Triangle - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Triangle Reviews

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jjnxn
Super Reviewer
August 1, 2012
Deserves some credit for including a bisexual character that isn't a blatant stereotype of a mincing queen, especially considering when it was made but that isn't enough to make the film one to recommend. Poorly directed, horribly dated with some howlingly awful scenes with two horrendous performances from the lead actor and actress, he's much worse than she is. Ray Danton and Dana Wynter are the only ones to emerge with their dignity intact but Ray's part is small and Dana's is almost an afterthought involving a meaningless subplot but she is so elegant and classy that she makes the few moments on screen some of the only worthwhile ones in the picture.
½ January 7, 2010
Paul Richards plays a frustrated novelist in his mid-'20's who glumly decides to accept a teaching job from his wealthy aunt, who runs a well-heeled girls' school in Southern California. And the story keeps on hitting the late '60's hot button issues from there. His aunt (Dana Wynter, who gets top billing yet really has no more than 20 minutes screen time) struggles with trying to reconcile her position of respectability while engaged in a sexual relationship with the school psychiatrist -- you see, neither of them are married, which would be a complete non-issue now, but was obviously SCANDALOUS back then. His most problem student (Tiffany Bolling in her first starring role) is a mouthy troublemaker compensating for being ignored by her jet-setting parents. And his best friend and writing mentor is another professor (Ray Danton) who is so ultra-cynical and with-it he ultimately up and quits the place just after his younger friend's arrival.

The original shooting title of the movie was FACADE, which is ultimately much more apropos to the filmmakers' intentions, because all the characters are engaged in a performance of "Two Faces Have I": Todd Pearson is the teacher but he really knows nothing, matronly Olive Millikan wants to enjoy sex as much as the students she keeps in line, student Sharon McClure just plays at being a bad girl and really wants to be loved, and Professor Di Fermi...well, he's keeping a bunch of secrets. TRIANGLE may have been the sexier sounding title to get the pruriently curious in the door, but it's false advertising: only until the last third of the movie is there even a whiff of some sort of relationship triangle, and it's not even isosceles.

TRIANGLE is not an effective drama. As much as it wants to be depicting "edgy" sexual behavior, it's all too tame -- even a wine party sequence likely inspired by John Frankenheimer's SECONDS doesn't deliver any kind of turn-on. Unfortunately, it's not even good for camp value, because all the performances are reasonably well-acted and quite restrained; there's nothing over the top to ridicule. You can laugh at Paul Richards' perpetual sullenness or Tiffany's bravado, or the portrayals of the "big issues" of the time, but those titters dissipate into general boredom over the course of viewing.

What is interesting to watch in this movie though is Tiffany Bolling. She's compelling, pretty, and definitely makes an impression as a good actress. It wouldn't be later, until her unofficial drive-in trilogy (THE CANDY SNATCHERS, BONNIE'S KIDS, THE CENTERFOLD GIRLS), where she would get to fully display her range and become a cult movie icon.
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