Released in 1988, Paul Mazursky’s comedy Moon Over Parador is a film about acting. Sort of. Richard Dreyfuss plays Jack Noah, an actor who has had a few action films to his name, but still finds himself scrambling for parts. He’s just finished shooting on his latest film (complete with blond mullet wig to hide his grey hair and receded hairline) in the small South American nation of Parador, where he impresses the local dictator, Alphonse Simms, with his uncanny and amusing impersonation of him. After the wrap party, Jack intends to return home to New York to find his next part, but his retired friend Ralph (Jonathan Winters) convinces him that he should stay for Carnavale.
The few days’ delay would prove fateful when Simms dies of an early heart-attack. The Paradorian Director of National Security, Roberto Straussman (Raul Julia), knows that news of the dictator’s death would cause political upheaval at a time when the country (and Straussman’s interests) could ill afford it. You can all guess the answer he comes up with, of course. Continue reading