The new lack of James Caan on the age 82 impressed loads of articles recalling his paintings in “The Godfather” (1972), “Rollerball” (1975), “Thief” (1981) and “Distress” (1990).

To that astonishing listing of achievements, I’d upload “The Rain Other people” (1969), “For the Boys” (1991) and “Flesh and Bone” (1993). However, as we assessment Caan’s lengthy listing of serious works, few ever notice that, along with being any such dynamic dramatic actor, he was once additionally in reality humorous.

Working example: “Honeymoon in Vegas,” the place he necessarily were given to play Sonny Corleone, his iconic persona from “The Godfather,” in a comic book environment. It’s the similar manner Marlon Brando were given to ship up Vito Corleone in “The Beginners” (1990).

Each “The Freshman” and “Honeymoon in Vegas” had been each written and directed by means of Andrew Bergman, an underrated comedian maestro.

Bergman’s “Honeymoon in Vegas” (1992) starts like a melodrama, then instantly shifts right into a deadpan farce. We meet our hangdog protagonist, Jack, performed by means of Nicolas Cage, who’s on the bedside of his demise mom (the overdue, all the time nice Anne Bancroft).

A actually dramatic second turns into cartoonish when Bancroft’s controlling mom calls for her son stay unmarried ceaselessly, then dies. Cage bellows, “I promise I received’t get married!” It’s now not the ultimate time Cage screams his punchlines.


The hole credit are a caricature, a well-liked contact on the time. Assume “Ruthless Other people” (1986), “Model” (1987), “Honey, I Gotten smaller the Youngsters” (1989) and the Peter Dealers-less Purple Panther installments.

Jack ultimately flies Betsy (Sarah Jessica Parker) to Las Vegas, the place he assures her that he’ll marry her, however he drags his ft all the way through the day. Betsy senses this and encourages Jack to partake in a pleasant poker sport being held by means of a qualified gambler named Tommy Korman (Caan).

Jack performs poker whilst Betsy is out of doors within the pool for any such very long time, you’d suppose she’s suffered a warmth stroke.

We all know Korman has mounted the sport and is trapping Jack into letting him “borrow” Betsy for a weekend. Sooner than we get into the doubtful premise, we could speak about the colourful supporting forged.

There’s a operating gag with a personality whose intro line is, “My spouse is having an affair with Mike Tyson.” He’s performed by means of Robert Costanzo, (he was once Arnold Schwarzenegger’s paintings good friend in “Overall Recall.”

Those scenes are a cracked spin at the Jack Nicholson/Burt Younger opener of “Chinatown.”

John Capodice (a personality actor I grew up realizing because the face of Poli-O string cheese) performs a devoted dentist. “Niko” is Danny Kamekona, Sato of “The Karate Child Section II” (1986) and the nature is a pleasing reaction to the stereotypical expectancies we suppose the position would carry.

Ditto Pat Morita’s hilarious flip, taking part in a con guy who pretends to be a clueless native to stump Jack’s makes an attempt to reunite with Betsy. Morita is talking pidgin English and racks up the laughs however with out resorting to stereotypical tropes.

“Mahi” is sharp – I’d have welcomed a complete film of Cage and Morita.

Sure, that’s Bruno Mars in a cameo – it was once unforgettable in 1992 and now could be, oddly, the least attention-grabbing factor he’s achieved in his superb occupation. Then there’s Caan, who by no means performs any of this for amusing, which is why he’s so humorous.


The Kauai portion is beautiful, with the digicam flying to the shore whilst Willie Nelson’s ravishing “Blue Hawaii” performs. Arriving in theaters right through July/August of 1992, the Kauai portion created fearful, unintended laughter within the Maui film theater the place I noticed this on opening night time, as Storm Iniki (which famously trashed the island and interrupted the filming of “Jurassic Park”) was once happening.

“Honeymoon in Vegas” mocks the outsider/mainlander viewpoint in opposition to Hawaii. Cage’s line, “There’s sections of Kauai” speaks to the vacationer lack of information of a fleeting consciousness of Hawaii now not being the rest like “Gilligan’s Island” or the environment of an Elvis film.

