The Curator of Schlock #41 by Jeff Shuster
Double Impact, or Black Silk Underwear for Men!
I seem to recall when I was younger reading about an upcoming film adaptation of video game Double Dragon, which would star Jean-Claude Van Damme. Now I don’t know if there was a falling out with Van Damme and the people behind the Double Dragon movie or if the gaming magazine I was reading was mistaken about Van Damme starring in the Double Dragon movie to begin with. Whatever the case, the movie we were left with would have Jean-Claude Van Damme taking on not one part, but two in the form of twin brothers. In fact, Double Impact is not such a far cry from Walt Disney’s The Parent Trap.
Like the Hayley Mills twins from The Parent Trap, the Van Damme twins are separated at birth. This has nothing to do with the fact that their parents got a divorce shortly after they were born. In fact, the Van Damme twins’ mother and father love each other very much. Their dad’s name is Paul Wagner who is business partners with a bloke named Nigel Griffith (Alan Scarfe). I think they built a fancy bridge connecting Hong Kong to Johannesburg or something to that effect. Anyway, the evil Nigel Griffith sells his partner out to the Triads who brutally shoot Wagner and his wife to death. Their maid escapes with one of the twins dumping him off at an orphanage run by French nuns. Wagner’s bodyguard, Frank Avery (Geoffrey Lewis) escapes with the other boy and decides to raise him in France. At least both boys will grow with French accents.
Fast forward to present day and Chad Wagner (Jean-Claude Van Damme) is running the hippest martial arts academy in Los Angeles with Frank. I might as well get this out of the way now and reveal that Chad likes the finer things in life, namely black silk underwear. Don’t let the trailer fool you. Frank convinces Chad to go to Hong Kong where a new business opportunity awaits him. When Chad arrives, one of the locals seems to recognize him and gives him a wad of cash. Not long after that, a stunning, blonde woman corners Chad in a back room telling him how she loves his new haircut as she fumbles at his belt.
At that moment, a tougher looking version of Chad busts into the room demanding to know what’s going on. You guessed right! It’s chad’s long lost twin brother, Alex (amazingly, Jean-Claude Van Damme).
You can tell Alex is the tough one because his hair is slicked back and he always has a cigar in mouth.
Frank tells the two of them to work together to take out Griffith and the Triads so they can reclaim their birthright and get bags of money from operating that bridge. There’s this henchmen whose name is Moon played by Bolo Yeung, the same actor who played the villain in Bloodsport. Those of you who were looking for a Yeung/Van Damme rematch are in luck! There’s also a female henchwoman with killer thighs. I think Griffith gets crushed by a falling crate at some point. I know. I just spoiled the ending for you. I’ll spoil the ending of The Parent Trap, too. The mom and dad remarry! Let’s get together, yeah, yeah, yeah.
Five Things I Learned From Double Impact
- Triads would shoot infant babies if given the opportunity. They’re that evil.
- Wearing black silk underwear will result in your receiving derisive comments from your tougher twin brother.
- Some legs don’t need to be insured by Lloyd’s of London.
- If you cheat on your boyfriend with his identical twin, your boyfriend will still consider it cheating.
- Bolo Yeung is a very frightening man.
Jeffrey Shuster (episode 47) is an MFA candidate and instructor at the University of Central Florida.