Triangle of Sadness15¶ Blu-ray, DVD
In any capitalist society the ultimate goal is to make as much money as you can. This creates a number of very wealthy individuals, who some may argue, have more money than sense. And yes, that does include Elon Musk.
For his latest film Swedish director Ruben ÷stlund follows up his 2017 palm d’Or winning The Square, with this feature that casts a curious eye on a group of Żber rich types, as they set out on a luxurious voyage that soon finds itself in choppy waters.
Living the dream are young couple Yaya (Charlbi Dean) and Carl (Harris Dickinson), both of whom enjoy success on the modelling circuit. However, the modelling world is that very rare industry where women actually make considerably more money than their male counterparts, so to a certain extent, Yaya calls the shots in their relationship.
In fact it’s her position as an influencer that finds the couple as guests on board a luxurious yacht, that doesn’t cost them a penny, alongside some ridiculously rich people.
But when the crew are forced to face some unusual circumstances, it soon turns into the cruise from hell for them all.
÷stlund’s film, which he also wrote, is divided into three distinct chapters, with the first one introducing us to his two characters that appear throughout, Yaya and Carl. Initially it comes across as if it’s going to be a cheeky look at the fashion industry, and the modern ‘role’ of the social media influencer. It’s not long before it’s made clear however, that it cuts a little deeper than that.
What it develops into with the following chapters is a satire on capitalism, specifically those that have benefitted from it the most. It is a yacht that soon finds itself sailing out of the ridiculous and into the absurd. It’s 34 carat sharp in places, encrusted with some very dark humour.
And although it’s journey time is on the long side at two and a half hours, ÷stlund makes time fly by with what is an intriguing story from beginning to end with a fair amount of surprises along the way.
It does come tainted with some actual sadness however, as its young star Dean tragically died from bacterial sepsis before the film’s release.
Much like his last feature, ÷stlund is comfortable in the discomforting, making his audience a little uneasy, one way or another. All his cast go for it, including Woody Harrelson, in showcasing how clueless the rich can be, in deliciously poor taste indeed.