Triangle of Sadness

Triangle of Sadness (Ruben Ostlund, 2022) Woody Harrelson, Thobias Thorwid, Harris Dickinson, Charlbi Dean; fashion model celebrity couple join an eventful cruise for the super-rich

This reminds of other power-reversal-on-desert-island stories, such as The Admirable Crichton (Lewis Gilbert, 1957), and Travolti da un insolito destino nell'azzurro mare d'agosto (Lina Wertmüller, 1974). But it lacks any interest in psychology. The characters are not human, not motivated, have no back-story, no inner life. They are flat characters, as Forster would have said, with no functionality other than to make satirical points in a comedy of manners. Maybe Molière might have liked it, but I didn't.
The narrative is annoying in that there are long passages where nothing much happens, followed by others where too much happens, in the sense of too much repetitive and vulgar action. Not more projectile vomiting!
The story gets to a certain point - just when it might get interesting after more than two hours, but suddenly stops.
And it's not 'riotously entertaining' - it's not at all funny. Maybe you have to be Swedish to get it. Well, I'm not.

Christina Newland:
The film’s satire is not subtle, but it is riotously entertaining: lampooning the wealthy’s almost childlike reliance on service workers (most often working-class and frequently immigrants) for basic tasks, Östlund presents the beleaguered cleaning lady as achieving sweet karmic justice, taking full advantage of their neediness. Only in this back-to-basics version of a society can anything like upward mobility happen – and even then, rather than creating anything like egalitarianism, Antonia merely replicates the capitalist patterns of the outside world. Although her regime teeters on the risible – what with her rationing of pretzel sticks and borrowing of sexual favours from the island’s resident male model – it does constitute a new seedling cycle of exploitation. SightAndSound.

Garry Gillard | reviews | New: 26 January, 2023 | Now: 10 March, 2023