Moon over Parador
|Moon Over Parador|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Paul Mazursky|
|Produced by||Paul Mazursky|
|Screenplay by||Leon Capetanos
|Based on||Caviar for His Excellency by
Charles G. Booth
|Music by||Maurice Jarre|
|Editing by||Stuart H. Pappé|
|Distributed by||Universal Pictures|
|Release dates||September 9, 1988|
|Running time||103 minutes|
Moon over Parador is a 1988 romantic comedy film, starring Richard Dreyfuss, Raúl Juliá and Sonia Braga. It is a remake of the 1939 film The Magnificent Fraud, based on the unpublished short story entitled Caviar for His Excellency by Charles G. Booth.
The film follows the exploits of film actor Jack Noah (Dreyfuss), who is filming in the small, fictional South American country of Parador when the Paradorian President for Life suddenly dies of a heart attack. Not wanting to lose his position in power, the president's right-hand man, Roberto Strausmann (Juliá) forces Jack to take the 'role of a lifetime' - that of the dead president, as the two men look so much alike. Jack accepts, eventually winning over the people and even the dead president's mistress, Madonna (Braga). However, when paradise proves to be too boring, Jack needs to find a way to get out while keeping Roberto out of the loop.
The movie attempts to generate suspense by establishing that Jack Noah is in physical jeopardy so long as he remains in Parador. However, the film is told in flashback, with an opening scene establishing that Jack has returned to New York City.
In the beginning, while both the President and Jack are in the scene, the President is played by Dreyfuss' older brother Lorin.
During a scene where Jack has to address the crowd as the Paradorian President, he ad-libs his lines and uses the text for the song "The Impossible Dream" from Man of La Mancha. Sammy Davis Jr.'s rendition of Parador's national anthem is sung against the music for "Bésame Mucho". The previous Paradorian National Anthem ("O Parador") is sung to the tune of "O Christmas Tree".
Ralph (Jonathan Winters) tells a long story concerning an English pirate who founded the country of Parador to explain why Alphonse Simms has an Anglo-Saxon surname. The real reason is that the film was shot in Brazil, and director Paul Mazursky needed a shot of a crowd of Brazilian extras chanting the dictator's name. When the crowd is calling out "Simms! Simms!", they are actually chanting "Sim! Sim!" "Sim" is "yes" in Portuguese, the language of Brazil.
Director Paul Mazursky appears uncredited in drag, playing Simms' mother. Mazursky's wife Betsy appears at a buffet table and asks, "Por favor, is it safe to eat this lettuce here?" His daughter, Jill, plays the assistant director of the second film crew to shoot in Parador.
- Richard Dreyfuss - Jack Noah/President Alphonse Simms
- Lorin Dreyfuss - the real Alphonse Simms
- Raúl Juliá - Roberto Strausmann
- Sonia Braga - Madonna Mendez
- Dana Delany - Jenny
- Jonathan Winters - Ralph
- Fernando Rey - Alejandro
- Michael Greene - Clint
- Polly Holliday - Midge
- Milton Gonçalves - Carlo
- Charo - Madame Lupe
- Marianne Sägebrecht - Magda Feldmarck
- Sammy Davis, Jr. - Himself
- Ike Pappas - Himself
- Edward Asner - Himself
- Reinhard Kolldehoff - Gunther Feldmarck
- New York City, New York, USA
- Ouro Preto, Minas Gerais, Brazil
- Rio de Janeiro City, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
- Salvador, Bahia, Brazil
Awards and nominations
- Nominated, "Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture" - Raúl Juliá
- Nominated, "Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture" - Sônia Braga
- "Moon Over Parador (1988)". Box Office Mojo. 1988-10-11. Retrieved 2011-02-14.
- Moon over Parador at the Internet Movie Database
- Moon over Parador at Rotten Tomatoes
- Moon over Parador at allmovie