Friday, May 18, 2007

Sounds Like a Mess? Well, It Is!

What happens when three Hong Kong directors each helm half an hour of a feature film—not a collection of stand-alone shorts, mind you, but a feature-length story? Well, it turns out to be a complete mess. The hypothesis was tested and proven with the film "Triangle," directed by Tsui Hark, Ringo Lam and Johnnie To (whose "Triad Election" is playing stateside now). The film, a sort of crime-drama/comedy (depending on which third you're watching), has no discernible sense of character or purpose. I almost went to the press conference just to ask if any of the directors could offer a brief synopsis of the plot, which involves smuggled money, ancient artifacts and a nonsensical love triangle involving a married couple and a cop.

To be fair, the film is occasionally entertaining. Making the final third, To must have realized that the project was a lost cause, and went for straight-out comedy. So at least I started laughing while wondering what the hell was going on.

I guess when you make a film like this through an experimental process, you better show it at Cannes, where people will be interested in the technique. If you try to show the public "Triangle" out of that context, it ain't gonna fly.

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