Then Peter Boyle presentations up and ruins how a lot I like this portion of the film. His “Leader Orman” is a puzzle to me – is the nature any other grifter who was once employed to take Jack’s time, an insane white guy who thinks he’s a Hawaiian leader dwelling in a shack or does Boyle suppose he’s taking part in a Polynesian?

I don’t know. I hate this a part of the film.

FAST FACT: “Honeymoon in Vegas” snared a decent $35 million on the U.S. field workplace in 1992. The 12 months’s largest destroy? “Batman Returns ($162 million).

As for the iffy premise, it’s chaste, a minimum of till the instant when Korman tells Betsy, “I such as you higher au naturale.” Is he pronouncing that to be lovable or did they lately sleep in combination, and the film simply isn’t appearing or telling us?

Except for for this second, Bergman’s screenplay properly voices what the target market is considering. When Parker cries, “You took me to Vegas and grew to become me right into a whore,” the road hits as a result of, sure, it’s humorous, however she’s additionally proper.

Adrian Lyne’s slick “Indecent Proposal” (1993) arrived simply months later. That movie took this premise significantly and controlled to romanticize the concept that.

Right here, we’re clearly rooting for Jack to get his act in combination and rescue Betsy from Korman, who doesn’t disclose himself to be a in reality rotten creep till his ultimate mins of display time.

“Indecent Proposal,” then again, offered Demi Moore having to choose from her husband, performed by means of Woody Harrelson, or the millionaire who gives a $1 million for an evening along with her, performed by means of Robert Redford; in that movie, we’re rooting for the latter, as he’s clever, subtle improve from her husband.

“Honeymoon in Vegas” could also be a comedy however, not like “Indecent Proposal,” it’s now not a whole fable.

This arrived right through the time the U.S. was once nonetheless deep into their Elvis mania (which has been fairly reignited, due to Baz Luhrman’s contemporary “Elvis”).

“Honeymoon in Vegas” was once within the corporate of the extremely rated TV film “Elvis and Me,” the “Elvis” TV collection (with Michael St. Gerard as The King), the Elvis postage stamp and the nonstop reviews from the duvet of grocery retailer scandal magazines of Elvis sightings.

In case you depend “Wild At Center” (1990), then that is Cage’s 2d movie as Elvis. Additionally, the scene of Cage operating down the Vegas strip is a abnormal precursor to “Leaving Las Vegas” (1995) and, weirdly, even “Con Air” (1997).

There’s an peculiar synergy to a lot of Cage’s movies.

The most important contrivance here’s one I stuck even the primary time I noticed this – how on Earth does the announcer on the Vegas display (it appears like Don Pardo) know to name Jack’s identify, let on my own at a superbly timed second, when Betsy and Korman can listen it?

It doesn’t topic, because it a minimum of offers us one of the vital funniest strains, as Jack reunited with Betsy, who’s dressed like a Vegas showgirl (for causes too contrived to provide an explanation for) and Jack innocently asks, “Did you get a role right here?”

As Cage eras cross, this was once an enchanting time for him. His stint as a unusual persona actor (“Birdy,” “Elevating Arizona,” “Peggy Sue Were given Married” and “Wild At Center”) gave strategy to his romantic comedy section (this film and “It May Occur to You” and the cutesy “Guarding Tess”).

He then embraced his severe aspect (his Oscar-winning flip in “Leaving Las Vegas”) sooner than a unexpected immersion into giant motion motion pictures (“Con Air,” “The Rock” and “Face/Off”).

He controlled a couple of status dramas in between.

It says a lot about Cage’s occupation that he as soon as made a film the place he jumped out of a airplane dressed as Elvis Presley, dressed in a bounce go well with stuffed with Christmas lighting fixtures, and it’s a number of the maximum mainstream movies of his occupation.

Caan, then again, made different comedies, like the unlucky “Mickey Blue Eyes” (1999) and the vacation vintage “Elf” (2003); the latter efficiency works as a result of Caan isn’t taking part in for laughs however naturally connects to what makes the nature humorous.

It’s the similar explanation why he’s so excellent in “Honeymoon in Vegas” and a number of the causes this looney treasure lets in Caan’s no-nonsense efficiency to present it some actual comedian chew.