While most people know Frank Oz for his peerless work as a puppeteer in bringing Yoda, Fozzie, and a host of other characters to life, during the 1980’s and 1990’s he was also one of the best comedy directors in Hollywood. One of his gems is probably my favorite comedy from the 1980’s: Dirty Rotten Scoundrels. In the film, an American con man (Steve Martin) encroaches on the territory of a sophisticated scammer (Michael Caine) in a town on the French Riviera. Deciding he can’t get rid of his competition, the two team-up in a series of scams in which Caine seduces rich women, brings them to the point of marriage…..and then brings them home for dinner to meet Martin playing his role of Caine’s brother, Ruprecht, who is…..special. If you haven’t seen the film, it’s essential viewing, and for Star Wars fans, a rare chance to see Ian McDiarmid in a non-Emperor Palpatine role.
*photo property of MGM