Stuck on You
Director(s): Bobby Farrelly and Peter Farrelly
Writer(s): Peter Farrelly and Bobby Farrelly
Reviewed by: Ian Evans on
Release Date(s)Dec 12, 2003 - Wide
Bob and Walt Tenor (Matt Damon and Greg Kinnear) are two brothers who work together at a burger joint in Martha’s Vineyard that’s famous for its three-minutes or free burger deal. To say the pair are joined at the hip would be wrong because, as conjoined twins, the brothers are actually joined a little higher than that.
They don’t perceive their situation as a handicap. Their choreographed work in the kitchen is a sight to behold, it’s impossible to get a puck by them in hockey, and Walt manages to make an annual appearance in the community play, while his black-clad brother battles stage fright.
Even though they share a liver, they don’t necessarily share the same dreams. Bob’s happy working at the diner, while Walt dreams of making it big in Hollywood. Bob, the dutiful brother, goes along with him. Walt lands a role on a TV show alongside Cher, who figures casting a conjoined twin will get her out of a show that she hates, but the magic of visual effects erases Bob and the show’s a hit. Bob, meanwhile, finally meets his online pen pal May (Wen Yann Shih) and a romance begins to blossom even though he manages to hide his condition from her.
The two brothers, together since birth, suddenly find themselves growing apart and pondering the operation that will separate them, even though one will only have a 50/50 chance of survival.
It’s fitting that a comedy about conjoined twins comes from the Farrelly brothers, Peter and Bobby, who direct this film and co-wrote the script from a story by Charles B. Wessler and Bennett Yellin. The brothers work together on all of their projects, each taking on a different aspect of the directing process. They also frequently cast or portray people with physical or mental challenges in their films, while pointing out that the fully-abled people who don’t know how to act around them are the ones with a disability. When a guy in the diner gets the wrong drink from their mentally-challenged waiter, Rocket, he tells Bob that they shouldn’t have freaks in here, to which Bob responds, “You know, you’re absolutely right, we don’t want freaks in here, so Rocket, would you kindly show this freak to the door? “
So, while at first you might think this is a one joke comedy, you begin to realize that there’s real depth here. We often look at conjoined twins as one entity, but they are two different people and the Farrelly’s explore what happens when their dreams are different, albeit with a lot of physical comedy thrown in. Though there’s still a lot of off-colour jokes, the film is not as raunchy as some of their previous outings.
Kinnear and Damon are great as the Tenor brothers. Kinnear’s Walt has a self-assured smugness, while Damon’s Bob has the shy sweetness of a guy who sometimes has literally been in the shadows. Eva Mendes may be playing a Southern California beach babe, but the Farrelly’s still give her a good heart. Cher plays up the public perception of herself, at one point telling her young lover “Go to bed. You have a geography test in the morning”, while Meryl Streep is game for anything in her cameo appearance. You’ll also want to stick around for the touching speech during the end credits made by Ray “Rocket” Valliere, who has also appeared in the Farrelly’s Me, Myself & Irene.