TRIANGLE Movie Explained and Reviewed
TRIANGLE Movie Explained and Reviewed - Triangle is a really amazing mind job of a movie that really forces us to consider what really is going on in this tightly woven screenplay. IMDB
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Let’s flash back – and bring back out this brilliant movie. This is the part of the blog where I go looking for really great Indie Films that haven’t gotten nearly enough attention, both here on THiNC. but also across the entire globe. And today’s flashback cafe? The brilliant movie Triangle. So let’s do this… Oh my good lord how I love this movie. I don’t have enough high superlatives for Triangle. I just can’t say enough about this film. And I have to give credit where credit is due… when we were discussing what we ought to put in the world’s best mind bending movie list, I think I had a couple of you mention Triangle to me. So seriously, thanks gang for bringing this movie to my attention. Let’s do it: TRIANGLE Movie Explained and Reviewed.

TRIANGLE Movie Explained and Reviewed

If this isn’t your first time here, you know that we totally dig diving into cleverly complex films that get us to think… cause our brains to turn inside out, and Triangle is a perfect example of a fantastic Head-job of a movie that will take us a while to unpack and decipher. But first, if you haven’t seen the movie… um yeah, you need to leave fairly quickly. Cause this post is going to probably get kinda crazy really fast. But first, if you didn’t even know there was a movie called Triangle, I’ll be nice and let you watch the trailer, and then we are off to the races.

Wait, what? Hahahah. Such a good movie!

Triangle Nomenclature and Groundrules

TRIANGLE Movie Explained and Reviewed

Triangle is an extraordinarily complex setup, with a complex set of inner-locking rules that you think you are constantly breaking, but you actually aren’t. Later on, I will diagram the flows of time and the flows of the various Jesses that we see throughout the movie. But for now we are going to keep the Jesses sorted and in an orderly fashion in this way:

Jess1 = Jess-Prime = Sweater Jess
Jess2 = Jess-Secunde = T-shirt Jess
Jess3 = Jess-Tertie = Bag Jess
JessN = Jess-Quarte = Dress Jess

Where this will get really messy will be when we have offshoots, or variants of Jess2 or offshoots of Jess3… but maybe we’ll call those Jess2a, Jess2b or what have you. This will make more sense as we walk through the timeline and we watch as these splinterings happen. Don’t worry… I’ll call them out clearly. Fair enough?

Triangle Movie Overview

Well, normally, I try to keep the suspense of the movie and reveal the inner locking tricks at the end in the theories section… but with this one, we open with an extraordinarily important line. Jess is talking to her autistic son, and she is saying “You just had a bad dream baby, bad dreams make you think you are seeing something that you aren’t.” This is such a huge line. Alright, alright, we’ll discuss why this is such a big line at the end. But I can’t contain myself dangit. GAH! Regardless, all through the opening scenes we are seeing tons and tons of foreshadowing. Sounds of gulls, sailboats, ocean motifs and forward glances to where we are going. (Or where we’ve been? Something.)

And off she heads in a taxi to the yacht to meet Greg. Greg is someone the Jess meet at the diner where she works. Jess is obviously someone that just needs a day off after caring for her son non-stop. Which, reminds me, we probably ought to introduce the characters in some sort of orderly fashion… no?

Triangle Characters – 

Jess – Our protagonist and mentally unstable hero.
Greg – The boat owner and individual that invited Jess.
Heather – Blind date introduction for Greg.
Victor – Down on his luck hired boathand.
Downey – A childhood friend of Greg’s.
Sally – Downey’s wife, but dated Greg in the 8th grade.

But are there more to these individual players? Do they have a bigger part to play in our little drama?!? Great question. Great question. Let us away… and find out.  Once the six leave the port, Jess has a several hour nap. But pretty quickly after a storm comes up. We learn that Victor doesn’t like Jess because she seemed to not remember where her boy was. Well. About that. And we also get a distress call that will become important later on.

Chaos happens amid the storm. The sails rip and the mast breaks and the hull capsizes and we lose Heather among the chaos. (Look at me throwin down all kinds of nautical term-age. Blam! I’m sure 99% of that was wrong. Here, THE BOAT FLIPS.) And then after the calm, a huge cruise ship appears. An eerie looking ghost ship of sorts. They seem to see someone? Maybe? Or not. And in an attempt to make the details of Revolution 1 make more sense, I think I’m going to give you the details in outline form to help make it more clear:


  • The Five board the ship and begin walking the halls
  • Victor finds Jess1‘ keys in one of the hallways
  • They find the dining hall
  • Jess1 yells out – I SAW SOMEONE… and Victor runs off to find out who it is.
  • Greg and Jess1 head into a cabin (that happens to be the same as her address.)
  • When they do, they see the water running and a sign written in blood, “Go To Theater”
  • “Victor’s in trouble”
  • Downey and wife follow blood to theater.
  • Greg also heads to theater.
  • Victor, bloody, arrives at dining hall, starts choking her
  • Jess1 survives by shoving finger into wound in back of victors head and kills him
  • Jess1 goes to theater and finds Greg shot? And Downey and Sally freaking.
  • Someone shoots Sally and Downey from balcony
  • Critically wounded, Sally and Downey allege Jess shot Greg
  • Then someone with a gun chases Jess into the engine room.
  • They fight on the deck and Jess gets away.
  • Jess1 gets an axe and the drop on Jess3/Bag Jess
  • As Jessgoes overboard she says, “Kill them all, it’s the only way, kill them.”
  • Jess1 bumps backwards into phonograph and the timeline hitches


