Replicant (2001)

Plenty of actors have played twins in a movie. But Jean-Claude Van Damme? He’s done it three times — Double ImpactMaximum Risk and this film, his second of three films with Ringo Lam, the man who created City On Fire, which inspired Reservoir Dogs. This time, Van Damme is both Edward “the Torch” Garrotte and his clone. And yes, the movie starts with a body being doused in gasoline and set on fire, so you know that this is definitely a Van Damme movie.

Garrotte is a serial killer who loves nothing more than killing women and then setting their dead bodies on fire. Detective Jake Riley (Michael Rooker!) is on the cusp of retirement, having chased the killer for three years. However, Garotte is also chasing down Jake and has marked his family for death.

Meanwhile, a secret government agency has cloned the killer, giving him the mind of a child. Why anyone would do this is beyond me, but without this, we’d have no movie to speak of. Jake’s new job is to help the Replicant track down the killer using his own memories because that’s how DNA works.

The Replicant loves Jake and sees him as a big brother, but the old cop only sees the killer’s face. Then we learn why Garotte is how he is — his mother abused him before she killed his unfaithful dad, burning down their house afterward.

There’s a big battle in a hospital, Van Damme hitting Van Damme in the back of the head with a shovel and Michael Rooker gruffly barking every bit of his dialogue as if he was holding in the world’s biggest log and couldn’t find an open bathroom. Please view the entire sentence above as my endorsement for why you should watch this ridiculous movie. Let me throw in that evil Van Damme has a ridiculous wig that makes him look even sillier than he did when he had fake dreads in Double Team. Now do you want to watch it?

If so, you can see this for free on Tubi.

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