The 1979 comedy “The In-Laws”, starring Peter Falk and Alan Arkin, is one of my favorite movies. Perhaps my all-time favorite.
One of the best characters in the film is played by actor Richard Libertini, who died earlier this week. Libertini plays General Garcia from Tijada, as Peter Falk’s Vince Ricardo says, “It’s a tiny island south of Honduras.”
Mr. Libertini delighted critics as General Garcia, the moneyed, genteelly vulgar and more-than-borderline-delirious dictator of a banana republic in “The In-Laws,” which starred Peter Falk and Alan Arkin.
The character is advised by a political counselor formed, à la Señor Wences, from Mr. Libertini’s lipsticked thumb and forefinger; he also owns a vast collection of paintings on black velvet.
If you were subjected to the horrific 2003 reboot of the movie with Michael Douglas and Albert Brooks (two of my favorites, the remake notwithstanding), do yourself a favor and watch the original. Start with the theatrical trailer …
… and then watch Libertini’s scene stealing (stop at about the two-minute mark to avoid spoilers.)