Three Identical Strangers

Imagine finding your mirror image in a stranger. Twice!

“Three Identical Strangers” unwraps a real-life mystery you have to see to believe. Hollywood couldn’t make this shi!t up.

This doc is why I love docs!

Note: here are documentaries like Three Identical Strangers (I list 7 of them so far) in case you want more docs about family mystery, identity et al.

The Trailer for Three Identical Strangers (2 min)

The 9-minute Trailer for “Three Identical Strangers”

Watch “Three Identical Strangers”

You can stream “Three Identical Strangers”:

  • for free (with library card or student ID) on Kanopy here
  • on Hulu here (with a subscription)
  • for rent ($) on Apple TV here
  • for rent ($) on Amazon Prime Video here
  • for rent ($) on YouTube here
  • All streaming options are here.

My Review of “Three Identical Strangers”

Warning, below has spoilers!

It’s like a human riddle wrapped in a mystery.

Picture this: three identical brothers, separated at birth, reunited by sheer chance.

And it’s not until they are aged 19!

First, Bobby finds Eddy.

A friend sees Eddy, thinks it’s Bobby.

They meet. The resemblance is uncanny.

Then David joins. And, of course, he looks the same.

It’s a euphoric triplet reunion. The media frenzy follows.

Their identical grins captivate the nation.

Their reunion? It’s like a fireworks show of joy, confusion, and questions. Questions that lead them down a rabbit hole.

It’s not all high fives and happy endings.

Here’s the next twist!

The doc peels back layers of a secret study — Psychiatrist Peter B. Neubauer, the puppet master, had split them for research.

There have been regular visits to the triplets from researchers to check on their progress, like human lab rats.

All three, unbeknownst to each other, were under psychiatric care as teens.

The big reveal? Their adoptions weren’t just random.

Each brother was placed in a family with a specific social class, each already having an adopted daughter from the same agency, Louise Wise Services.

Bobby’s upbringing? Picture perfect, with a doctor and attorney for parents.

Eddie’s life? Classic middle-class, with a teacher dad.

Then there’s David, blue-collar through and through, his dad running a retail store. David’s dad, Bubbala, he’s a character, celebrating his son like a one-man cheer squad.

It’s nature versus nurture played out in real life.

Another twist: Eddie’s story takes a dark turn – he commits suicide.

“Three Identical Strangers” is a journey into identity, ethics, and the human spirit.

Highlight from my Notes:

  • Louise Wise Services is the adoption agency that connected the three boys to their families. They were an elite East Coast agency known to cater to elite Jewish families.
  • Eddie has appendicitis but has no insurance. So he checks in as Bobby.
  • The triplets are hanging out in New York City and a young lady asks them if they’ll be in her movie. They agree. It’s Madonna (the movie is “Desperately Seeking Susan”).
  • Neubauer reportedly had researchers regularly visit each of the triplets as they grew up to study their development.
  • Some, if not all, of the mothers of the triplets/twins in Neubauer’s study appear to have suffered from mental illness. Some wonder if Neubauer deliberately chose kids of mentally ill parents to see if they could thrive with “normal” parents. Nature versus nurture.
  • It turns out that part of the design of the triplets study was that each of the triplets joined families that already had adopted a girl from the adoption agency Louise Wise.
  • Eddie commits suicide.
  • There are at least four individuals from the study who do not know they have a twin.

Thanks for reading.

Rob Kelly, Chief Maniac of Daily Doc