Thursday, April 1, 2010

Triangle (2009) - 3.5/5

With the randomness that has become time laspe films, its not all surprising to see another film hit the old watching cache that focuses on odd structuring and timeloops to tell a mindfuck of a story. What was surprising was how well this little film was able to pull it off. "Triangle" may not be original in many of its aspects, but it has a lot of clever heart and soul to it that makes it seem far superior over many of its low budget peers.

Melissa George (Jess) is a single mother desperately trying to get her life on track. With a disabled boy, she desperately needs some time to relax and relieve some stress. So she decides to go for a nice sail with her friends out into the water on a little boat called Triangle. Unfortunately, a nasty storm and a nasty case of deja vu make the trip quite the disaster. Luckily, the sailers are saved by a mysterious giant steam ship that appears...and appears to have no one onboard. Until people start dying that is. The trick of it all is: somehow Jess' deja vu is far too real and to save her friends she may need to jump 'back' through a few hoops to save herself, her friends, and ultimately her son.

Of course, that little synopsis is vague and tells you really duddly do shit about the movie. But the unfolding of the story and how it jumps itself is what makes this movie worth its nickel in watching. Christopher Smith does an amiable job of making a rather doldrum tale (mysterious ship saves crew which leads to a horror tale has been done to death) into a rather intelligent take on a lot of Horror aspects. He has a knack from so pretty cool visuals both big (the pile of bodies on the top of the ship for example) and subtle (the use of colors and corridors and seagulls) and his pacing is quite impressive. Considering the acting is rather hit or miss with the cast, its his work as a writer and director that stands out the best.

At times though, the film seemed to be lacking a more in depth take on the story. Although its unfolding and pacing are impressive, some of the details tend to be only brushed on rather than delved into. Some of the film tends to point towards a weird time disturbance and others towards a Hell explanation of events. It's interesting to think that he wanted to leave it vague, but some of the characters could have been more intense in their 'trying to figure it out' mode. Most of them seem content to just go along (mostly our heroine). The film touched on a lot but seemed too content to just lay out our story in "Twilight Zone" fashion rather than let it dig itself into its viewers a lot. Not a huge issue, but one that keeps it from really pushing itself out of mid range of being cool and unique. Similar to some of the issues found in "Time Crimes".

It was a rather impressive small time film though, and it has a lot to showcase with itself. Considering its basic premise and basic character work, watching the actual story unfold and some of the visual cues make this film a nice little brain teaser. "Triangle" could have been another one of those sleeper cult hits had it delved a bit deeper, but its a sporting good time nonetheless.

Written By Matt Reifschneider

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