A review of the documentary “Three Identical Strangers”

We live in a golden age of the documentary when such a work can attract the resources of a small film and be made at the length of a movie and then obtain a cinematic release. This 2018 documentary film, directed by Tim Wardle, tells the incredible story of three Americans, Edward Galland, David Kellman, and Robert Shafran, a set of identical triplets adopted as infants by separate families.

Only when they are 19 do the three learn that they have brothers and unite with them in a joy verging on rapture. But, as the narrative develops, it becomes darker and darker as we learn why the babies were separated without the knowledge of the adoptive parents – a covert experiment to address the perennial question of what most shapes our lives: nature or nurture? By the end the viewer can but share the anger and sadness revealed by the men and their relatives. 

Powerful but poignant.


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