A genetically perfect man, Julius, (DeVito - No! Schwarzenegger) leaves his idyllic island to bond with the leftovers of the genetic engineering process that created him, his car-stealing, womanising anithesis to Mr. Universe of a brother, Vincent (DeVito).
The story, though not exactly original, has potential. Genetic scientists, in an attempt to create the perfect human being, make a cocktail of sperm from six supermen and impregnate one superwoman. She has the baby, but then out pops another! It's Twins! But the twins aren't equally endowed with beauty, brains, biceps etc. — no, one of them has the lot, the other has zilch. One is Arnold Schwarzenegger, and the other is Danny DeVito: beauty (if you like that sort of thing) and the beast.
Arnold decides to leave the island where a scientist has brought him up, and goes searching for his long-lost and long-dumped brother, finding him a car-stealing, small-time hood who trusts no one. And he's short, and bald, so he must be an evil schmuck, right? The two then team up and go off to try to find their dear old mum, getting into all sorts of incredible scrapes along the way, courtesy of large hairy bruisers, stolen rocket components, a couple of blonde girlfriends, nasty scientists, etc. etc.
It's downright impudent and churlish to expect a wacky comedy like this to make sense, but should we not expect it to make us laugh'! You could just about forgive Twins' plot contrivance (where does Arnie get his money if he was brought up on a desert island?), general silliness (twins scratching themselves simultaneously is funny once, maybe) and nonsensical story (if De Vito is so evil, how come he's actually got a heart of gold?), if only the film was actually amusing. It's not as if the raw material isn't there—DeVito is an Emmy award-winning actor who could coast this film if he had a decent script; the idea isn't a bad one; and even Arnie has considerable charm — but producer and director Reitman (Ghostbusters) simply fails to make the most of what he has. There are some good jokes—like when Arnie sees a poster for Rambo, tests his biceps against Stallone's, and walks off laughing—but one joke every half an hour simple isn't enough
The humour, when it comes, is on a par with Reitman's Ghosbusters, but the film feels, rather than the solid comedy it is, like a massive missed opportunity.
Reviewed by Philip Thomas