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"Triangle of Sadness" spews seasick satire at the filthy rich

Triangle of Sadness

Starring Harris Dickinson, Charlbi Dean, Woody Harrelson, Vicki Berlin, Dolly De Leon, Henrik Dorsin, Zlatko Burić and Jean-Christophe Folly. Written and directed by Ruben Östlund. Opens Friday at Varsity Cinema and TIFF Bell Lightbox. 150 minutes. R

⭐️⭐️½ (out of 4)

The final part of Ruben Östlund’s Male Insecurity Trilogy, following "Force Majeure" and "The Square," gets off to a grand start on dry land. It skewers fashion and dating with awkward interchanges between models/influencers/lovers Yaya (Charlbi Dean, RIP) and Carl (Harris Dickinson). The film then takes to the high seas — and later a desert isle — aboard a luxury ship of billionaire fools with a drunken socialist captain (Woody Harrelson). Stereotypes, ahoy! Insights are few and vomit is spewed, in what amounts to a laboured mash-up of "Gilligan's Island" and "Lord of the Flies." There are a couple of decent laughs and Dolly De Leon engages as Abigail, a janitor who upsets the pecking order merely by being resourceful and ruthless. It's beyond me why this took the Palme d'Or at the 2022 Cannes Film Festival, especially since Östlund won the Palme not that long ago for "The Square," a sharper act of cynical observance. This year's Cannes jury members had superior options for their golden prize, among them "Decision to Leave," "Close" and "EO," which they recognized with lesser accolades. "Triangle of Sadness" evidently impressed them by inventing a whole new genre: the arthouse gross-out picture. 🌓

—Peter Howell


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