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4.3 out of 5 stars
Double Impact [Blu-ray]
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on November 20, 2003
Format: DVD
I remember this one like it was yesterday; one of the earliest Van Damme vehicles that actually involved something approaching a modest budget (well, they total two Mercedes in one scene) and a script!
What this film did right was the inclusion of multiple villains, necessary not only because there are two Van Dammes, but because all of the classic martial arts films involved many enemies as well. Recurring VD villains include Peter Malota (the Spanish fighter in later film "The Quest"), whose blue-lit kickboxing scene with Jean-Claude is one of the best in recent memory, and famed "Enter The Dragon" baddie (and longtime martial arts staple) Bolo Yeung.
It helps that Van Damme also has veteran character actor Geoffrey Lewis on board; that kind of gruff, Sam Elliott presence makes up for a lot of acting acumen that is lacking in the rest of the cast. Peter Scarfe stars as the embodiment of evil, and Alonna Shaw as the embodiment.
The pacing is good; the script has some howlers, and the shooting locations are to die for. Look for a very early cameo by Julie Strain!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on February 14, 2013
Format: Blu-rayVerified Purchase
What can I say? I was a big time Van Damme fan back in the day. If you graduated high school around 1996, you know what I mean... and some guilty pleasures die hard. This was one of my favorites of his because it's just good fun. I had to order it for the nostalgia and because I get on these kicks now and then. Sometimes it's old James Bond flicks... and sometimes it's Van Damme-age. And come on... 2 x Van Damme?? What else do you need? Three would just be stupid!

For this blu-ray edition, I was quite pleasantly surprised by the video quality for such an old, for-fans-only, title. Picture is sharp as all h-e-double hockey sticks, with very vibrant colors, punchy contrast, and pretty good detail. I only wish it had true 5.1 sound, but luckily my HT receiver decoded it using Neo 6, which makes good use of my surround setup despite the disc's advertised 2.0 audio. Specs aside, it sounds fine.

Van Damme/Double Impact fans rejoice!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Format: Blu-rayVerified Purchase
While I realize it may be hard for most people to stomach Jean-Claude Van Damme, in this movie you get two of him. Granted it's JCVD playing two different characters in the vein of Parent Trap or Multiplicity, but he somehow manages to play two different characters well enough to make me suspend my disbelief. The movie looks like it is from the 80's even though it was made in 1991, it has odd hair styles and costume design that was prominent in 1980's cinema. As expected, there are lots of hand to hand combat scenes which are well shot, as is most of the movie. This movie was primarily shot on location in Hong Kong and at times this movie looks brilliant. Some of the acting is cheese but the main actors do a solid job, particularly Geoffrey Lewis who plays out one of his best performances to date. This movie has an awesome sex scene with female nudity, great action with hand to hand combat and gun shoot outs, as well as a foot chase (something most films don't do enough of anymore) and really stands out as an amazing 1990's B grade action film. I realize this isn't classic cinema or art, but this movie is at the other end of the spectrum of film and is as equally important, it's pure escapism and entertainment. Seeing a naked hot chick, dudes get scissor kicked in the chest, and people shot in the face by TWO Jean-Claude Van Dammes in Hong Kong, is a great way to spend two hours forgetting about how much real life is a disappointment. On Blu-Ray this movie looks better than its previous iterations on VHS and DVD. Film grain is kept and the transfer is otherwise pretty clean. There are some muddy and soft edges here and there, but the detail is great and sharp and this is probably the best this film will ever look as I don't see Criterion adding this to their catalog or anyone re-mastering restoring the original negative at any point in time.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on May 4, 2003
Format: DVD
Jean-Claude Van Damme was making the best of his films in the beginning to the middle of the 90's.Death Warrant started out his action hero character and after that hit box offices Van Damme went full throttle in a number of other great action adventures.So we come to Double Impact,a film directed by Van Dammes long time buddy Sheldon Lettich.Two Van Dammes are always better than one,but now in 2003 if an action star duplicates himself,it's just downright stupid,action audiences have seen that combination way to much in recent years.But Double Impact was one of the first to do it,and to this day Double Impact is one of the best downright action films.Van Dammes acting is good and his cheorographed fight scenes are clever and original.This film deserves it's props and I'm here to give Van Damme his due,way to go!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on April 9, 2000
