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"Triangle" Reviews/Discussion - 2021 Horror Challenge

Old 09-28-21, 10:34 PM
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"Triangle" Reviews/Discussion - 2021 Horror Challenge



Triangle (2009)




Selected by Bladz


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These "October Horror Movie Challenge" threads are for the discussion of the films in the 31 FILM SUBSET list.

The plan is for everyone to watch this film on the October day in the thread title, and to start discussing it the morning of the following day.
You may start discussion early if you want, but the preferred plan is for this to be as much of a group exercise as possible, with all of us viewing it "together" and discussing after.

Of course, you are totally encouraged to participate in these threads even if you haven't watched the movie on the designated day.
Even if you haven't watched it in years, or are not participating in the Horror Challenge, please feel free to chime in.



Spoiler tags aren't always used in here, so if you have yet to see the film BEWARE OF POSSIBLE SPOILERS.

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2021 DISCUSSION | 2021 LISTS

Old 10-20-21, 11:56 AM
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Re: "Triangle" Reviews/Discussion - 2021 Horror Challenge

Triangle is a brilliant film less remarkable for it's horror elements than for it's unique story structure and layered play on Bermuda Triangle style myth. This time I noticed that the plot progresses in a literal triangle - moving forward linear at first then a sharp twist to parallel story with one moment being shown in multiple repetitions not advancing but going sideways then it goes backwards to the beginning where it ends at repeat. It's less a plot and more a spectacle even if a few times the mystery dips more towards nonsense than eerie (such as not explaining how killing everyone will advance anything).

I'm not sure where the ocean liner originated, it's atmospheric and a great visual device but makes little sense which is kind of cool but also kind of distracting. Ultimately I think it works and adds a nice implied backstory that this is some repetition that's gone one again and again in different forms for a time.
Old 10-23-21, 11:50 PM
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Re: "Triangle" Reviews/Discussion - 2021 Horror Challenge

I liked this a lot. I had never heard of it or seen it before. I am always up for some mind-numbing time loop type shit where it strains the brain and makes you say "What the fuck is going on?" at times. I thought they handed out the bits and pieces of the story at a nice pace and in interesting ways to keep you sticking around wondering how the next scene creates what the past scene already showed you.

Performances are good and it has a nice tension running all the way through it. I can imagine it might be interesting for a second viewing but not much more beyond that. My biggest criticism is the exceptionally poor CG effects used when most of them could have been easily done practically or optically. The CG is laughably bad at times. I can always forgive bad digital effects but not so much when the effect is something that could have been easily and relatively cheaply done another way and looked a thousand times better.

So this is Death Ship meets Donnie Darko with a dash of chaos from movies like Sphere. Cool concept and pretty well executed.

LARGE SPOILERS BELOW:

My biggest gripes/questions: The pile of dead Seagulls and dead Sallys means that she has been through this multiple times. If that is so, is why doesn't she know the best way to kill herself on the boat? She has fought with herself several times and should know what is going to happen and how she is going to move. And if she has been through many times, why doesn't she make sure she misses the 18 wheeler? Or is that just the spot they currently leave us in this section of the tale and she and the kid are going to die every time in various ways after she hits the seagull?

Enjoyed it! My rating: ***1/2 out of *****
Old 10-24-21, 08:06 AM
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Re: "Triangle" Reviews/Discussion - 2021 Horror Challenge

I’m a sucker for any film with a time loop or similar device, so really enjoyed this one. Yeah, as is always the case in these films there are plot holes like what Spiderbite just wrote, but still a lot of fun and made me think more than most horror films.
Old 10-24-21, 12:33 PM
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Re: "Triangle" Reviews/Discussion - 2021 Horror Challenge

I’m looking forward to watching this a second time down the road. I want to pick up all the little things I might have missed.
Old 10-24-21, 12:57 PM
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Re: "Triangle" Reviews/Discussion - 2021 Horror Challenge

I liked it all right, but it did seem to have issues, some of which have already been brought up. She has been in this loop for a while, and sometimes she seems to be completely aware of it and everything that will happen next, and other times she seems completely clueless. There seems to be a point where she gets her mind wiped, but I couldn't tell you where. The obvious answer would be after the car accident, but judging by her reaction when she arrives at the harbor, I don't think that's the case.