  • Loop resets, she unstuck the record. And hears them yelling up to boat, “help us!”
  • Jess2 is standing just around the corner from herself, “I recognize this hallway.”
  • On her way dining room, she notices the bloody, “Go to theater” sign was already there.
  • Jess2 sees Downey’s body being eaten by seagulls.
  • Victor comes to deck (“How did you get here so fast?”) and tries to show him Downey’s body in the water.
  • Jess2 was trying to get Victor’s attention when she slammed his head into the wall… er, spike…
  • “I didn’t do this. I didn’t do this.” as Jess2 runs away.
  • In the hold she finds notes written over and over again… “If they board kill them all.”
  • She checks her handwriting to see if it’s hers and then crumples it up… which adds another.
  • Jessrealizes that she has been running this loop indefinitely.
  • Snags and loses her necklace, and piles of hundreds of necklaces on the floor.
  • IMPORTANT – JessBREAKS THE LOOP by going in to the dining hall and not letting Jess1 kill Victor.
  • Jessgoes into theater and shoots at Jesswho is shooting at Downey and Sally who now survive.
  • Jessshot Jessin the head. Jessgives gun to Downey and tells him to trust no one.
  • Jessor Bag Jess takes bag off and tells them if they want to live they need to follow her.
  • All three (Jess3, Downey, and Sally) go to 237 and Jessattacks the couple, and Sally gets away.
  • Jesssays, “sorry, but I love my son.”
  • Sally gets away and radios for help, and then Jessradios as well – which he heard before.
  • Jess2 talks tracks Sally, and tells her that she didn’t do this. But she is laying among a pile of Sallys.
  • Then Jess2 looks over the railing and sees herself attacking Bag/Jess3, Which is the end of loop 1.


  • “Until everyone is dead?” And now she’s determined to kill everyone.
  • And now Jess is trying to stop the boat (ineffectively), and get back to the overturned yacht. “I want to go home.”
  • Then, “Don’t be scared victor, I know how to save you.”
  • Jessuses the blood to write, “Go to the theater”… and dumps Downey and Sally into the ocean.
  • She then heads to the dining hall. “Greg told me to tell you we should all meet in the theater.” She gets ammo, and dresses up like bag Jess.
  • Jess3 follows Greg to the balcony of the theater.
  • Jess3: “I don’t want you to see my face, this isn’t me. And we aren’t here. We are out there on the yacht. And when I kill you, we will return.”
  • Jess3  “The boat comes back when all of you are dead. And I’ll be waiting. And I won’t let any of them board. Not even myself.”
  • Jessfollows Jessinto the hold and then we have the fight. Jess1 has Jesscornered. “You have to kill them. Kill them.”
  • Jessfalls out into the water and wakes up on the beach.
  • So happy! She made it out of the loop! YAY!
  • Jessheads back to the house and discovers an evil Jessin the house with her son.
  • Jess– ” I’m tired of cleaning up after you! All I ask is for one day off.” Jess3 goes around back and gets a SLEDGE!
  • After killing JessN – Jesscomforts Tommy and we are at the beginning again. “Bad dreams make you think you are seeing things.”
  • Jess3 puts JessN in the trunk and while Jess3 and Tommy are leaving to dump the body, she hits a seagull.
  • When she goes to dump the bird she notices that there is a huge pile of them.
  • When they are driving away, Tommy screams because of a truck headed right for them.
  • Jess“Stop screaming.” BLAM.
  • JessN  has fallen out of trunk, and Tommy is on the street as well.
  • Jess3 survived and is now standing next to the car crash.
  • A taxi driver takes her to the harbor. “I’ll leave the meter running.”
  • Taxi driver – “you will come back won’t you?” “Yes, I promise.”

We are already near 2,000 words and we’ve only just covered the most basic of what’s. There is so much else going on here to discuss.

Triangle Innerworkings and Rules

Normally, when we discuss looping movies like this one – say, Timecrimes, ARQ, Edge of Tomorrow, and others – usually, the resulting rule we find is that changes are possible, and even necessary to save your self from this predetermined hell that has swallowed our characters whole. These movies see redemption as a form of works based salvation. Pull off the perfect day, kill the attacking aliens, and survive another day (Edge of Tomorrow). Etc. But in this movie we have a different set of rules, there is no changing the history of the loop… or is there?

This immutableness will be the biggest discussion and debate in the comments I am sure. But Jess2 totally changes the loop! She defends her friends in the theater. She tries to save Sally. Etc. Etc. Right? And Jess3 changes things as well, no!?? Maybe. But another option is that Jess’s loop allows a myriad of permutations and deviations from the norm, but never allow her out of the loop. Maybe? Or could it be she just hasn’t found the right combination of actions and events that will eventually let her free, and we just haven’t seen it yet?? Maybe, but to determine this we probably have to come to a conclusion as to why Jess is in the loop in the first place. Then, and only then, will we be able to determine if she is locked in this loop or if she will eventually get free.


Theory #1 – It’s Just a Dream

In these types of movies, one of the simplest and easiest cop outs ever is the dream theory. Jess has fears about her son Tommy. She worries about not being able to provide for Tommy. She desperately wants a day off, and dammit, life shouldn’t be this hard. This theory really isn’t a stretch. And actually, the more I think about it, the more I realize just how hard pressed to dismantle it. She has Freudian issues and she’s dreaming about them… and her dream is a dream about being locked in a dream. I’ve had this happen in a dream before. Haven’t you? (this always makes me nervous, because I realize just how strange I am.) Yeah, a big caterpillar like in Alice in Wonderland climbed up my body, and chewed my head clean off. My body falls to the ground and as it does my perspective shifts to another me looking on. Aghast at what has just happened to the other me, and I run. Until I come to another room, where there is another Caterpillar, and you know what it does? chews my head clean off. You get the idea.

But I hate this explanation. Because it is the laziest of the lazy explanations possible.

Theory #2 – Triangles As Settling Her Death

Recently, I discussed another movie like this one wherein the same things were happening over and over again. It was called Stay. Wherein a similar revolving plotline ensued, and the only way out was for the protagonist to make peace with his death. Is that is what is happening here? Could it be that Jess has died, and she is just working out this fact? A lot of things would snap together if this were true.

