GREGORY DARK WEEK: Mirror Images 2 (1993)

You know what works every time? The idea that one twin is uninhibited and has a life like you’d read about in Penthouse Forum and another who has a loveless marriage in the lost world of the suburbs. It’s worked so many times and so well that Gregory Dark did it twice, with the first being Mirror Images, which is quite logical.

But if you’ve watched any of his films — his mainstream ones — Shannon Whirry seems like his muse. And so any film with her in it just fires on all cylinders so much better. This time around, she’s both Carrie and Terrie, who were separated when their dad murdered their mother and was in turn killed by the bad twin. But the good twin, well, she’s in an abusive relationship now, much less a sexless one, and all she has is a therapist, Dr. Erika Rubin, who wants her to lie down on something more than just the couch.

Yet when the evil twin comes back, well, what if she wants revenge? And what if she’s willing to hook up with the abusive husband? What if indeed? Beneath the surface gloss and fox and neon and imagery that looks like it stepped out of a 1980s issue of Oui, there’s a dramatic battle for the mind and soul, the line that is drawn between the virgin and the experienced, good and evil and what that really means. Dark’s always throwing psychological games into his films, even when he was shooting movies where Vanessa Del Rio was a brainwashed agent of the KGB and this was supposed to be her Deep Inside greatest hits and ended up being something way, way different. And better.

When I was a kid watching these movies on Cinemax, this is how I thought people actually made love. In my life, I have never heard a saxophone while getting biblical, nor have I ever just touched someone’s upper body for ten minutes at a time while fog billowed out from under the bed.

Honestly, life can’t match up to a Gregory Dark love scene.

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