Taut Triangular Thriller,
This review is from: Triangle (Tie Saam Gok) [DVD] (DVD)
'Triangle (Tie Saam Gok)' is a Hong Kong crime-thriller that released in 2007 to good reviews and became an average grosser at the box-office. The film's title refers to the three famous producers/directors (Tsui Hark, Ringo Lam, and Johnnie To) of the movie, the trio of the lead actors (Simon Yam, Sun Honglei and Louis Koo), the three 30 minute segments of the feature and finally the three themes of the movie which are temptation, jealousy and destiny. Too many three's I know.
The movie tells the story of three friends, Lee Bo-Sam (Simon Yam), Mok Shing-Yuen (Sun Honglei) and Fei (Louis Koo) who try to trace buried treasure after a tip-off from a mysterious stranger. As they do this, the trio encounter problems in the form of a corrupt cop, Wen (Gordon Lam Ka-tung) and other unwanted attention.
The film is shown in three 30 minute segments and each one betters the other in chronological order. The first part is a bit slow introducing the characters and the setting. The second part concentrates on the melodrama and the tension building. The final segement is the best and timed to perfection. The pace abruptly increases with unpredictability, exciting action and the film ends in a satisfying manner.
The flaws are the sluggish pace at the start and the immoderate dramatic scenes, which can become annoying.
The top performance comes from Simon Yam who steals the show with a really convincing performance. Sun Honglei is restrained and makes his character mysterious, my favourite in the movie. Louis Koo brings humour to the feature but lacks the acting skills. Gordon Lam Ka-tung as the corrupt cop is competent as the antagonist.
Coming to the trio of directors, Tsui Hark, Ringo Lam, and Johnnie To, each directed one segment each independently in chronological order. The directors had their own scripts and different production teams, both of which were not shared. Taking this approach by the directors, you'd think the film would be disjointed. Surprisingly it's consistent and comes together well. All three make sure the end product is enjoyable and slick. Out of the three, it is To who shines after executing the final and the best 30 minutes. The final stretch has all the excitement.
Overall this crime-caper is stylish, makes you laugh with the dark humour and has numerous twists to keep you engaged.
'Triangle' gets better with each passing minute ultimately hitting the right spot in the end.