For example, the death of Tommy, and this recurring horror of this haunted boat? Maybe it’s just a symbol for Jess working out the fact that she is dying and needs to let go. For this theory to work out there are a number of loose ends. Like, for example, our protagonist, the one the camera follows never dies. Not from the beginning to the end. We watch as she arrives at the harbor, and then heads out to the boat, and learns how the loops are working, until she finds herself back on the shore again. She never dies. So where does this death come from?

The most logical death would be while out on the sea. One of the things that bothered me about this movie is the character Heather. Heather was the one that was a blind date for Greg, the boat owner. But early on Heather tells Greg, yeah, I’m not interested either. And then she dies, almost immediately. Just completely disappears. So she is the epitome of a superfluous character. And I may not know a ton about screenplay writing, but um, that’s not how it generally works. But could it be that Heather was just a surrogate for Jess? And Jess is the one that actually dies?

Let’s say that Jess actually dies in the storm, or is close to death. And the rest of the movie is her just working out her death. Putting the missing pieces to rest. The flaw here? Um, yeah, she never does work through the flaws of her life. She never does lay down the past, and come to peace with anything at all. So how can that be what it’s about. Stay, and Jacob’s Ladder, show very clearly the protagonist coming to peace with their life and their death. Nothing like that happens here.

Theory #3 – The Sisyphean Gambit

TRIANGLE Movie Explained and Reviewed - because AWESOME!!!

Look. It’s really really rare that philosophical details are tossed into a movie for zero reason. I believe this even more than I do believe that superfluous characters aren’t introduced into a movie. So, what kind of philosophical mumbo-jumbo did the screenplay writer throw at us? Well, remember when our favorite cast walk onto the boat and begin discussing the name of the boat, The Aeolus? Well, Aeolus’ son is the one and only Sisyphus. Who is Sisyphus? A knave, and swindler, that lived his life cheating everyone he ran across. (There are like a billion accounts explaining exactly how) but eventually Sisyphus is cursed to live a life of rolling a boulder up a mountain only to watch it roll back down again. And to do it again. (It is fairly annoying that the only philosophy that most screenwriters use has something to do with Sisyphus.)

Sisyphus is famous simply because it is a simple metaphor for one worldview of how the world might work. Pointless toiling, over and over again. And then eventual – if you are lucky – death. But what does Sisyphus have to do with this movie? What if the author was just making a comment about life. It’s horribleness? Maybe it’s just a commentary on the pointlessness of life? All of us are forced to toil at the wheel and one day we’ll die?  Maybe, but seems to be lacking something.

Theory #4 – Sisyphean Punishment

But what if, we were close… but not quite there with theory 3? What if, like Sisyphus, Jess is cursed for something horrible? What if she was forced to toil like Sisyphus for all time? To constantly struggle to get out of the loop and perpetually fail, only to watch the boulder roll back to the bottom of the ocean all over again? But Jess is lovely. She’s perfect. But, we know that she isn’t. Like, obviously not perfect at all. Anything but. Right? I mean, you could list example after example without breaking a sweat. I mean, all her alternative reality selves that are killing everyone? Yeah, that? Sure, our Jess is a good Jess. Right? Or maybe not.

One of the things that just kept coming back to me was how many metaphors there were for her life. The room number with the sign, “Go to the Theater”, was the same number as her address, 237. Coincidence? Nope. And what about the clocks? Were they all broken at the same time coincidentally? Or was 8:17 an important moment in the life of Jess? Hrmm. Maybe? At the beginning, we knew that Greg left her a sticky saying to come to the harbor at 8:30.  So what happened at 8:17?

The only time we are shown what happens at 8:17 is at the end of the movie, when we see “evil Jess” or JessN beating Tommy and treating him horribly. This Jess is mired in the chaos of life and taking care of an autistic son alone. She believes she deserves a day off. She is myopicly focusing on her own selfish needs and desires. (Granted, she doesn’t have an easy life, but really? Beating an autistic child?) And 8:17 is when she takes the boy and drives away… straight into an oncoming truck. Could it be that real Jess is actually JessN? could it be that our Jess1 is actually just a made up fiction?

Yeah, I personally think that JessN  killed Tommy, and herself, in a car accident. And it was this moment that spawned the endless looping. It was this unforgivable selfishness that doomed her to a life of constantly searching for a way off of the Aeolus. It was this sin that the gods punished her indefinitely for.

I don’t know, what do you think of this awesome movie? I only wish I had seen it when it first came out. Let me know which theory of yours or mine is your favorite. And always, feel free to point on the million things I missed in this way too long movie review! hahah. Can’t wait to hear your theories.

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79 Responses

  1. Burkess Salamandre

    Excellent analysis.
    Such a great movie! So clever!
    I agree with your final theory that she and her boy were both killed in the car accident and the loop was her punishment. (And that was no cab driver!)

    • Gressi

      Let’s just take the fact that the taxi driver is Ares(or Death himself or whatever you want to call it) for granted for a second
      In the last scene of the movie we see Jess getting out of the cab to board the boat. The suspicious cab driver now asks if he can leave his taximeter running and if she will come back. Jess replies with “I promise”
      Now let’s remember what Sally said on the Aeolus: “Sysiphus was punished because he promised something to Death he couldn’t keep”.
      Jess is trapped in this vicious circle forever because Mr Cabdriver aka Death punished her for not keeping her promise to him after she died. And now her metaphorical boulder always rolls down the hill again when the circle completes and Tommy dies.

  2. EL Ritter

    I just saw this movie and like the way the you break it down. I agree with your final theory. It makes the most sense to me.

    • Taylor Holmes

      Well that is interesting! I don’t think anyone has EVER agreed with me before! hahahaha. Just kidding. Thanks for swinging by good sir.

  3. Kenny Martin

    I think the cab driver is Ares (the God of War), because it is said that Ares intervenes once Sisyphus tricks Death into handcuffing himself. Ares frees Thanatos, who is Death, and brings Sisyphus to him.

