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Though the films share a number of the same creative personnel including the two lead stars, the screenwriter, and other actors and crew, Big Trouble (1986) though is a film in its own right and was not a sequel to The In-Laws (1979). See more »
Knowing the kind of work of which actors Alan Arkin and Peter Falk and writer Andrew Bergman are capable, the blame for this jumbled, poorly made "comedy" can only be laid at the feet of director John Cassavetes, or whoever it was who was responsible for it. Supposedly Cassavetes didn't direct most of it but was brought in to replace a director who was fired. If that's so, it's understandable why he was fired. If it's not so, then it's Cassavetes who should have been fired. While all accounts I've read about Cassavetes mention that one of his most endearing traits was his wild sense of humor, there's certainly no evidence of that in this misfire. Falk tries valiantly to breathe some life into this lumbering mess, but Arkin seems to be waiting for someone to tell him what to do--or at least to give him something funny to say. If the producers had wanted to make a sequel to the hilarious Falk/Arkin "The In-Laws," then that's what they should have done. The picture is somewhat schizophrenic--it SEEMS to be a sequel to "The In-Laws," and was advertised as such, but Arkin's and Falk's characters and situations have been changed so drastically that it's really a completely different picture.
Anyway, the film is virtually a complete dud. The few gags that made it into the picture are ruined by bad timing and poor editing. In addition, much of the film makes no sense whatsoever (there were major production problems, with constant cast and crew changes, and it shows) and the movie did no good for anyone connected with it--especially the audience. While "The In-Laws" was a major hit, this thing came and went pretty much overnight. It was savaged by critics and ignored by audiences--justifiably on both counts. If you're not in the mood to see otherwise extremely talented people embarrass themselves, do yourself--and them--a favor and skip this.
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