Robert “Bobby” Shafran, David Kellman and Eddy Galland... possibly not in order.
It is hard to imagine hearing a more unbelievable true story at the movies this year than the one that unfolds in Tim Wardle’s thrilling documentary. Without spoiling too much of the shocking revelations, the titular Three Identical Strangers are Robert “Bobby” Shafran, David Kellman and Eddy Galland. In 1980, these three 19-year-olds serendipitously met and discovered they were identical triplets who were separated at birth. Wardle masterfully teases out their well-documented story—the three men could be found everywhere in 1980, from “Donahue” and the nightly news to People and Good Housekeeping magazines—until the mystery of this separation is revealed like the twist in a Robin Cook medical potboiler.
Three Identical Strangers brilliantly takes advantage of what is currently popular in the documentary genre. While its fairy-tale origins are more mundane than the sensational murder and questions of guilt or innocence to which audiences have become accustomed, its revelations—and sometimes the lack thereof—are as thrilling. The uninitiated will find Three Identical Strangers taking unexpected turns that wind up at a conclusion as satiating as it is shrouded in further mystery. Do not wait on the already-announced feature film to hear the triplets’ tale, which will undoubtedly star Andy Samberg in a bit of casting that, based on pics of the brothers, is so obvious as to be uninspired.