    Also, one way Sisyphus is said to have tricked Death is by ordering his wife not to bury him properly, including not placing a coin for the ferryman to take him across the river, from one world to the other, and so Persephone is persuaded to return him to the River Styx. After Jess goes through the 3 iterations on the Aeolus, she wakes up on the shore. Maybe this is symbolic of Sisyphus returning to the world of the living on the River Styx?

    An interesting observation is that the drums of the band that is playing when Jess crashes into the truck have the initials of the Aeolus on them.

    • Taylor Holmes

      Yeah, the incestuous stories of Greek and Roman mythologies have always intrigued me. But studying them is always tricky because there a numerous versions of each one. As I was researching for this I saw the deltas in the various stories and the complexities and just punted. So, Kenny, as always, you’ve come to my rescue yet again. Hahah.

      I do think it makes sense to see this entire movie as an extended modern mythology. The characters. The insanity. The in fighting. The repetition. It all makes sense.

  4. Erik

    Oh boy, did I love this movie. Confusing as hell on a first watch, and yet still amazing. I’ve been given a lot of crap for loving this, but your write up is inspiring another watch.

    On my first watch I remember debating with myself if changing the timeline/loop was possible, and I remember deciding it wasn’t. Yet you state there is a point where jess deviates. I’ll have to rewatch and then maybe we can debate!

  5. Meghana

    I watched this movie a couple months back but after reading your reviews and analysis of Coherence and Primer, I searched for your analysis of this movie on your site and I am so glad that I found it.
    I have spent days researching about every possible theory concerning this movie. I love it THAT much and your analysis pretty much sums it up.
    I can offer another theory though. okay, this is not ‘my’ theory but stumbled upon it online. As per this theory Jess, like you believe is an evil selfish mom and in during one of her anger fits at the above mentioned time, she actually kills her son. Remember the lot of cuts and blanks in the very first scene that clearly showed soemthing happened but we are not sure what? That will be Jess killing her son and then it’s his body that she dumps in the trunk, but she meets with the accident on the way, but everytime the loop repeats, she tries to save her son but eventually one way or the other he ends up dying because no matter how much she tried now, she can’t alter the reality of her son dying and that guilt can never die. Also instead of counting every revolution ( in Ur case) as a seperate look, I think the three of them come together to form one big loop. So this big loop keeps recurring over and over again. And Jess 3 Actually saving her son is also a part of the same loop which again, is a futile attempt from her side ( the nunber of dead sea gulls prove that).
    Or it maybe that Jess never dies in the accident and in fact dies when the sailboat meets with the storm but by then she has already killed her son and neatly lies to Victor about it. I feel in that storm all of them except Heather die and that’s why Heather is missing from this never ending purgatory because she survives.

    What do u think about these theories?? I would love to hear your opinion.
    PS: I willl be following all your posts henceforth. you are really good at this.

    • Taylor Holmes

      “Jess, like you believe is an evil selfish mom and in during one of her anger fits at the above mentioned time, she actually kills her son. Remember the lot of cuts and blanks in the very first scene that clearly showed soemthing happened but we are not sure what? That will be Jess killing her son and then it’s his body that she dumps in the trunk, but she meets with the accident on the way, but everytime the loop repeats, she tries to save her son but eventually one way or the other he ends up dying because no matter how much she tried now, she can’t alter the reality of her son dying and that guilt can never die. Also instead of counting every revolution ( in Ur case) as a seperate look, I think the three of them come together to form one big loop. So this big loop keeps recurring over and over again. And Jess 3 Actually saving her son is also a part of the same loop which again, is a futile attempt from her side ( the nunber of dead sea gulls prove that).

      Or it maybe that Jess never dies in the accident and in fact dies when the sailboat meets with the storm but by then she has already killed her son and neatly lies to Victor about it. I feel in that storm all of them except Heather die and that’s why Heather is missing from this never ending purgatory because she survives.

      I had thought that I had mentioned this theory in here somewhere – I saw a youtube video discussing this exact idea. She murders her son and all the watches and clocks stop the moment she did it… no? Something like that. It is very very compelling. Thanks for commenting! And for HENCEFORTH following my posts!!! hahaha.

    • Ambrosia

      Completely agree. That explains the significance of the room number being same as her house number (where murder occurred) & the 8:17 (time of murder).

  6. rejoin

    She’s punishing herself – the only way to escape would be, to accept herself for what she did and stop trying to fix it by all means necessary. The taxi driver to the harbor is death. He offers an end to the loop, pretty much begs her to end her own suffering.

    The movie is a dark existentialist view of the Sisyphus myth. Her quest to save her son keeps her existing cause it gives her a reason to go on – but not in a positive way.

    The existential perspective on Sisyphus (by “Albert Camus”) is arguing that Sisyphus is “a happy man” because he has a never ending purpose in his live.

    I think this movie is trying to point out, that purpose alone doesn’t make a good live and can very well be hell. It’s a crash with eastern philosophy. There, giving up all longings and all purpose is what leads u to nirvana, to salvation, to heaven – Clinging to them – be it for selfish or altruistic reasons – is the hell of live.

  7. Chocolate man

    Hi, loving the write ups. What strikes me about the film is the paradox it creates in that Jess 1, 2 and 3 exist within an impossible loop independent of Jess N (Dress Jess), who is the real prime Jess. How did the loop have a possibility of ever beginning if dress Jess is always killed by her looping self… Mind actually blown.

    • Taylor Holmes

      Thanks mate,
      Do they even say that in New Zealand? Not the g’day mate, crodidile dundee greeting. Just the mate bit. Anyway you make a great point. If the prime mover Jess, or Jess Prime, dies… how’s any of it possible? Like the movie Predistination… the sum total of that movie is that question you just asked. Have you seen it?

      The only way that it would be possible… (assuming the time machine etc, hahah) is if jess prime survived the first round and got out of the way somehow? And then in subsequent loops she is killed? Something like that anyway. No? It would have to transition into the loop we see here. We’d need some sort of clutch or something so we don’t grind the temporal gears! Haha.

