The pumped-up denizens of Gold’s Gym in Venice, Calif., take a proprietary interest in Arnold’s career: He’s one of their own. Gold’s is the mecca of bodybuilding, and the Total Recall star used to train there. To get the view from the bench, we visited Gold’s and asked some of the hardbodies working out there what they think of the former Mr. Universe as a movie actor.
Michael Bailey Smith, 28
I liked Predator, because I’m ex-military. In Commando there’s too much shooting and he never got shot. Predator was more realistic even though they were fighting an alien. One reason I like him is that I’m an actor too and he opened the door for big guys. To a large extent we’re still stereotyped as big idiots.
Mike Karawaia, 23
He’s a terrible actor, but as far as what he’s got to show, he’s great. I think he’s got the best body around — good definition, everything’s got the right tone and right shape. He’s the person I look up to.
Anne Roe, 52
I liked his first one, Stay Hungry. It seemed more like the real Arnold. It had his extremely dry sense of humor.
Joe Almeida, 25
I’ve seen all of them. I like when he jokes around, the little comments, like in Commando when he says to that guy, ”I let him go,” after he dropped another guy off the cliff. That made me laugh.
Cathy Ousley, 32
My favorite is The Terminator because the plot was very intricately woven. He was convincing in his part because he didn’t have to act. He’s an OK actor, but I didn’t think he was that good in Twins.
Gary Callender, 24
He has a very intense look — The Terminator captures it. The part where he’s pointing the gun at the girl in the bar — he has that very intense look. I like that look. The only bad movie he made recently was Raw Deal. Now he’s blue-chip stock. He’s not going to win an Oscar, but he’ll get a Lifetime Achievement award.