For a while, I was looking for an unreliable narrator or mental health thing, but that didn't seem to be the case. It would be easier for me to say that it's all just the Bermuda triangle if the loop effect were limited to the time on the water. I just keep feeling like there is a clue or some narrative piece that I'm missing that could maybe make sense of things a little better.
Old 10-24-21, 09:37 PM
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Re: "Triangle" Reviews/Discussion - 2021 Horror Challenge

Originally Posted by Trevor
Iím a sucker for any film with a time loop or similar device, so really enjoyed this one. Yeah, as is always the case in these films there are plot holes like what Spiderbite just wrote, but still a lot of fun and made me think more than most horror films.
That's where I'm at on this film. I love it. At least it tries for something unique and different, and there are set pieces that really stick with you, like all the dead bodies on the deck. This was my second time viewing and it was fun knowing in advance what would happen and noticing more clues.
5/5 stars for me.
Old 10-25-21, 12:50 AM
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Re: "Triangle" Reviews/Discussion - 2021 Horror Challenge

While I didn't hate this film, I certainly started out at that point. I'm not a fan of, for lack of a better term, "mind fuck" films, and this one definitely falls into that category. The fact that I can't name a film that I've ever seen a) that was set on a boat big enough to have bunks, and b) that didn't have some sort of weird time warp or an alternate reality or an unreliable narrator (as clckworang mentioned above), and c) that I actually enjoyed was enough to get me to start hating this one early and often. It even trotted out the trope where the yummy-looking food on the ship is actually rotten...and that one's been around since at LEAST Death Ship in 1980.

I was seriously debating turning this one off in the middle, as the hate vibes were coming fast and furious, but when Jess found Sally among dozens of dead Sallies, something clicked in me, and I thought that maybe I was letting the residual hatred for films like Below color my enjoyment of this one. So I did a quick mental reset and found myself (to my great surprise) enjoying the rest of the film.

I still don't think that it's great, but it's also not off the table for a future revisit.

My subset film rankings for the Challenge thus far:

1. Battle Royale
2. Carrie (1976)
3. Curse of the Demon
4. Freaky
5. Slither
6. The Ninth Gate
7. Tower of Evil
8. Witchfinder General
9. A Bay of Blood / The Spiral Staircase (averaged together)
10. Planet Terror
11. Silent Madness
12. Slumber Party Massacre II (based purely on its out-of-left-field aesthetic)
13. In Search of Darkness
14. Road Games
15. Daughters of Darkness
16. Triangle
17. The Collector
18. Cure
19. Hello Mary Lou: Prom Night II
20. Grave Robbers (Ladrones de Tumbas)
21. The Severed Arm
22. Fade to Black
23. The Empty Man
24. The Mortuary Collection
25. Cutting Class
Old 10-25-21, 08:08 AM
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Re: "Triangle" Reviews/Discussion - 2021 Horror Challenge

Originally Posted by clckworang
There seems to be a point where she gets her mind wiped, but I couldn't tell you where. The obvious answer would be after the car accident, but judging by her reaction when she arrives at the harbor, I don't think that's the case.
I really liked this one. I also love a good time loop movie that's well executed and I think this one fits that bill. As for the mind reset, I suggest it happens when she goes to sleep on the boat. Remember when she awoke after the dream of lying washed up on a beach? Heather asks her about the dream and she says she doesn't remember and from that point on it was all just residual deja vu that she feels.

4/5 stars
Old 10-25-21, 08:51 AM
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Re: "Triangle" Reviews/Discussion - 2021 Horror Challenge

I kept on thinking I had seen this move like 3-4 times, confusing it with Death Ship every time. There's even a scene where they go into one of the rooms and you hear water running and I was expecting the 'blood' shower scene. Eventually I concluded that I wasn't in a time loop and got to enjoy the movie. There are some very memorable scenes, including the stacks of bodies that really stick with you. I completely fell for this movie, and felt very strong undertones of Dead Calm/Knife in the Water and Ghost Ship.

I kept on expecting Susan George ....

Before watching I was expecting not to like this one, but that was before I saw the poster with the woman holding the axe.

