Stuck on You

Stuck on You

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Bobby and Peter Farrelly’s latest is a parable about conjoined twins, and though it lacks the laugh-a-minute comic mastery of their magnificent Kingpin or Shallow Hal‘s cutting insights about body image, Stuck on You is still a big-hearted charmer. They’re joined at the hip and they share a liver, but they’ve led a relatively normal life nonetheless in Martha’s Vineyards. But brother Walt (Greg Kinnear) aspires for stardom in Hollywood, and has the acting chops to do it—so how can shy brother Bob (Matt Damon) possibly hold him back? Stuck on You milks the inseparable twins gag for all it’s worth with scenes involving one brother taking a shower, or having an intimate conversation, or acting in a one-man-show, or chasing booty while the other has to hang out on the “sidelines.” Some of these gags misfire, but once the twins reach Hollywood the Farrellys find plenty of things to say about the movie biz and its obsession with perfect bodies. Playing herself, Cher is Walt n’ Bob’s diabolical co-star who frets over her career trajectory and the size of her bony ass, and Eva Mendes sends up her manufactured body and breast implants as a sweet natured dumb chippie who befriends the twins. But, truth be told, the central gag wears thin and the Farrelly brothers’ sweet sentimentality gets in the way of their storytelling. They deserve a humanitarian award for repeatedly casting actors as characters with developmental disabilities, but this time his actors aren’t given a strong enough situation to play in—here they feel like well-intentioned window dressing. Still, the Farrellys convey sincerity and sympathy for their so-called “freaks of nature” and manage to get across a handful of wildly original sequences (the climactic musical number is a bona fide showstopper!). Even in a movie as lax and lightweight as Stuck on You, the Farrelly brothers prove once again how good they are with actors: Meryl Streep, better here than she was in the ludicrous The Hours, proves once again that she’s not only one of our great American actresses but one of our greatest comedians (now, if only casting directors would get the hint); Damon’s performance is more emotionally honest than his over-emoting Mr. Ripley; and compare the depth and pain of Kinnear’s turn to his surfacy performance in Auto Focus. Unfortunately, the Oscars don’t give nods to virtuoso comic performances any more than they do David Cronenberg’s body-horrored protagonists. It took years for Cronenberg to be taken seriously by the film community; the Farrellys are fast on his heels, even with a lesser work like Stuck on You.

Buy
DVD
Distributor
20th Century Fox
Runtime
118 min
Rating
PG-13
Year
2003
Director
Bobby, Peter Farrelly
Screenwriter
Bobby, Peter Farrelly
Cast
Matt Damon, Greg Kinnear, Eva Mendes, Wenn Yann Shih, Seymour Cassel, Meryl Streep, Griffin Dunne, Cher