Money is the root of all evil, 3.5 readers.
BQB here with a review of Triple Frontier.
This is a first for Netflix – an action film that’s worthy of a movie theater, with a cast of big names – Oscar Isaac, Pablo Pascal, Garret Hedlund, Charlie Hunnam and Ben Affleck being one of the bigger names that everyone’s favorite streaming service has landed in recent memory.
It’s clear Netflix wants to take a big bite out of the traditional movie theater to rental to cable station pipeline most movies go through, and if they keep it up, they’ll get their. Hollywood big shots might just be shaking in their boots over movies like this.
The plot? Santiago (Isaac) is still in the field, while his former special forces buddies are all long retired and struggling to make ends meet. There’s a powerful message in there where one of the ex-soldiers says something like (I’ll botch the line, sorry) “If we had accomplished what we did in any other profession, we’d be set for life by now, but no, this man can’t even afford to send his kid to college.”
Some truth there and if any politicians happen to be listening – yeah. Definitely. War is something the majority of us just can’t or won’t do and the people who do it should be taken care of.
Anyway. Santiago identifies a big score – a secluded house where a drug cartel keeps its money, located in the Amazon jungle where three countries meet – Peru, Columbia and Brazil. No cops, no military to deal with so it should be an easy gig. Use their skills to help themselves for once and live like kings.
From here, (SPOILER ALERT) the movie gets silly, which is a shame because they’re playing it straight. The trek across the Andes mountains to a new life proves more dangerous than previously anticipated, and a combination of bad decisions, infighting and downright greed proves to make matters so much worse.
It’s almost comical how much of the cold, hard cash gets lost along the way – (SPOILERS) – falling out of a chopper, falling off a ledge while attached to a donkey, burnt for warmth, tossed into a ravine and so on. At some point, it gets absurd. I mean, I’m the furthest thing from a special ops soldier but in that predicament, I would just grab as much money as I could carry and then bury the rest in a safe location to return to once the heat dies down.
But I suppose the money serves as a metaphor for how greed complicates our lives and turns us into monsters.
Ben Affleck is good in this. For a moment I actually bought that he was an entirely different person, i.e. a depressed loser dad seeking redemption through ill gotten loot.
STATUS: Shelf-worthy. Good start. Silly though entertaining middle. Admirable though unlikely ending. Netflix is really stealing big cinema’s thunder.