There are stories so engrossing that it almost doesn’t matter how a filmmaker chooses to tell them, but the story itself is clearly the star here. Director Tim Wardle explores the initially feel-good tale of separated-at-birth adoptee triplets Bobby Shafran, Eddy Galland and David Kellman, who discover one another’s existence when they’re 19 years old. But then the tale takes a dark turn, as it becomes clear that the brothers were deliberately separated as part of a “nature vs. nurture” sociological experiment. It’s obvious early on that there will be uncomfortable components to the narrative, as one of the brothers never appears in present-day interviews, and Wardle effectively layers on the complexity beyond the triplets’ 1980s mini-celebrity. And to Wardle’s credit, he allows much of that complexity to unfold without obvious judgment, even as it’s clear that the hidden experiment could have resulted in some real damage. Do we see what we want to see when asking how much of who we are is innate, and how much is learned? This is one wild way to explore the question.
Director: Tim Wardle
Producer: Becky Read, Dimitri Doganis, Amy Entelis, Courtney Sexton, Sara Ramsden, Adam Hawkins and Tom Barry