I always love a good killer twin movie and Twisted Twin is one of the best that I’ve ever seen.
The twins in question are Tess Houston and Sammy Crain, both played by Lauren Swickard (or Lorynn York as she was credited at the time this film was produced). They were separated at birth and, until recently, neither knew about the other. Tess grew up in a nice, middle-class household and became responsible and trustworthy. Sammy grew up in a wealthy household and …. well, she’s totally evil and insane. I guess you can’t have a good twin without a bad counterpart.
(For the record, I’ve known a few twins and most of them were absolutely charming ….. except for the Ashvins, who we won’t talk about.)
When Tess leaves for her college orientation weekend, she’s shocked to meet Sammy. Sammy says that it’s just a coincidence that they both ended up on campus at the same time but we know that Sammy has actually been stalking Tess for a while. Sammy and Tess quickly bond. Soon, Tess is sleeping over at Sammy’s mansion and Sammy is taking Tess’s Spanish exam for her. Sound great, right?
Well, it turns out that there are two dead bodies in Sammy’s house. Someone murdered Sammy’s adoptive parents and, when the police arrive, Tess is there and the cleaning crew swears that Tess is actually Sammy. Because Tess actually has been pretending to be Sammy, the police are skeptical when Tess explains that she’s actually Tess. Meanwhile, Sammy has gone off with Tess’s adoptive mother, Patricia (Jennifer Taylor), and is now having to pretend to be Tess.
So, I absolutely loved this film, largely because it just totally went for it. There was no worrying about being subtle. There was no concern about trying to make us believe that the film was meant to be a serious examination of what it’s like to be either a twin or adopted. Instead, Twisted Twin fully embraced the melodrama and just went totally insane. Listen, you have to love a film like that.
But, I know what you’re saying. “Lisa, Lifetime has aired a lot of films about killer twins. What sets this one apart?”
Well, first off, you’ve got some nerve questioning my opinion. That said, the thing makes Twisted Twin one of the best killer twin movies ever made is Lauren Swickard’s wonderfully demented performance as Sammy and Tess. Swickard does a remarkably good job of playing both these roles and it’s a lot of fun watching both Sammy and Tess struggling, at various times, to play each other. I especially liked it when Sammy suddenly found herself having to make coffee for her mom, despite not knowing where anything was in the kitchen or how Patricia even takes her coffee. It’s a fun little comedic moment.
It’s an enjoyable Lifetime movie. It made me wonder what I would do if I ever discovered I had a twin. I’d probably ask her to live far away from me, to be honest. I’m not that good at sharing. Plus, I’ve seen enough Lifetime movies to know that suddenly discovered twins are always bad news.