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When prospective fathers-in-law Steve Tobias and Jerry Peyser meet for the first time to celebrate their children's upcoming marriage, the cake hits the fan. Dr. Jerome Peyser is a mild-mannered podiatrist with a well-organized daily routine designed to eliminate all possible sources of stress. Meanwhile, daredevil CIA operative Steve Tobias moves through life like a heat-seeking missile. His average day consists of dodging bullets, stealing private jets and negotiating with international arms smugglers. Now he's giving potential father-of-the-bride Jerry a serious case of pre-nuptial jitters. Steve's dramatic entrances and exits, his cryptic references to a Russian runaway named Olga and his fight with a gunman in a restaurant washroom causes Jerry to see a vision of his daughter's perfectly planned wedding blowing up in his face. As far as Jerry's concerned, letting Steve into his family takes til death do us part way too literally. Before he can say the wedding is off, Jerry ... Written by
Sujit R. Varma
Welcome To My World Said The Agent To The Podiatrist
Judging by reviews in the press and the user comments here, this version of The In-Laws is a pale imitation of the 1979 classic with Peter Falk and Alan Arkin. I didn't find it so, this film has a lot of good laughs in it and some fine comic performances.
In his TCM tribute to his father Michael Douglas says that when he was starting out in the picture business he avoided taking roles as action heroes because he did not want comparison with his father. At this point though he's definitely not worried about that. The part that Michael Douglas plays, the CIA agent whose life prevents him from having any kind of home life that was done by Peter Falk in the original, I could easily see being done by Kirk Douglas in the Forties or Fifties.
Douglas's son Ryan Reynolds is going to marry Lindsay Thorne the daughter of a mild mannered podiatrist who has more phobias going on than Adrian Monk. But Albert Brooks as the podiatrist is just a little concerned about this mysterious father of the groom that keeps avoiding meeting. When Brooks and family eventually do meet Douglas, he bungles his way into a mission that Douglas is on. After that it's one wild ride from Chicago to Paris and back with both bad guys and the FBI trailing both.
The In-Laws has some very nice moments and the stars work well together. But the best performances are from David Suchet as the international arms trafficker who's gay and who Douglas convinces that Brooks is a regular Dirk Diggler. And the other great performance is from Candice Bergen who is Douglas's estranged wife and Reynolds mother. As she says she's the only one who really has her husband's number, but she's still crazy about him in certain ways.
This version of The In-Laws is an amusing comedy, a worthy next century successor to the original.
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