In an era when Jerry Springer and his ilk are grooming every boondock hick with a sister for a wife and a rinky-dink tale to tell, let's applaud two film-makers bestowing dignity on misfits everywhere. Blake (Mark Polish) and Francis (Michael Polish) are conjoined twins. Two heads, two arms, three legs. And two hearts, one of which, Blake's, is gradually lost to kindly prostitute Penny (Hicks). Tentatively, she returns his love, but, well, three's a crowd. While director Michael Polish has picked an artful, brooding path between TV movie melodrama, Cronenberg-style show-and-tell, and Harmony Korine's ironic freak shows, for the first 30 minutes he appears to be on a collision course with B-grade David Lynch. Thankfully, the opening's uneasy gothic whimsy is shown to be just that - a purposely discomfiting curtainraiser for the brothers' own distinct vision and remarkable manipulation of mood. Minimally lit by David Mullen, the film's literal darkness lifts almost imperceptibly before the searing light of its conclusion. Conversations are barely audible, and a tight-lipped screenplay discloses only the most tantalising of personal details. And, yes, ypu do get a three-way love scene - but it's a testament to this sure footed, singular debut that you'll be hard pushed to find a more moving clinch at the cinema this year.
Cast and crew
|Screenwriter:||Mark Polish, Michael Polish|
Lesley Ann Warren