Monday, September 26, 2011

Movie review -- Triangle

triangle movie poster

Caught this flick on cable the other day and I decided to do a review because it impressed me so much. It's a 2009 release and has a decent pedigree, so I don't know why I haven't heard of it before. But anyway . . .

The movie opens and we see Jess, played by Aussie hottie Melissa George, dealing with her autistic son and doing some mundane household stuff. The movie is set in Florida, Miami to be precise, so it's fun for me to see familiar scenery. There's a vaguely unsettled feeling to the beginning, Jess seems distracted, her doorbell rings and no one's there. But eventually she's off in her car.

We next see a yacht at the marina. The boat's name is Triangle, hence the movie title. Or is it? On board is Greg, a guy who fancies Jess the waitress, and a random dude -- Victor. They are joined by the preppy Downey and his sort of bitchy wife Sally who brings along her friend Heather, whom she hopes to hook up with Greg. Sally dislikes Jess and isn't shy about it.

Jess joins the group and seems a bit out of it, claiming she's tired. Everyone is dressed in upperclass boating attire except Jess, who's in tight short denim shorts and a cleavagey tank top with hoody sweater. Which only exacerbates Sally's disdain for the commoner.

Off they go and things seem more normal. Then suddenly the wind drops out and they find themselves becalmed. One of those ominous movie storms appears on the horizon. As Greg calls the Coast Guard to find out what's going on they intercept a garbled distress call. Then the radio goes dead. And then the storm gets ugly.

The ship is pounded almost to pieces then capsized. Heather is washed overboard, and the remaining survivors are left to sit on the hull and ponder their fate. Jess is oddly on edge, looking around as though she expects something bad is going to happen. Suddenly out of the mist, a cruise ship appears.

Miraculously, the ship slips right next to the capsized yacht, close enough for everyone to hop onto the gangplank. As they climb aboard, the group finds the ship deserted.

It's an old cruise ship, and yet it is still running and the ballroom has fresh food spread out on a buffet. As the group heads toward the bridge, Jess is more and more edgy claiming a sense of deja vu. A jingling sound appears down one of the empty hallways. They find a set of keys. But they're Jess'! Which she left on the yacht. How did they get here?

Things degenerate from there as one by one the group gets killed off. Nothing makes sense as different members of the group tell conflicting stories. Eventually Jess goes face to face with the killer, who is dressed in the de riguere movie fashion of overalls and canvas bag with eye holes cut out.

Jess fights fearlessly and defeats the killer, forcing him to the railing of the ship. The killer is saying something, but it is muffled by the mask. It sounds like he's begging Jess to kill him. She obliges, knocking the killer overboard. Looking at the time, it's only 45 minutes into the movie at this point. So . . . ?

Jess hears something off the side of the ship and looks down . . . it's the Triangle, capsized with the group, including Jess, waving and calling out for help. Just as it had happened earlier in the movie.

And away we go.

I read a book back in high school called "The man who folded himself" about this guy who found a time travel device and began jumping back and forth in time. The book covered the various ideas about changing the past and thus the future, meeting yourself in the past, and so on. This movie does the same thing.

It rolls over itself time and again as Jess begins trying to understand what's happening and seeing if she can change it. Is the name of the cruise ship a clue to what's going on? Mythology buffs might have an answer to that. But it's a whirlwind that doesn't seem like it's ever going to reach a conclusion. Can Jess get off the ship and back to her son, whom she claims is waiting at school for her to pick him up? There are clues in the scenes that suggest this has been going on a long, long time. Why? If the answer is there, I didn't see it in only one viewing. Which is going to make me want to catch it again.

Melissa George does an excellent job with her portrayal of Jess. At various points Jess is scared, determined, confused -- a wide range of emotions and George pulls them off well. In her mid 40's, she's still bangin' and in fact, one wardrobe situation made me chuckle as after the storm and the capsized boat and the swimming around and all, there's a long view shot that shows she still has on her 5" stacked wedgy sandals. A conceit by the director to accent her toned legs and nice white girl booty I suppose. No complaints here :-)

All in all, it's a nicely done movie that I think will hold up well under repeated viewings and in fact, probably requires them. No nudity or sex and the killings are done with modest gore -- fairly realistic without devolving into the Saw-like overindulgence so popular today.

I definitely recommend it.

As a bonus, here's a few pics of Melissa in all her Aussie hotness:

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Did you find this review helpful? Check out my other reviews for my thoughts on the flicks and the occasional gallery of hotness that accompanies them:


Anonymous said...

Hey you.

I saw the movie, and i loved it. But, i hate that i didn't got the full storie. I miss the part of how its began.My conclusion in the end of the movie, why she enter the yatch again, is to change that her son dies? Correct? But, i cant even understand how she can stand withoout any scratch in front of the car. Shouldnt see be dead too? Please, how do you look at the movie? cause, i can't stop thinking about it, and how. Driving me crazy!!


postaldog said...

I think the name of the ship is the key. What we see at the end, as she's driving the car is that Jess may be a bad mother, and it's possible that she may have had that accident that killed her son, before the movie begins. So she may be in hell/purgatory where she's forced to go through the torture of thinking she can change the past and save her son. But like Sisyphus, she fails right at the end and has to start all over again (that's why she's uninjured at the accident at the end of the movie). The clues in the movie that show that no matter how she changes things, she's been at that very place hundreds of times -- the lockets, the dead Sally's and all the dead seagulls make it look like maybe this has been going on forever.
It's a theory anyway. Thanks for commenting :-)