6.5/10
402
4 user 26 critic

Bound by Flesh (2012)

Unrated | | Documentary | 19 October 2012 (USA)
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A biography of Daisy and Violet Hilton, conjoined twins who started as "freaks" in side shows, then went on to be stars of Vaudeville and films.

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1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

Credited cast:
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Daisy Hilton ...
(archive footage)
Violet Hilton ...
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Storyline

This remarkable documentary tells the amazing story of Daisy and Violet Hilton, conjoined twins who rose to superstardom at the beginning of the 20th century as sideshow attractions, performing alongside the likes of Bob Hope and Charlie Chaplin. Ruthlessly exploited by their managers, the sisters ultimately sued for their freedom-which they won at a terrible cost. Bound By Flesh puts a touchingly human face on two outsiders who went from the lowest rungs of society to the big time and back again. Written by Sundance Selects

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Documentary

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Unrated
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Release Date:

19 October 2012 (USA)  »

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1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

The director states that the Hiltons were only 4' 2" tall. There are numerous pictures and film clips that show them to be around 5' - 5' 2" tall. See more »

Connections

Features Freaks (1932) See more »

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User Reviews

A sad but fascinating story about conjoined twins who were constantly being exploited.
23 December 2014 | by See all my reviews

This documentary is anything but a feel-good film! It's the story of a real set of conjoined twins--the Hiltons. And, unfortunately, their lives together were rather sad. When the film begins, it's near the beginning of the 20th century and a woman gives birth to the twins, Daisy and Violet. However, instead of caring for her girls, the mother essentially sells them and the new owner of the girls, 'Aunt Mary' begins exploiting the crap out of them--taking them to freak shows and the like throughout the UK and Australia. Eventually, they end up in America and by now are the property of the daughter of Aunt Mary and her husband. And, once again, they are abused and pushed into the freak show circuit. Eventually, the girls tire of the maltreatment and sue to gain their independence. You'd think things would get better for them--but it didn't. What follows is a long spiral into poverty and sadness.

Despite being an awfully depressing film, it is well made and engrossing. In many ways, it's like a train wreck--something you cannot help but stare at in wonder.


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