5.2/10
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Big Trouble (1986)

R | | Comedy | 30 May 1986 (USA)
Insurance agent plots with client to kill her nutty husband.

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(as Warren Bogle)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
O'Mara
...
...
Noozel
...
Arlene Hoffman
...
Dr. Lopez
Steve Alterman ...
Peter Hoffman
Jerry Pavlon ...
Michael Hoffman
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Joshua Hoffman
...
Det. Murphy
Karl Lukas ...
Police captain
...
Gail
...
Doris
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Storyline

Insurance agent plots with client to kill her nutty husband.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Release Date:

30 May 1986 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Grande Burla  »

Filming Locations:

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Color:

(Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film was first released in the same 1986 year as John Carpenter's similarly titled movie Big Trouble in Little China (1986). Interestingly, Big Trouble (1986)'s director John Cassavetes had previously written and directed a film called The Killing of a Chinese Bookie (1976). Moreover, Big Trouble (1986) features a story element involving Chinese labor workers. See more »

Connections

References The Agony and the Ecstasy (1965) See more »

Soundtracks

Eine kleine Nachatmusik
Written by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Arranged and adapted by Bill Marx
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User Reviews

 
Big trouble in front of and behind the cameras
27 August 2016 | by See all my reviews

Writer-director Andrew Bergman and stars Peter Falk and Alan Arkin re-teamed after the success of their earlier collaboration The In-Laws with this misfire crime comedy.

Arkin plays an insurance agent who has triplet sons who are about to leave for Yale. He's struggling to find the money to pay for it when along comes seductress Beverly D'Angelo, who wishes to take out a large life insurance policy on her dying husband (Peter Falk). She convinces Arkin to help push through the policy in exchange for a cut of the pay-off. Charles Durning plays a wily insurance investigator who knows something fishy is afoot.

If this plot sounds familiar, this was meant as a take-off on Double Indemnity, although the second half goes off in a completely different direction. Columbia Pictures, which released this, ran into copyright trouble with Universal over the Indemnity similarities. Nice bet that Universal wouldn't notice the similarities, since they seem clueless about most of their classic catalog, but not Indemnity - so famous that even the suits at Universal knew the plot.

This was the beginning of this film's troubles, as the title proved to be all too prophetic. Tensions on the set became unbearable, and Andrew Bergman quit the movie about halfway through filming, as well as his producing partner, resulting in this film having no credited producers. Falk contacted his old friend John Cassavetes, who reluctantly came onboard and directed the remainder of the film. In fact, this ended up being Cassavetes' final directing credit. This isn't very funny or very interesting, and the script problems are obvious fairly early on. The performers try, but they don't have much to work with. This was barely released to theaters.

And what did Universal pictures get in return for the Columbia rehash of Double Indemnity? Columbia gave Universal an unused script they found inane and unworkable - a script titled "Back To the Future".


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