Format: VHS Tape
This film has alot of action. One will see in this motion picture that Van Damme was young, and very charismatic. He still is. The movie has alot of action. Van damme by accident finds his twin brother, and together they go against the bad guys. I believe it is an Asian Gang of mobsters, but anyway it is good. Their is a very beautiful blonde who comes out in the movie. She is very beautiful and has a hot body, a very hot body. You will see Van damme have a nice love scene with her. This movie is well worth it. The action is great-great fight scenes, van damme's acting is great, and the beautiful blonde is a gorgeous woman that is a stunner.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on July 25, 1999
Format: VHS Tape
Give this flick credit for real HK locations and supporting actors. The story is typical for a Hong Kong action flick (and yes, that a *good* thing!). But while Van Damme is okay, Cory Everson is magnificent as the Bad Guy's "muscle". Tough and dangerous and always in skintight leather or vinyl, she rules!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on September 8, 1999
Format: VHS Tape
Hey, "Double Impact" is campy good fun. One of JCVD's best, and Cory Everson is kickin' in it. The theme song jams; it could have been an American hit if released as a single! Nice Hong Kong locations, and JCVD really tries to make his twin brother characters distinct. Give this guy a break.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on January 7, 2011
Format: DVD
All apologies aside to an old gum commercial,this Aug./91 film Double Impact starring JCVD is an absolute kick! One of his more successful movies,and deservedly so,it has a solid supporting cast,is deftly directed and has good production values.
The story opens in Hong Kong where one Paul Wagner(Andy Armstrong) and his business associate Nigel Griffith(Alan Scarfe)are unveiling a new tunnel connecting mainland China to Hong Kong(FYI:this is still British controlled Hong Kong).It was built with the help of money from a local gang headed by Raymond Zhang(Philip Chan).After the ceremony is over Paul,his wife,twin boys and their nanny head home.Paul's close friend Frank Avery(Geoffrey Lewis)follows them so far in his car then heads off home alone.Paul's car is ambushed farther along by Zhang and his gang members,with an assist from Griffith.Griffith has decided to take out his partner,take control of the bridge and split the future tunnel revenues with Zhang.Paul and his wife are killed but the nanny escapes with one of the twins(Alex) and Frank who appears on the scene for a brief encounter with the gang escapes with the other(Chad).
The scene is 25 years later and in the States we find Chad who has been raised by Frank.Frank and Chad run a successful ballet and karate school.Chad is a fit young man,whose tastes are refined,especially in the clothing department where he prefers the brighter colours.Frank has never forgotten what happened and a PI has tracked down Chads brother Alex.Frank calls Chad into his office and breaks the news that he is not his uncle and that he has a twin brother in Hong Kong.Soon Frank and an incredulous Chad are off to the Orient.
It is not a great reunion in Hong Kong between the brothers.Before they actually meet Chad is mistaken for his brother more than once.In fact Alex's girlfriend Danielle(Alonna Shaw)actually thinks Chad is Alex.As she is about to make Chad's day Alex walks in and gives Chad a wallop to the head.Frank comes in and straightens out the misunderstanding,along with an explanation of the boys past and the circumstances of why they were brought up they way they were.Alex is a street wise guy who smuggles for a living and frequently has had dealings with the gang boss Zhang.Alex's girlfriend by coincidence works for the boys fathers old backstabbing partner Griffith.She is in disbelief but agrees to keep her eyes peeled for any info she may come upon to verify the story Frank has told.
As time progresses it becomes apparent to the boys and Danielle that there is indeed something rotten in Hong Kong and that Zhang and Griffith are behind it all,including the boys parents deaths.The boys along with Frank start with a series of interruptions in Zhangs trafficking of goods.They also make a shambles of a meeting of several gang bosses with Griffith and Zhang.Frank and the boys hide out in a remote part of Hong Kong but they are eventually discovered and flushed out.
The movies' climax ends on board a large ocean freighter that Zhang has planned to ship drugs on to the States.First the brothers have to go up against Griffith and Zhangs top enforcers.Alex confronts Griffiths guard Kara(Corrina Everson)while Chad confronts Zhangs' Moon(Bolo Yeung).Once dispatched the boys then move onto the king pins themselves.Alex takes care of Zhang half way up a giant ship loader while Chad takes down Griffith with a drop of a ships container.
