One morning, Gregor Samsa awoke to find he had turned into a Jean-Claude Van Damme. He was frightened at first, not sure what all this meant. He had spent the previous evening watching Timecop, the film in which Mr. Van Damme traveled back through time to foil Ron Silver for some reason. Gregor had admitted to his family, who also watched the movie that night, that he couldn't follow the logic of the film, and all that night he was haunted by the image of Van Damme straddling a kitchen counter to avoid a laser beam.
Gregor laid still in his bed, unsure if his being Van Damme was only in his mind. His mother came to the locked door, inquiring whether he was awake yet. Gregor remembered that he had to take the train from Prague that morning, and he tried to answer her, but all that came out of his mouth was a low grumble, an answer in halting English with more than a hint of a Belgian. Thankfully Mrs. Samsa was hard of hearing; she took Gregor's garbled, indecipherable speech for just his usual morning grumbling. Gregor knew he couldn't stay in bed all day; he had to travel. His family was depending on him.
Just then he heard the voice of his employer, Mr. Hilter, who came by to check on Gregor, saying that he was supposed to be on the six o'clock train that morning and was thirty minutes late. Gregor panicked. He had forgotten the time and he sprang from the bed in a hurry to collect himself before Mr. Hilter came to the door. He looked in the mirror and was horrified at his appearance: Gregor had taken on the physical appearance of Van Damme almost identical to the way he appeared in Timecop. He closed his eyes, hoping that when he opened them the mullet, steely jaw, and five-o'clock shadow would be gone, but when he opened them he was still Van Damme.
Mr. Hilter was at the door now, knocking and yelling Gregor's name. Gregor knew he would be fired if he didn't answer the door, so he slowly undid the lock just above the doorknob. Mr. Hilter, hearing the lock being undone, began to berate Gregor before he could open the door. "Samsa, I warned you last time—"
"Yes, Mr. Hilter, I apologize," Gregor said, still unwilling to open the door.
"What? I didn't understand anything you just said! Madam Samsa, is your boy well?" Mother had accompanied Mr. Hilter to Gregor's room, and Gregor worried that her poor heart could not take the shock.
Gregor decided it was best to get it over with, and began to open the door. "Mr. Hilter, I can still make the eight o'clock..."
Gregor never got to finish his sentence. Upon catching site of him in full Van Damme mode, Mr. Hilter turned sheet-white, and ran screaming from the Samsas' tiny home. Mother, clutching her chest, began to cry. "What have you done with my son?!" Gregor hastily tried to assure her that he was hers, but all that came out of his mouth was thick and incomprehensible Belgian. He shut the door hurriedly, and decided it would be best to remain out of his family’s sight.
Gregor knew what he must do to fix all this: he had to go back in time and kill Ron Silver.
Directed by Peter Hyams. Written by Mark Verheiden and Mike Richardson, based upon the Dark Horse comic book by Richardson & Verheiden. Starring Jean-Claude Van Damme, Mia Sara and Ron Silver. Released by Universal Pictures.
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