Falk) make
a one of a kind comedy. Arkin as an extremely meek, mild-mannered dentist
with a quiet suburban life, is perfect foil for Peter Falk (who you never
really believe), as a man who presents himself as businessman, gangster,
rogue CIA agent, depending on his company. Their respective families (and
incompatible lifestyles) are brought together as the nuptials of their
children approach, therefore the title of the film.
Peter Falk complicates the life of an unsuspecting Arkin by involving him in felony robbery, gangster chases, and a world wide counterfeiting scheme. There is literally no place to hide, all official (and unofficial) agencies are after him/them. Falk's unshake-able calm, in the face of any danger (bored, been there/done that), is in stark contrast to the controlled, ever-building insanity that is overtaking Alan Arkin. Arkin, by the way, steals the show. It makes for a great vehicle for Arkin, who eventually becomes visibly "numb" to his situation. So "numb", in fact, unexpected heroics seem to be the logical thing for him to do.
The resolution of the movie deserves a round of applause for a very inventive script. You won't tire of this movie, it gets better with each viewing. And, one more thing, after you see the film, expect the word "serpentine" to bring a smile to your face, whenever you hear it...
If you were ever stuck on a desert island with a TV, VCR (and, let's assume, a power source), this would definitely be one of the movies you would like on hand to jolly your solitary time away. It is an insanely funny film that compares favorably with the classic screwball comedies of yesteryear. Only instead of Katharine Hepburn and Cary Grant, we get Alan Arkin and Peter Falk. Although they don't quite function as a romantic duo, the pairing of the characters of Dr. Shelly Kornpett, as the deadpan, increasingly desperate dentist, with Vince Ricardo, as a renegade CIA agent extraordinaire, works wonderfully. Along with everyman Shelly, you will be sucked into the zany, alternate world of agent Ricardo. See it with friends or loved ones, because this is the kind of movie that you will be quoting to one another long after you see it. Just remember to serpentine!
Having read a number of reviews, I have to wonder if I saw the same movie everyone else did. I will have to admit that I do not like Allen Arkin, but not even Arthur Hiller, an actor, and director that I very much respect, could breathe life into this flaccid and boring script. I happen to have seen this film recently, and I discovered that I disliked it even more than I did when I saw it in a theater in 1978. One has to question a film's worth when its best joke/gag consists of Falk and Arkin fleeing from gunfire screaming, Serpentine, Shelly...Serpentine...big yuk!!! Perhaps I expect too much from film comedies, but I like to laugh as much as the next guy, but I found myself checking my watch wondering when this experience would be over
Watching Peter Falk as a slightly off-kilter maybe-gone-rogue CIA agent
interact with poor schlemiel Alan Arkin as a dentist is comedy gold,
long before Seinfeld came along and coined that phrase. While the plot
is appropriately whacked out, what is truly delightful--and perfect--is
watching a normal, everyday type like Alan Arkin become gradually more
and more unhinged as Peter Falk's character involves him in plot after
crazy plot. It all culminates in a happy ending, but getting there is
the whole story and provides continuous laughs.
Excellent acting by the entire cast--even the bit players--and sprightly direction. "Serpentine!" will forever reign as one of my favorite lines.
Arthur Hiller directed this funny comedy that stars Alan Arkin as Sheldon Kornpett, a successful dentist whose daughter is about to get married. The groom's father Vince Ricardo(played by Peter Falk) is cagey about his profession, but shortly before the wedding, he comes to see Sheldon at work requesting his assistance in a job related matter that escalates into a shootout and chase, where they find themselves on the run from New York City to Central America, where they become involved with a wacky dictator(played by Richard Libertini) who wants them shot... Wild and unpredictable comedy is surprisingly good, with two memorable lead performances, and a most original script.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
The writing and casting are excellent. Falk and Arkin play their
characters perfectly. The key here is they didn't follow what has
become somewhat cliché in comedies.
Arkin's character, today, would be an over the top neurotic. While I haven't seen the remake, Albert Brooks' casting indicated to me that they went that way. He's successful upper middle class dentist with a loving wife and daughter. He had no problems with the upcoming wedding until he meets Falk. Also, none of the things that go wrong in his life are attributable to him. He's truly a normal guy wrapped up in a crazy situation that's far from his "safe zone". He even manages to adapt somewhat well until the firing squad scene.
With Falk's Vince Ricardo, they didn't go with a guy cracking jokes, an over the top tough/professional guy, or the crazy guy. He was a normal guy who has an extraordinary job. He's been at it so long, none of it phases him, because it's normal for him. His funny lines come from treating these situations as everyday occurrences. He can babble about pea soup after being shot at because it's like a train being late to him. He's not funny because he's trying to be funny. He's funny because he's completely calm in an outrageous situation. The only time he breaks this is during the dinner scene where he yells at his son. It's there that you realize he's paid a price for his secret life.
Am looking forward to seeing the remake (2003) later tonight. really enjoyed the original and hope its remake is able to reach the high standards of the original - One of Arkin//Falk's best. Among the top 100 movies I have had the pleasure to see! really liked the way arkin and falk played off each other - not totally new but they carried it off especially well. Falk's ability to lead arkin through the tangled web of intrigue lead to many opportunities off the comedy of both actors. (mostly at the expense of arkin) the mere fact that they start out as angtaganistists and end up friends, after all their trials and tribulations is amazing - hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
Alan Arkin,and Peter Falk, are perfectly cast in this tailor made Comedy Classic, Alan Arkin,plays Sheldon Kornpett, a mild mannered dentist, Peter Falk, plays Vince Ricardo, who may or may not be a mysterious agent for the CIA, the pair are brought together by Arkins daughter's impending marriage to Falk's son. When Falk,asks Arkin to help him on a simple errand, This errand soon inadvertently propels Arkin and Falk, in to a series of zany, Action packed adventure's which have the pair involved in US treasury plate laundering,and in over their heads in a backward banana republic, presided by a demented dictator played to the hilt by Richard Libertini, As you can expect from a Andrew Bergman script,it's full of hilarious characters,and of course memorable quotes,such as Falk's wry monologue about 'Giant Tse-Tse Flies is priceless, Mel Brook's regular John Morris, contribute's a zippy Score,
If you ever have the opportunity to see this film, do it. It is simply
of the funniest movies ever, rivaling the best work of W.C. Fields, the
Brothers Marx, Laurel and Hardy, and all the others.
Only two things keep this from being a perfect "ten," and these problems are so common to movies made circa 1975-1985: the very dated music, and the "topical" use of profanity, which was (along with the color photography) one of the only things that would give this away as a film of the 70's rather than the 30's or 40's.
|Page 5 of 9:||        |
|Plot summary||Ratings||External reviews|
|Parents Guide||Plot keywords||Main details|
|Your user reviews||Your vote history|