Last edited by WillieMLF; 10-25-21 at 08:59 AM.
Old 10-25-21, 09:31 AM
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Re: "Triangle" Reviews/Discussion - 2021 Horror Challenge

Watched this one twice now and I just cant warm up to it. I find the repetition of scenes tedious.
Old 10-25-21, 09:36 AM
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Re: "Triangle" Reviews/Discussion - 2021 Horror Challenge

Originally Posted by pacaway
I really liked this one. I also love a good time loop movie that's well executed and I think this one fits that bill. As for the mind reset, I suggest it happens when she goes to sleep on the boat. Remember when she awoke after the dream of lying washed up on a beach? Heather asks her about the dream and she says she doesn't remember and from that point on it was all just residual deja vu that she feels.

4/5 stars
I do remember that now that you mention it. I still have other huhs and whats, but I guess this is really more of an exercise.
Old 10-25-21, 12:32 PM
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Re: "Triangle" Reviews/Discussion - 2021 Horror Challenge

Triangle has been a favorite of mine since I first saw it shortly after it was released. The main character Jess, is forced to relive the same dire events repeatedly, in a never-ending loop and it is ultimately, her own personal experience of hell. Each time, she thinks she can change the outcome and become a good mother to her son, but it's always the same result of crashing the car and killing her son and herself. She dies and "goes to hell", being forced to live her own version of it forever. Triangle is a movie that benefits from repeat viewings and I have noticed things that I hadn't realized on previous watches.
Old 10-25-21, 03:50 PM
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Re: "Triangle" Reviews/Discussion - 2021 Horror Challenge

My problem with films like this is that there's never any clear beginning. There HAD to be a time when Jess first got on Greg's boat without being picked up by the driver, but we're never shown how the whole loop started. Time paradoxes just mess with my brain far too much for me to be able to let go and enjoy the weirdness.

Case in point: Somewhere in Time (spoilered for those who haven't seen Somewhere in Time):

Spoiler:
At the beginning of the film, old Elise gives Richard a pocket watch, which he takes with him back in time. Right before he's yanked back into the present, Elise is holding it, so it doesn't come back into the present with him. So...where did the watch originally come from?


I enjoyed Groundhog Day because there was a clearly-defined starting point to the loop and a clearly defined ending point. I can deal with the weirdness if there's some sort of closure, but Triangle didn't offer any closure at all. It's almost like listening to a joke, getting to the punchline, and then the teller restarts the joke, over and over again.
Old 10-25-21, 05:13 PM
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Re: "Triangle" Reviews/Discussion - 2021 Horror Challenge

Originally Posted by rbrown498
My problem with films like this is that there's never any clear beginning. There HAD to be a time when Jess first got on Greg's boat without being picked up by the driver, but we're never shown how the whole loop started. Time paradoxes just mess with my brain far too much for me to be able to let go and enjoy the weirdness.

Case in point: Somewhere in Time (spoilered for those who haven't seen Somewhere in Time):

Spoiler:
At the beginning of the film, old Elise gives Richard a pocket watch, which he takes with him back in time. Right before he's yanked back into the present, Elise is holding it, so it doesn't come back into the present with him. So...where did the watch originally come from?





I enjoyed Groundhog Day because there was a clearly-defined starting point to the loop and a clearly defined ending point. I can deal with the weirdness if there's some sort of closure, but Triangle didn't offer any closure at all. It's almost like listening to a joke, getting to the punchline, and then the teller restarts the joke, over and over again.
As far as SIT goes, here is an explanation (kinda) from the official SIT website page. Note there is a book spoiler in the below if you haven't read the book SIT is based on called Bid Time Return by Richard Matheson.
Spoiler:
*Where does the watch begin?

The watch has a beginning in the book--Elise gives a new pocket watch to Richard as a gift, engraved with an inscription that includes both their names, and he brings it back with him to the present. He never again speaks while clutching it constantly until he dies of his brain tumor. In the foreword, his brother explains he is publishing Richard's notes as he found them--the playwright's last work-in-progress. He says at the end he will never go to the Hotel to see if Richard's name is really in the register from the past, in case it isn't there and was all a "hallucination". He'd like to believe it really happened, that Richard found his Elise, and that they are together Somewhere In Time.