      Thanks for swinging by.

      • Chocolate man

        Cheers mate, I tend to agree with your view as well, that the original Jess N killed her son and herself at 8.17am in the car crash, spawning a Sisyphean style death loop of Jess 1 etc which exists in another dimension. Brilliant film – if there are any others up there with this one please let me know ;) Have seen Predestination, really enjoyed that also. Thanks from Kiwi land.

  8. Kenny Martin

    Chocolate Man,

    If you haven’t seen Coherence I would recommend that movie for you :)

  9. Justin

    I just felt that the boat and the scenario after she got home was purgatory, she wasn’t in heaven or hell and the taxi driver was the boatman to take her to the other side. Maybe if she did it enough times she would get it right and they wouldn’t die. But, they died first starting this cycle, so no matter how many times she tries it has an inevitable conclusion.
    I still don’t quite understand the abandoned ship/Bermuda Triangle tie in but the movie reminded me a lot of Jacobs Ladder and I loved it.

  10. Stephanie

    I think that is a fantastic analysis~, very good indeed!! I also think that possibly the taxi driver is Death himself~ not sure, but everything you said is 100% in my book~~ Thank you!!

  11. punya

    The number of bodies of dead sallies and gulls shows the real meaning of this movie…the Buddha once said if we count the number of times we were born and died this whole earth will be a burial ground..and all the people that we meet on a regular basis could have been someone’s we are all related to one the real mother and father in this birth is really not our own mother and are all alone in this world.
    No one can help you ..only you can do it
    That’s why melissa said don’t trust anyone

  12. Maddy

    I feel like her inability to kill herself is telling as well. When she “breaks” the loop the first time by saving Victor from herself she had the opportunity to kill the new version of herself but couldn’t. Then later on when wearing the bag, she hesitates long enough to give her other self the opportunity to escape. And she never seems to consider that ending her own life (as in suicide, not murdering her other self…) might end the loop. She’s able to murder everyone else, but holds herself above them in the guise of “saving” them the next go round. Her selfishness leads her to resent the time spent caring for her son and that her scant free time is being “wasted” on catering to him. Then later her want to get home (“to her son” supposedly) outweighs the fact that she’s murdering the others; in her mind it’s a necessity and they’re expendable. It isn’t until she’s standing in her own way when she gets back to the house that she takes that step, so she can replace the old version with herself.

    • Stephanie

      That’s a pretty good observation. Her selfishness is for sure at the very core of this film and explains many puzzles within puzzles in this enigmatic movie. I think what you said is well spotted.

  13. Bill

    I saw a chart somewhere else, but someone had mapped it out and speculated that the Jess getting back on the boat at the end becomes the versions of Jess we did not see the first time through. As such, she eventually becomes the masked version she watched get killed (as well as being the Jess who kills her). Which works nicely for ensuring all the boat actions line up, though I forget how they meshed her eventual death on board with the infinite cycle idea, but they did. Somehow the copies all have to die while the main trapped version cycles around and around…

    …Which gets back to the film ending. My theory is this is the both the origination of the loop trap and the restart. Before the movie started, Jess got herself and Tommy killed in a car crash similar to shown. Death, the taxi driver, tells her there is nothing to do for Tommy and offers her a ride to the afterlife. However, instead going with Death, she attempts to return to save Tommy and inadvertently creates her punishment loop. On loop exit (the end of the film), she is again offered the ride by Death and told to return, but she still thinks if she can successfully break the loop she will have saved her son. So she willingly returns to the dock and reenters the cycle, thus continuing her punishment in hopes of eventual success.

  14. Hope

    Hi Taylor! I just watched the triangle and it leaves me confused so I searched for the triangle explained.Thanks to your theories at least I’m not so confused anymore right now.haha! I also recommend you to watch and explain the 3 episode series of ‘And then there were none’ it’s a mystery suspense adapted from the book of Agatha Christie. It’s a really great movie,hope you watch it.

    • Taylor Holmes

      Agatha Christie?!? Blech. A friend and I just recently did a book swap, I recommended one book for him, he recommended one for me. I told him he had to read Infinite Jest, but he couldn’t physically pick it up. Way too heavy. Too many words. So I let him off the hook and told him he needed to read Everything is Illuminated. And he? He threw an Agatha at me. Which one? Oh gosh it was awful. Awful. And for the record? He didn’t even crack Everything. Didn’t even start it as far as I can tell. Zip.

      So yeah… I’m a little angry about Mrs. Christie (Miss? No idea) right now. Utterly. How about this Hope. You watch The Invisible Guest in the Room, and comment on my post, and I will watch your three part thingy. Fair enough? Actually, it’s not fair at all, because The Invisible Guest is right up an Agatha Christie lover’s alley. But whatever. I just give. And give. AND GIVE. bah.

      Merry Christmas. hehehe.

  15. Kenny Martin

    Hi Taylor,

    I’m sorry to hear you didn’t enjoy the Agatha Christie novel! :( Which book did you read, by the way?

    I’m not sure if detective mystery novels just aren’t a type of book you find enjoyable, but if you want to give one another try I would recommend one of the early Ellery Queen novels, such as “The Roman Hat Mystery,” “The French Powder Mystery,” “The Dutch Shoe Mystery,” or even “The Greek Coffin Mystery.”

    Sorry for continuing this conversation’s drift away from “Triangle” lol!

    • Taylor Holmes

      Murder of Roger Akroyd. Awful. Terrible. I could explain exactly why I hate it so, but I found it like a terrible video game where you are screaming at the screen, don’t do that, you are the bad guy, stop talking to him he is the one pulling the levers!! All for naught. But whatever. Different strokes.

  16. Movieman

    Thanks for this analysis! Great points and i agree with all but i have a few questions would appreciate if someone can clear them up for me:))

    1- are the characters on the boat real people or fictional and are just part of the ongoing suffering of loops that jess has become part of?

