The In-Laws (2003)


“The one time my father shows up to Cub Scouts and I earn a merit badge in covert evasion techniques. ” – Mark

Number of Times Seen – Twice (27 Jul 2004 and 18 Jan 2020)

Brief Synopsis – A podiatrist is drawn into an international espionage plot by his future in-law who works for the CIA.

My Take on it – This is yet another Hollywood remake that was totally unnecessary.

The original film with Pet er Falk and Alan Arkin was able to tell this story in such a fun way and this time around, they do a horrendous job trying to replicate that.

Michael Douglas and Albert Brooks are both great actors, but they lack the kind of chemistry and camaraderie needed for a film like this to work.

Their performances don;t even come close to imitating or even rehashing the kind of work that their predecessors managed 24 years earlier.

The film also shifts the focus to a more global one which loses much of the charm and intimacy that helped the original work better and stay focused since in that film, they only dealt with a small Banana Republic instead of a global arms deal.

Loved seeing Ryan Reynolds in the small role of the groom despite the fact that he isn’t given enough screen time in order to help make this film even more watchable or even passably enjoyable to sit through.

Bottom Line – Terrible remake that fails to work as well as the original does. Douglas and Brooks have terrible chemistry together and they never even manage to come close to rehashing or even imitating what Falk and Arkin had 24 years earlier. The choice to make the story deal with international arms dealers instead of just a small Banana Republic also causes the film to lose much of the focus that helped make the original more fun. It’s great seeing Reynolds as the groom, but his role is too small for him to be able to add much to the story and make it more watchable or even passably enjoyable.

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – The last name of the bride’s family is Peyser. Penny Peyser played the bride in the original The In-Laws (1979). (From IMDB)

Rating – Razzie Worthy (3/10)

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