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|Index||77 reviews in total|
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.
I still laugh as hard today as when I first saw it in the Theatres 25
ago. Peter Falk and Alan Arkin are one of the funniest comedy duos of all
time in this movie. Every scene seems to be more hysterical and
WELL WORTH WATCHING
Peter Falk and Alan Arkin are the greatest movie comedy team since The Odd Couple. Brilliant comedic timing by Arkin as Dr. Kornpett. Falk brings his dry but hysterical humor to this film. If you love great family comedy, this is the film for you.
Legitimately hilarious movie that will please even the toughest critics. This is really the movie that Meet the Parents wanted to be, with a similar plot--CIA agent parent of married-child-to-be. It is much, much funnier than Meet the Parents and far more exciting. I laugh as much watching this movie as I do watching Cheech and Chong's Up in Smoke--maybe more. It is that clever and that hilarious. Peter Falk is as funny as it gets as the unflappable CIA agent. Alan Arkin is equally amazing as the straight-living dentist who must deal with the absurd and dangerous adventures that Falk gets him into. The less said the better. For God's sake, see the movie.
alan arkin, peter falk, and richard lambertini are hysterical in this
lambertini as general garcia is an absolute scream!!!!!
arkin, and falk....two pros who know thier way around comedy...
What makes this movie unique is that virtually every line spoken by
Falk and Alan Arkin is hilarious. You'll note that several of the reviewers
before me mentioned seeing the movie 30 or 40 times. It is necessary to
the movie a number of times just to hear lines you've missed while
Falk and Arkin were born to play these roles (OK, maybe that Columbo guy
I guess what separates those who enjoy this movie and those who hate it (there is no middle ground) is the extent to which the viewers "get it". If you don't know what I'm talking about, you don't get it. So don't rent this movie. Save it for someone who does!
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