Full disclosure: I’ve seen this movie a hundred times already. I’m sure you have too. The Nicolas Cage and John Travolta cult classic that til this day I’m sure pays out royalties from network broadcasts and online streams. Maybe it was the fact that while feeding my newborn daughter, I paid extra close attention to this movie, and moreover, my wife’s explanation of it when asked if I was crazy. Was I the only person in the room who thought the premise of this film, while hypnotizing in all of it’s theatrical glory, made no sense? Here me out.
This isn’t a play by play. I simply had one question. One question that brought the whole house down. Was the sex not different? I digress. Castor Troy, a terrorist played by Cage, is captured by Sean Archer, an FBI agent played by Travolta. Troy, unconscious after a fight with Archer, finds himself at FBI headquarters, where they plan to take his AND Sean Archer’s “face off”, swap them, send Archer into prison as Troy to find intel of where the next bomb attack is. So far so good. Troy, who wakes up from his coma, has the FBI surgical team put Archer’s face on him, before executing them all in a fire, along with every document that proves Archer has Troy’s face on. Ok, breathe a second.
This is where things get weird for me. Archer has a family, and while Troy has a family of his own, he was unaware of them, as most of his time is spent “terrorizing”. Troy, now wearing Archer’s face and wedding ring, goes to Archer’s house, and for a whole week, lives as Archer. He didn’t stay low-key. He deliberately shook things up in the household, giving his wife foot rubs, cooking dinner, dancing, singing, etc. But in a marriage, you know each other’s bodies. And if the movie is about swapping faces, then technically that was Castor Troy’s dick inside Archer’s wife. His whole dick. You would think after being married to someone for so many years, having a family with them, you could tell the difference if a completely different penis is in your vagina. But in this case, apparently not.
Maybe I’m just digging too deep into it. But it came off to me like the power behind their faces was equal to that of the Many Faced God in Game Of Thrones, as if putting the face on gave you access to their entire being. In the end, Troy, still as Archer, takes a blade to his face in an attempt to ruin Archer’s chances of becoming himself again. After the real Archer kills the real Troy, Archer shows up at home with his real face again, and no scars. How are the scars gone? Was it plastic surgery? If the FBI had the technology to remove your scars completely, could they not have just re-created your face again? They did scan it in the beginning … Oh yea, everything was burned. Makes sense now.