"Melissa George, no stranger to horror having been in The Amityville Horror and 30 Days Of Night gives her best performance yet"
Things have not looked good for the British horror scene for quite a while, what with such catastrophic misjudgements such as Lesbian Vampire Killers, the disappointing Tormented and the frankly awful Doghouse earlier this year. There is light at the end of the tunnel though with Triangle, an imaginative and clever thriller from Creep and Severance director Chris Smith.
Jess (Melissa George) is a single mother who leaves her son at home in order to go on a boat trip with her friend Greg (Michael Doorman) and his friends Sally (Rachael Carpani), Victor (Liam Hemsworth), Downey (Henry Nixon) and Heather (Emma Lung). Things rapidly go downhill however, when a freak storm causes their boat to capsize and Heather to disappear.
They’re picked up by a passing steam liner, the Aeolus, which appears to be completely deserted but Jess has a feeling that Heather could have made it aboard. Soon they’re being stalked by a mysterious masked gunman who begins killing them one by one and as the film continues, Jess can’t shake a nagging feeling that she’s seen it all before.
Melissa George, no stranger to horror having been in The Amityville Horror and 30 Days Of Night gives her best performance yet, her character gradually changing from bewildered passenger to determined survivor as she figures out what’s going on. The script is well written – what starts off as an apparently predictable disaster movie rapidly escalates into a film full of increasingly complicated twists – director Chris Smith must have had to keep copious notes to remind himself what was going on.
The premise is not wholly original having been explored before in several TV series (Star Trek and The Twilight Zone spring to mind although Triangle has much more the feeling of the latter) and it borrows some of its imagery and creepiness from The Shining – the long claustrophobic corridors are very reminiscent of the Overlook Hotel but it adds enough spark of its own for it to feel like a loving homage and not a rip off. In addition, shots of the outside of the ship are so bright and harsh that they’re almost bleached, mimicking the experience of emerging from a dark tunnel, which serves to highlight the unfolding horror.
Smith manages to keep the tension high by not having everything quite add up – a feeling which is genuinely unsettling and the ambiguous ending will make you want to go back for a second viewing just to see if you can spot things you might have missed the first time round.
Triangle is a tightly written and directed thriller which provides enough intrigue to keep you guessing to the very end. It’s the best work of Chris Smith so far and proves that there may yet be hope for British helmed horror.
Starring: Melissa George, Michael Doorman, Rachael Carpani, Liam Hemsworth, Henry Nixon, Emma Lung
Director: Christopher Smith
Release date: October 16
Runtime: 99 minutes