A gangster film “exquisite corpse” from three leading veteran directors of Hong Kong action movies, “Triangle” (Tie San Jiao, 2007) is directed in a “tag team” style by Tsui Hark (“Once Upon A Time in China”), Ringo Lam (“City on Fire”) and Johnnie To (“Election,” “Triad Election”), who together concocted the story of three down-on-their-luck drinking buddies who go on a get-rich quest for a lost treasure. To sets the theme of the movie well: “What price do you pay for your desire and obsession?” Like the best of the trio’s work, “Triangle” is a visual delight from its first fog-shrouded images of gleaming Central Hong Kong and the smoky spaces of near-empty pubs, where lonely men hatch plots. Visual continuity of the rich selection of urban space is provided by using a single cinematographer, Cheng Siu Keung. The Hong Kong industry faces pressures unknown in its 1980s-90s heyday, but “Triangle” feels as fresh as today, and not at all nostalgic for that era. It’s potent entertainment. With Louis Koo, Simon Yam, Sun Hong Lei. 100m. 35mm. U. S. theatrical premiere. (Ray Pride)
“Triangle” opens Friday at Facets.
Ray Pride is Newcity’s film critic and a contributing editor to Filmmaker magazine.
His history of Chicago “Ghost Signs” in words and images will be published in Spring 2022.