    2- when at the end jess goes to the harbour seeking to go through the loop once again to try and save her son, why while on the boat was she behaving like she hasn’t been there before? Like when the storm comes in, she is panicking and asks greg if they r gonna b ok and able to go back home…isn’t she supposed to have been through this like a thousand times before? So shouldn’t she be well aware of everything that’s gonna happen? If not is it possible that every time she’s at the harbour she gets a memory wipe and resets and has no clue what’s gonna happen on the trip?

  17. Gavin

    Hey there.
    I’ve just found your site and am really enjoying your in depth looks at many films that I’ve watched recently and then I found this one.
    Firstly, I love this film even though I only watched it for the first time last year it has stuck with me ever since.
    Secondly, really good work at even trying to unpick all that was going on, not an easy job. And then to get it out in writing too? Bonus points!
    Like many others, I thought long and hard about this one, and then did some searching about it to see what other people thought and there is plenty out there.
    There were a couple of ideas that seemed to make sense to me, other than your explanations. One was that there is a double loop (and there was a decent effort at an illustration of it too), A and B loops if you will. If i remember rightly, when Jess falls overboard that is when she washes up on shore, when she gets killed onboard she restarts in the sailboat, giving 2 loops (or are they spirals?) that, eventually, feed into the other loop.
    The other thing that has stuck with me, that I couldn’t quite get my head around was that when she knocks the record player the camera actually passes through the mirror and this alters something, but as I said this is where my brain drew a line!!
    Great stuff, keep it up!

  18. Sam

    Okay, the loop has a start, right? So in the very first iteration when Jess was going to the harbour for the little trip (assuming she decides to wear shorts and sweater) was she supposed to take Tommy with her? * Because if Tommy was to stay in the house or in school than the Jess who survives and returns to her house only to kill her “Dress” self wouldn’t have to do so. She could just wait for her “Dress” self to leave and then take Tommy with her somewhere (probably to some other country). And then at the end of the first iteration when Jess (the one who survives) comes back to her house (also back in time) there would be “Dress” Jess and Tommy in the house. But we have already take one pair of Jess and Tommy out of the loop hopefully. Is that how it works, because if it does then in every subsequent iteration, we’ll get a pair of Jess and Tommy out of the loop (provided the “Time Travelled” Jess chooses not to kill the “Dress” Jess).

  19. Abby

    was she pretending to forget everything or she really forgets everything when loop resets (on tom’s death) this is the only thing annoying me.

  20. srinu

    I think there two versions of jess in movie ,one is jess with memory and another jess without memory.The first jess is with memory loss i.e who was injured by shooting and second jess is the one who came out at always a jess with memory will be breaking promise and trying to save herself and her son ignoring others.
    The Sisyphean goes knowingly with stone to the uphill and when stone rolls down he forgets everything and again try to go up .This is my theory .

  21. Yousuf Shovon

    Well, I think she forgets the memory from the loop when she sleeps over a couple of hour in the boat Triangle. If she dose not. Here is what I think of escaping the loop:

    At the end of the movie Jess knows what the loop is playing with her. Now, if she wants to save her son from death, she needs to repeat the loop, complete the loop again till she comes back again to her home and kill the recreated Jess (who slaps the son, doesn’t have any idea of what’s going on with the time loop) carefully so that her son doesn’t notice the killing. After killing her recreated version, she can simply deal with the dead body by herself alone, not with the kid. If she avoids the car riding with her son, there might be a possibility to escape the loop.
    This can be made possible only if she contains the memory from the loop.

  22. Clare

    For me, she was either in a coma or dead but in limbo the place we are after death. The kid died in the car accident as the taxi driver says at the end “nothing they can do for him” taxi driver being (death) but they don’t mention her why? because she now has a choice, which the taxi/death guys say’s to her. She can either keep driving on to the afterlife of peace or she can go to the harbour which represents the tormenting hell. She can forgive herself for being an abusive mother and accept that her child died with her as an abusive mother or she can keep reliving the perpetual cycle of punishment for what she did.

  23. Michelle

    This movie has messed with my head. I have not stopped thinking about it all night. My theory is that Tommy is already dead from the opening scene. Jess is rocking him telling him it’s going to be okay but it’s already late because she killed him from banging his head against the wall. She relives this torment on the ship when she slams Victor against the pole and runs away “I didn’t do this, I didn’t do this”. She’s not accepting the fact that she killed her son and attempts to run away from the truth. The ship is her purgatory and she can’t run away from the truth. She relives this when she follows Sally up the stairs and is by her side with her last breathing moments and while as she’s dying (reflecting Tommy’s last words) “please don’t hurt me”. She says she would never…. This is when she realizes that in order to stop the tormenting is to get rid of everyone that boards the ship that is a constant resemblance reminder that she has killed her son. Killing them to stop the curse. After she kills the reminders, she must go straight to the source and kill herself. Looping back to the original scene, because Jess 1 rings the doorbell, alerting Jess N or dress Jen just goes to show us she’s been looping indefinitely. Back to the opening scene…. Jess just killed her son. The clock stops at 8:17, she puts Tommy in the backseat (dead) as if he’s still alive and they are going to the harbour to meet Greg at 8:30. She hears him crying and keeps looking in the review mirror only to be constantly reminded that he’s actually really dead. She decides to take her own life by driving in front of the truck. She tries to justify his death by making it seem like they both die in a car accident together, but she can’t cheat death. Death already knows what happened. That is why the people say there was no chance for Tommy. He had already been dead and she was in the process of dying. Nobody knew this but her and for this she is eternally punished. She’s visited by death, the taxi cab driver and she’s given a chance to accept her death and complete her ride to the afterlife but Jess is so selfish and wanting a chance to have a break that she continues with her fantasy to go on that boat ride and imagines how her day might have turned out had she actually gone on the boat. But death’s meter is running and the longer she avoids the fact that she is supposed to die already, she tries to cheat death and make a promise she can’t keep. She WILL relive her son’s death over and over and can’t do anything about it. This is why she has to kill everybody before getting on that ship. She isn’t suppose to be there in the first place. She was supposed to take death’s taxi cab without stopping.