Frank who had been tortured below decks comes above to reunite with the two brothers who have successfully beaten the odds to take back what was rightfully theirs.
The action in Double Impact is fast and furious and Van Damme is in excellent form here portraying twins flawlessly.Again Van Damme has a solid supporting cast behind him with Clint Eastwoods favourite sidekick Geoffrey Lewis as Frank,Canadian veteran actor Alan Scarfe as the nasty Griffith,Phillip Chan does a fully in control villain as Zhang,Bolo Yeung returns here as Moon,Van Dammes ultimate nemesis in Bloodsport and bodybuilder Corrina Everson plays a great heavy as Kara.The plot is imaginative and moves at a good pace throughout and the stunt work is fantastic.A "holy smokes" moment to watch out for occurs at the beginning of the film when Chad has to take over a karate class dressed in his ballet teaching leotards(purple!).A student who is getting a bit out of hand challenges Chad.From a standing still position to a lightning kick to the face,and a return to his original posture,all in a seemingly split second,it is breathtaking to watch.
In the technical department the movie itself is a very good print and is quite clear and crisp throughout.It is in its' original widescreen a/r of 1:85:1 and comes with no features except the trailer.The disc is one sided and comes in a thick keepcase.
All in all one of Van Damme's better films which I give a solid four stars to.With a great cast and production values,along with a good script,this film is a solid winner.Recommended.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on March 21, 2001
Format: VHS Tape
The plot is a Victorian conceit: twins separated at birth,one becomes gangster, the other a playboy. Van Damme has more boyish, Gallic charm here than in any other film. When I saw it in theater, I thought it might set him on track to non-martial stardom, but it didn't. Best thing in DOUBLE IMPACT is body-builder/fitness guru Cory Everson as a sexy-wicked, head-scissoring lesbian assassin. (Her only other movie role that I'm aware of, and even juicier if you like your Amazons lethal, is in BALLISTIC.)
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon August 31, 2008
Format: DVD
The Jean Claude Van Damme Review Matrix (JCVD-RM)

1.Who is he? He's two guys! Identical twins separated at birth by the Chinese mafia, one, Chad, is a silk underwear-wearing pretty boy from Los Angeles, and the other, Alex, is a criminal from Hong Kong. Amazingly, they both grew up to be martial arts experts.
2.Which family member/friend must be avenged? Their parents are murdered by the same Chinese mafia
3.Does he take his shirt off? Bolo Yeung rips Chad's shirt off during a fight sequence
4.Does he have sex with a C-List actress? Yes. Actually, his sex scene with the beautiful Alonna Shaw is worthy of late-night skinemax fame.
5.Is there a tournament? Sadly, no.
6.Is training needed for this tournament? Perhaps some firearms training should have taken place, but aside from that, no.
7.Does he do the splits in training or in the tournament? When teaching/training a class for aerobics, or something, he dons some spandex and displays the goods for the ladies. He tells them that the splits are easy because of his big legs and karate.
8.Does he punch someone in the balls? Yes, Chad jab-kicked Bolo Yeung in the jewels during the final fight - which was clearly revenge for the nut-chop Bolo delivered to Chad's family jewels earlier in the movie.
9.Does he do a series of flying or 360 kicks? Let's just say that he can use the marks on Bolo Yeung's jawline for his next boot fitting
10.Is his enemy unbeatable? It's Peter Malota and Bolo Yeung. Plus, Bolo has a glass eye, and a career record of 0-1 previous to this movie. So, challenging? Yes. Unbeatable? Probably not.
11.Does he overcome an injury or other hindrance? Not only does he have to battle Peter Malota, Bolo Yeung, Cory Everson, and poor night-vision, but during one fight scene Donkey Kong apparently begins to throw barrels at Chad.
12.Does he win? Without the help of electricity, I have no doubt Bolo Yeung would have won. However, JCVDx2 manages to avenge their parents and claim their stole inheritance by taking down the entire Chinese syndicate.

So, this one goes slightly outside the typical JCVD flick, but the overall impression is positive. In spite of himself, he actually portrays a bad guy or a hardened criminal fairly well. I especially appreciated perhaps the best snot-rocket scene in cinema history - the lighting is stupendous. Ignoring the whole JCVD angle, this one is actually a decent movie with some rather funny dialogue with several gratuitous F-bombs.
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