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Film / Fathers' Day (1997)

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A 1997 American comedy film directed by Ivan Reitman, that has Collette Andrews (Nastassja Kinski) conning her two ex-boyfriends lawyer Jack Lawrence (Billy Crystal) and writer Dale Putley (Robin Williams) into looking for her 16-year-old son Scott (Charlie Hofheimer) after he ran away from home by claiming they are both his biological father.

A remake of the 1983 French film Les Compères, its cast also includes Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Bruce Greenwood, Charles Rocket, Patti D Arbanville, Jared Harris, and Louis Lombardi.

It was released on May 9, 1997.


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Tropes for the film:

  • Actor Allusion: This isn't the first time Billy Crystal had someone he knew standing behind him.
  • Ate His Gun: Dale has a gun in his mouth and is trying to summon the courage to pull the trigger when he gets the call informing him that his son (who he'd been unaware of and isn't really his son) is missing. What follows is a very funny sequence where he holds the conversation, gun still in mouth.
  • Blatant Lies: The movie starts with Collette telling two different men that Scott is their son to both Jack and Dale and later Scott repeats the same thing to them both although Jack knew he was lying to him just to spare his feelings.
  • Chekhov's Gag: Dale's aerophobia.
  • Chekhov's Skill: Jack's headbutt.
  • Contrived Coincidence: At the end of the movie, Dale, in Jack's red Jaguar convertible to drive to the airport, picks up a woman who's car broke down and also is on her way to the airport for the same 4 o'clock flight to San Francisco. Also, she's happens to be single and attractive...
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  • Deadpan Snarker: Jack combines this with Sarcasm Mode.
  • Foreign Remake: Of Les Compères.
  • Interrupted Suicide: Dale almost Ate His Gun before he gets a call about the boy who could be his son.
  • Parental Blamelessness: Jack and Dale are each told by a mutual ex-girlfriend that he is the biological father of her teenage son Scott, who has Jackrun away from home. They soon catch up with him and Scott explains that he had run away because his (official) father had forbidden him to see his girlfriend, also claiming that for absolutely no reason, he had taken his car away. Jack decides to tell him a story about how on his tenth birthday, his father had dropped off his dog at the vet's on the way to the circus, telling him after they returned that he had had to be put down, and when Jack asked why he had to do it on his birthday, had merely replied: "It was on the way". Scott and Dale ask Jack what his point is, and get this answer: "The point is that parents screw up sometimes, and that they don't mean it and that they make mistakes because they're human beings. Doesn't mean that they don't love you; doesn't mean that they don't care; just means that they're doing the best they can! You know?" Scott keeps looking at him silently; Jack leaves and Dale tells him: "I didn't understand the story either." The film appears to be parodying the trope here.


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