  24. b

    “8:17 is when she takes the boy and drives away… straight into an oncoming truck. Could it be that real Jess is actually JessN? could it be that our Jess1 is actually just a made up fiction?
    Yeah, I personally think that JessN  killed Tommy, and herself, in a car accident. And it was this moment that spawned the endless looping.”

    ~Why would dead jess be randomly wearing a different outfit to the one she wore ‘as’ she died..?

  25. dan

    I agree with Gressi. Also, it should be perfectly obvious by the end that Jess╵, whom we open with, is not the primary Jess, and that there are two distinct—literally distinct, not loop-cycle-stage distinct—Jesses. Jess╵ is doomed to die right early, and dies she does: early and irrevocably; bludgeoned to death by the real Jess.

    This is disguised at the beginning. It’s something of a loop cheat they’ve done here. However confusing the loop rollercoaster, there needs to be one, and only one ride on the track. I don’t make them, but them’s the rule(s). The primary Jess is the only looper in this flick; she goes all the way through and round and round and round her Sysiphian Möbius strip, with the original nuance that she’s having partial amnesia/deja vu events.

    None of the others are part of any loop. Cathys are piling up elsewhere on the ship, and being conveniently recycled by gulls in this underworld’s judicial economy. Presumably they fly off elsewhere and poop on other Hadean theaters of justice, or turn into eagles to peck out some poor hubristic soul’s liver.

    I gather though, that her troubles will eventually cease after a million-odd dropped lockets send old Aeolus to a permanent watery grave, taking all of them with it, and leaving the vindictive Death drumming his fingers, his taxi-meter ticking for all eternity. Hey, karma’s a bitch, cabbie.

  26. danR

    I agree with Gressi. Also, it should be perfectly obvious by the end that Jess╵, whom we open with, is not the primary Jess, and that there are two distinct—literally distinct, not loop-cycle-stage distinct—Jesses. Jess╵ is doomed to die right early, and dies she does: early and irrevocably; bludgeoned to death by the real Jess.

    This is disguised at the beginning. It’s something of a loop cheat they’ve done here. However confusing the loop rollercoaster, there needs to be one, and only one ride on the track. I don’t make them, but them’s the rule(s). The primary Jess is the only looper in this flick; she goes all the way through and round and round and round her Sysiphian Möbius strip, with the original nuance that she’s having partial amnesia/deja vu events.

    None of the others are part of any loop. Cathys are piling up elsewhere on the ship, and being conveniently recycled by gulls, and in this underworld’s judicial ecologically balanced economy, presumably fly off elsewhere and poop on other Hadean theaters of justice, or turn into eagles to peck out some poor hubristic soul’s liver.

    I gather though, that her troubles will eventually cease after a million-odd dropped lockets send old Aeolus to a permanent watery grave, taking all of them with it, and leaving the vindictive Death at the dock drumming his fingers, his taxi-meter ticking for all eternity. Hey, karma’s a bitch, cabbie.

  27. Nick

    Explain one thing to me….why a red sweater when boarding the sail boat but blue when she’s on Aeolus? And then red again when she’s back at her house?

  28. George Voges

    I noticed the change in sweater color too but dismissed it thinking it was just the lighting/grading. But looking back at it, you are right. At 43:07 you can see her sweater is blue but at 1:28:10 she has on a red sweater.

    I also read somewhere that the ship approaches them from two different directions in two different scenes at 21:29 and at 43:04. What’s up with that?

  29. A Man

    The following is what I collected from my first watch, but I believe I’m not mistaken in the few things I’d like to point out.

    Logically the loop has to have started somewhere and not necessarily end. That is if there is a loop at all. The end of the movie got me thinking:

    The first time Jess boards the yacht at the beginning of the movie, it is obvious that something is bothering her, that she is aware that something is happening, however further on it is revealed she has no recollection of the events that will take or took place in the ship. That is if we assume that she is telling the truth when she claims she doesn’t know why the ship looks familiar. She doesn’t have an obvious reason to lie, does she?
    At the end of the movie we know for a fact that the Jess that boards the yacht (the same Jezz that witnessed the car accident) knows what has happened and what will happen if she goes along. Come to think of it, where did this Jess come from? She just popped out of nowhere in the scene of the crash.

    I’m just following the narrative here but trying to make the inconsistencies more obvious to all. To be honest, I feel like nothing made sense to me in this movie because it was written and directed not to. The aim was to create a story where what has happened and what will happen is not clear so that the viewers will turn to theorizing and making what they want out of the movie (like in Mullholland Drive, Jacobs Ladder, etc..) However, they did a bad job at it, leaving a lot of things unnecessarily hanging and having a lot of inconsistencies in the plot.
    Surely the movie does try to get us thinking the right way by making all the mythological and sketchy philosophies references.
    To get this out of the way, the theory that sticks the most to me is the following:
    – Jess kills her son and hides his body in the trunk of her car, which she uses to get to the harbor.
    – On her way to the harbor she is killed in an accident.
    – The taxi driver is Death and Jess literally promises to him that she will come back from the harbor, so he leaves the meter running. She however does not let go and never comes back, thus she receives the Sisyphean punishment, doomed to experience the same events again and again without being able to change the outcome. It is not an actual loop, and she does bend the rules, however the outcome is never changing. She can only alter the way by which she reaches the end.

    I haven’t been as descriptive as I can but this is all the time I have. The main reason I wrote this is that I could find logical inconsistencies and missing key details in all the comments read. Obviously though what anybody writers makes sense in their mind. What I write makes sense to me but may not make sense to somebody else, or there may be an obvious mistake that is not so obvious to me.
    This is the main issue that I want to address. The only way for one to reach an absolute conclusion about the movies plot is to read everybody’s take on the movie. That is because each and every one of us has missed something, and every last detail is crucial to uncovering the actual sequence of events. What one has missed may be obvious to another, thus reading my or someone else’s comment may cover up any gaps or questions that others comments raise.

