Simple Sets - Nearby Locations - Low Budget

Broken

by M. R. Mason

 

Synopsis.

 

Lydia Masters is a well-to-do mother and housewife who lives in a large estate in the rainforest of northern Queensland. She pampers her youngest daughter and tolerates her two other children.  Lydia’s father dies and at the funeral she see her estranged identical twin sister Janine, who has fallen on hard times. Lydia’s husband  suggests she invite Janine to stay with them while she gets on her feet to see if they can mend their  relationship.

 

When their wealthy father’s last will and testament is read Janine is left nothing and Lydia inherits everything. Shortly thereafter Lydia’s husband’s father living in Texas has a stroke and he must leave Lydia alone to deal with her bitter sister.

 

Janine harbors a jealousy toward Lydia born from her father’s treatment of her in the past. She tries to address this skewed past, but Lydia denies their father gave her preferred treatment and tells Janine to take responsibility for her failures. Janine sees the way Lydia follows  in her father’s footsteps with her children and it brings her satisfaction to see the same pattern at play.

 

Janine starts to commit acts which convince the family she is becoming violent, at the same time drugs Lydia, pushing her toward a breakdown. Lydia attempts to fight back while Janine convinces the housekeeper it is Janine who needs to be locked away.

 

Janine pushes Lydia too far and a physical fight, engineered by her, erupts between them. Lydia is knocked out  and Janine locks her up in a bedroom. The police are called and are mis-informed, leading to  Lydia being admitted to a hospital under Janine’s name.  She is sent away to a private mental facility with no prospect of convincing anyone of her victimhood.  

 

Janine lives with Clay, successfully pretending to be his wife while Lydia fights for her sanity in the institution. Lydia begins to understand her lack of empathy is what caused  this but cannot persuade the incompetent psychiatrist to believe she is Lydia Masters. A bigger threat faces her and she knows she must face her flaws if she is to save her family from her unhinged sister. 

 

 

Lydia pretends to take the drugs they administer to her and gradually regains her senses.  She embraces Janine’s identity in therapy and faces the pain she has caused her sister. She is pronounced ‘cured’ and released. She returns home to make amends with Janine, but her poor sister has cracked and believes she really is Clays’ wife and a violent confrontation unfolds. Lydia almost succumbs to her injuries but survives, and in the end Janine is locked up in the same mental facility. Lydia makes sure her sister is cared for and vows to visit her regularly. She  no longer plays favorites with her own children and doesn’t take her happiness for granted.