The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part
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An outstanding cast and ambitious story help Triple Frontier overcome an uneven narrative -- and elevate the end result above a crowded field of grim and gritty heist thrillers.
The movie doesn't seem to be playing near you.
All Critics (90)
| Top Critics (22)
| Fresh (65)
| Rotten (25)
Triple Frontier features impeccable photography, strong acting, and well-staged action scenes that ooze tension.
There are some zippy chase scenes and shootouts, and tension throughout. But the characters - especially the lethargic Affleck - make for more of a C-Team than an A-Team.
There's a meta-narrative in there somewhere, condemning films like Triple Frontier for exploiting the violence of war for superficial ends, but Chandor doesn't delve into self-analysis long enough to make a point about it.
If you dig shoot-'em-up sequences, "Triple Frontier" has plenty and they're often the default. Yet what it does well - though not enough - is introduce the complicated motivations of characters and what's led them to this somewhat impossible mission.
While the action itself is vividly shot and often quite tense, the characters are so thinly drawn that it's impossible to connect with them, much less care about whether they make a clean getaway with their stolen millions.
Triple Frontier has the good sense to take a macho, "Expendables"-like set-up and turn it inward. It just doesn't go far enough.
The fourth film by J.C. Chandor shows that the director has a good eye for action. [Full review in Spanish]
Uniquely for Chandor, we've seen it all before.
Oscar Isaac, Ben Affleck, Charlie Hunnam, Garrett Hedlund and Pedro Pascal. Oh, were you looking for review points as well?
Triple Frontier is not a waste of your time exactly -- it's a good film to curl up with on Netflix -- but Chandor surely has better movies ahead of him.
The film focuses on the characters and their human dilemmas and turns the fable of the theft of money into a reflection on the limits of actions and their consequences. [Full Review in Spanish]
Nothing offered by Triple Frontier is new to its genre, unless it is the exceptional meaninglessness of its central conflict that refuses to justify the stakes it begs for.
Netflix seems to be the way to go when a big studio doesn't bid on your film for theatrical release, but it is always interesting when watching a film on Netflix that clearly deserved to be seen by a larger audience on the big screen. While the core premise of Triple Frontier isn't all that unique or original, a good film is a good film, regardless of the tired story it's telling. Personally, a good heist story always impresses me, so I was looking forward to this one in general. I'm pleased to say that this is a very, very solid film and here's why it deserves more attention.
Following a group of five retired Special Forces soldiers, Triple Frontier explores how their lives have become boring and that they are all still wishing for the hole that the action in their lives has left them. When confronted with the opportunity to travel to South America to steal millions of dollars from a drug lord, there's hardly any hesitation, as they feel the money could greatly benefit their families and their livelihood in general. Without giving too much away, not much of this story plays out in their favour, which makes for a gripping experience from start to finish.
As aforementioned, I really do believe the formula of this film has been done countless times in the past, but Triple Frontier embraces that and delivers on some very fleshed out characters and a way of telling the overall story that had me on the edge of my seat. From the always great Oscar Isaac as the leading man to the very likeable performance that Ben Affleck always seems to give, to the downright career-altering turns in both Charlie Hunnam and Garrett Hedlund, everyone is giving their all here, and not the least of which is Pedro Pascal, who always seems to receive the short end of the stick when it comes to Hollywood films. His talent far exceeds the limited dialogue he's given here.
Where this film truly shines is in the way it plays out. There are surprises throughout every act and there is one moment in the film that should've been expected, but ended up having my jaw on the floor, due to the fact that I honestly didn't think Triple Frontier was going to be the gutsy film it becomes throughout the third act. Whether being disgusted by the actions of the lead characters or simply just enjoying their banter on the surface of it all, I had a very enjoyable time watching this one.
In the end, Triple Frontier begins as a generic film that re-forms the bond that their friendships once had, but ultimately evolves into a visceral survival flick that takes a couple turns that I wasn't expecting. Although familiar in terms of storytelling, I highly recommend this movie to fans of a good heist flick or those who enjoy any of these actors, because they're all bringing it here. Triple Frontier was a very, very good movie in my eyes and should've been given a theatrical release. It's now streaming on Netflix.
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