At the first Somewhere In Time Weekend at Grand Hotel in '91, Richard Matheson was asked this question, and gave the following answer. At one of the early meetings over script changes, he tossed out the idea of the elderly Elise showing up to give him the watch, and as soon as he said it, he realized that it would cause a loop, that it would have no beginning. But it was too late, the others loved the idea, he couldn't retract it and it was in to stay. It became a gag of sorts even during filming, I remember vividly, with Jeannot wearing a T-shirt that read, "Ask me about the watch" and Richard wearing one that read, "What watch?". At the weekend in '93, Jeannot was asked the same question, and his reply was that they were all aware of the watch having no beginning, and that the conclusion of the matter was, the watch is in a time loop of it's own.





I adore SIT and the thing I always thought about was she never said that he gave her the watch. She just gave him the watch and said "Come back to me." So did she buy it later thinking of him after his visit and then gave it to him at that point? But now thinking about it, it still means that Richard is in a loop anyway because he had to be there at one time for her to be able to say, come back. Aww...my head hurts now. Just enjoy the movie ya filthy animal!
Old 10-25-21, 06:52 PM
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Re: "Triangle" Reviews/Discussion - 2021 Horror Challenge

I don't think Jess ever actually made it to Greg's boat . I see it as she died in the car accident on the way there and the time loop starts right after, when she begins living her personal hell. The appearance of the ocean liner, along with the fact that no one is on board except Jess and the rest of the characters, points to it not being real. Then there's the fruit they find on an ocean liner with no passengers, which later on mysteriously becomes rotten. Also, the ocean liner is named Aeolus, who was the father of Sisyphus. Sisyphus was condemned by Hades, in the underworld, to an eternal punishment of repeatedly pushing a boulder up a hill, to only have it roll away. All these things suggest that none of what she experiences with the other characters, other than her son, actually happened in real life.
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Old 10-25-21, 08:36 PM
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Re: "Triangle" Reviews/Discussion - 2021 Horror Challenge

Originally Posted by Undeadcow
This time I noticed that the plot progresses in a literal triangle - moving forward linear at first then a sharp twist to parallel story with one moment being shown in multiple repetitions not advancing but going sideways then it goes backwards to the beginning where it ends at repeat.
The literal triangle makes a lot of sense. Jess never seems to retain enough knowledge to get out of the loop so like Sisyphus she is doomed forever. I wondered if she sometimes did not survive going overboard and being washed ashore but if that were the case then she likely would have seen other dead selves on the beach.

Old 10-27-21, 08:37 AM
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Re: "Triangle" Reviews/Discussion - 2021 Horror Challenge

I actually just started watching Christopher Smith's flicks this challenge and this was the best of the three I've seen. Had no idea going in what it was about and thought it was a clever take on the whole time loop thing, more so reading posts here flushing out some of my questions about aspects of the flick.
Old 10-30-21, 04:02 PM
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Re: "Triangle" Reviews/Discussion - 2021 Horror Challenge

Originally Posted by wishbone
The literal triangle makes a lot of sense. Jess never seems to retain enough knowledge to get out of the loop so like Sisyphus she is doomed forever. I wondered if she sometimes did not survive going overboard and being washed ashore but if that were the case then she likely would have seen other dead selves on the beach.
Yeah, a little inconsistent in that area.

​​​​​​​
Originally Posted by Trevor
I’m a sucker for any film with a time loop or similar device, so really enjoyed this one. Yeah, as is always the case in these films there are plot holes like what Spiderbite just wrote, but still a lot of fun and made me think more than most horror films.
Stealing rbrown’s subset ranking idea:

Curse of the Demon, 8/10
The Phantom Carriage, 8/10
Carrie, 8/10
Fade to Black, 8/10
Cure, 8/10
Battle Royale, 8/10

The Spiral Staircase, 8/10
The Empty Man, 8/10
Slumber Party Massacre 2, 7/10
The Ninth Gate, 7/10
A Bay of Blood, 7/10
The Frighteners, 7/10
Triangle, 7/10

Road Games, 7/10
Slither, 7/10
Witchfinder General, 7/10
Wildling, 7/10
Planet Terror, 7/10
Freaky, 6/10
The Mortuary Collection, 6/10
Cutting Class, 6/10
Prom Night 2: Hello Mary Lou, 6/10
In Search of Darkness, 6/10
Tower of Evil, 5/10
Grave Robbers, 5/10
Daughters of Darkness, 5/10

Silent Madness, 5/10
The Severed Arm, 4/10
The Collector, 2/10

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