Triangle of sadness

Triangle of sadness
Original title:Triangle of sadness
Director:Ruben Östlund
Running time:142 minutes
Release date:13 october 2022
After Fashion Week, Carl and Yaya, a couple of models and influencers, are invited on a yacht for a luxury cruise. While the crew takes care of the guests, the captain refuses to leave his cabin as the famous gala dinner approaches. Events take an unexpected turn and the balance of power shifts when a storm hits and endangers the comfort of the passengers.

Mulder's Review

To Charlbi Dean

"The title of the film is a term used in the beauty industry. A friend of mine found herself next to a plastic surgeon at a party and, after taking a quick look at her face, he said, "You have a pretty deep triangle of sadness... But I can fix that with Botox in 15 minutes." He was referring to a wrinkle between her eyebrows. In Swedish they call it the worry line, it would be a sign that you've had a lot of hardship in your life. I thought it was indicative of our age's obsession with appearance and the fact that inner well-being is, in a way, secondary." - Ruben Östlund

This year one of the highlights of the festival was not the screening of an American film but that of the Palme d'Or at the 2022 Cannes Film Festival, Triangle of Sadness written and directed by Ruben Östlund (Play (2011), Force Majeure (Turist) (2014), The square (2017)). While most of the films screened at Cannes seem to be out of step with the public's expectations, this film should easily be the talk of the town and a great success at the cinema, as the death of its main actress Charlbi Dean, has left its mark on many people. 

Divided into three distinct parts, Triangle of Sadness portrays a young couple of models and influencers who, after an argument in a restaurant about who is going to pay the bill, go on a yacht for a cruise and end up on an island after their boat sinks in a powerful storm and a stormy sea. If Ruben Östlund's films are acclaimed by critics around the world, it is because he has succeeded in creating his own universe in which everything seems possible and in which he does not hesitate to point out the social inequalities of today's society and strives to show the superficiality of our time in which it is better to be rich and devoid of culture and very intelligent but to be part of the middle class. 

Money is at the center of the story, whether it is a bill to pay in a luxurious restaurant or on a luxurious boat on which rocks come to feast and think they can do anything. It is thus jubilant to see them all sick at the table and vomiting everywhere. The pompous side is replaced by a boat drifting and close to the catastrophe. The director takes pleasure in showing the inequalities of wealth and the misunderstandings of the social structure. It is not a coincidence in the third part of the film that the few survivors of the sinking of the yacht will see their place in the social echelon being reversed. 

While many films show the wealthy social class in an offbeat way but do not manage to convince us completely because they often lack ideas, Ruben Östlund masters his subject completely and does not hesitate to go into the worst taste with a meal scene that will remain in memory for a long time after having seen the film, approaching the irreverent humor of Monty Python or even Lloyd Kaufman's films. Everything seems to be possible in this film and the director never hesitates to go all out on these ideas without being afraid of a censorship cutting to certain scenes their excessive side.

Certainly we would have liked a film a little shorter and with a better rhythm, but as it is, Triangle of Sadness remains a jubilant film not to be missed at the cinema.

Triangle of Sadness
WirDirected by Ruben Östlund
Produced by Erik Hemmendorff & Philippe Bober 
Written by Ruben Östlund 
Starring Harris Dickinson, Charlbi Dean, Woody Harrelson, Vicki Berlin, Henrik Dorsin, Zlatko Burić, Jean-Christophe Folly, Iris Berben, Dolly De Leon
Music by Andreas Franck, Bent Holm
Cinematography : Fredrik Wenzel
Edited by Ruben Östlund & Mikel Cee Karlsson 
Production companies : 
Distributed by BAC Films (France)
Release date : September 28 2022 (France), October 13 2022 (United States)
Running time :142 minutes

Seen on September 8, 2022 at the Deauville International Centre

Mulder's Mark: