Three Identical Strangers ★★½

The filmmakers behind Three Identical Strangers are clearly going for: (i) a sensational “true story”; (ii) an ethical indictment of scientific elitists; and (iii) a contemplation on nature v. nurture.  But commitment and craft aside, they ultimately fail on all fronts: (i) the sensational story gets unsensational more quickly than they think; (ii) the heightened level of outrage that they clearly want us to feel is dramatically dependent upon some rather dubious notions about the bonds that exist between biological twins separated at birth; and (iii) peddling in said dubious notions undermines the credibility of any subsequent intimation that nurture could really stand a chance against nature.

Frankly, I found far more humanity that rings true in Koreeda’s fictional film, Like Father Like Son (2013), than I found in this documentary.  But then again, I’m old enough—and skeptical enough—not to care much about the situation (hypothetical or otherwise) where I have some previously unknown identical twin walking around in the world.  I’ve got plenty of assholes in my life as it is, thank you very much.

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