    Excuse my repetitive or incorrect use of some words but I’m not a native English speaker.

  30. Kaydi Devlin

    I want to know at what point she decided or learned that if she killed the others their boat would come back around, which I’m not sure is even completely necessary because she didn’t have to kill the other version of herself for the sailboat to come back starting another loop. I want to know why she believes killing is the answer, and why does she even want the sailboat to come back? I get the ideal of not letting the new set of the 4 of them come on the ship but she doesn’t really try to figure out another way…. but I agree with the comments that she is selfish and I actually ultimately didn’t like the movie because I felt like there wasn’t a real explanation and I’m not a fan of that. And my last grievance is the shoes… she’s still wearing those wedges after washing up on shore? And she washes up on shore just quick run, in the shoes, from her house? Frustrating. I may watch it again just to see if I can figure it out but from your review and readers comments it looks like this has been done by persons much more qualified than myself with no success. ‍♀️

    Be eventful!

  31. Lottie

    This movie has had me up late at night this past week thinking about new theories, ideas, etc.
    I personally feel like with all the foreshadowing in the beginning, it points to Tommy being murdered originally before the loop. I think she went into a rage and murdered tommy at 7:15 (the time her clock at home was on) and put his body into the bag and loaded it into her trunk. She then drove to the harbor and got into an accident and died at 8:17 (hence why her watch and the ships clock were the same). Once the ferryman (cab driver) came to take her to the afterlife, she could not accept her fate/death after killing her son, she asked him to take her to the harbor. She proceeded with the boat trip and felt guilty, especially once she arrived. I think they probably left the harbor right before 9. There she fell asleep and the loop reset, and wiped her memory. Heather said she slept for a couple hours, so let’s assume she woke up around 11. She thought everything before the reset was just a bad dream. The storm hit around 11:30 (also why Greg’s watch read11:30) and killed everyone besides Heather (because she was not apart of the ship scenes/situation). There on the ship was several seperate loops that all feed into Jess wanting to go home to see/save her son. Once she washes on the shore, she heads home, believing she has ended the loop. When she heads home, I personally feel like she rang the doorbell to distract her original self from killing Tommy. Then she kills her original self and puts her body into the bag and takes Tommy with her to dispose. Once she hits the seagull, it’s foreshadowing. The superstition of a bird hitting your windshield is an omen of death.
    Once she stops the car and throws the seagull onto the beach and she sees dozens of them, she knows the loop is still running through it’s course. Once she wrecks into the truck, the scene becomes dark (indicating death). The ferryman comes once again, and mentions that there is no use trying to save the boy. He is trying to tell Jess that Tommy’s death is inevitable, and can not be cheated. She then gets a ride back to the harbor and the ferryman tells her he is going to keep his meter on, and asks her if she will be back. She replies with “yes, I promise”, however she does not keep that promise. There for creating and causing her unending hell. This movie is a modern-telling of the Greek mythology story of Sisyphus, Son of Aeolus (The name of the ship the loop is on).

    This movie/storyline is so complex and genuinely a movie that makes you think. This is just my interpretations on the movie, just from what I have gathered. I’m sure there is so much I have missed. Excellent movie, Milessa George is phenomenal.

  32. Aristotle

    I”d like to make a request.

    Can you make lists of movies in the same categories? Or maybe a movie map? You have a top 20 time travel post. But, I was thinking of getting through all the movies here by Thinc-genre. Closed boxes. Abduction revenge? Alien movies? Surreal?

  33. Eric

    Did anyone notice that when loop one ends. Jess one beats bag Jess with the black metal rod and throws her off the boat. In the rest on the iterations she has the ax and doesn’t kill her she just falls over the railing. Not sure if it means anything but it can’t think of an explanation for that

  34. Jemma

    My theory is the Seaguls created a constant time loop to have a constant source of food.
    They are eating all the dead bodies on the ship.
    Jess looks ominously at a seagul when on the sailboat.

    Right at the end of the entire film, we see a Seagul at the docks, and it flies off and the camera follows it.
    The seagul was checking Jess gets to the dock for the next iteration of the loop, then he flies off to the ship of doom to await the fresh meat.


  35. Lizzty

    So there are actually people who think this absolutely idiotic movie is smart and awesome…. So this woman starts killing everyone of her friends instead of simply going to meet them when they come on the ship and telling them what is happening. No, instead she sneaks around and starts killing all of them. Without trying once to talk to them and tell them what happens when they come on the ship. The best part is when she makes it home and instead of telling herself not to go on the yacht she starts hiding and sneaking around again then kills herself too (?!). I think she loses her memory in the taxi and starts all over again. So all this killing of friends, yet she has time to take dead birds off the road. I can’t imagine something more idiotic. This movie is brain cancer. Not to mention the actress is so untalented. All her acting = making dumb, shocked faces. Or maybe the movie just wanted to show us how bad a lot of single mothers are.

    • Taylor Holmes

      love love love me some contra opinions – fire it up and burn it down Lizzty.

      Personally think that you are taking the movie too literally. You get stuck in a loop, you tell your friends as the board the ship. Sure. You do that the first time. Or the second. Maybe the third. By the 73rd time though, you put a bag on your head and wield a katana like a samurai. I personally think this is a metaphor of the weight of sin we carry, and the debt we collect throughout our lives, and so I think the nutjob on the boat makes perfect sense. But I see it from your perspective too. A literal one, that assumes the loop just began.

      But that explanation cannot overcome an explanation for bad acting – as you see it. So there you have it! hahah.

  36. Erick

    Lottie’s post is spot on. Her version of the events fit perfectly and explains it well.
    After reading everything here and elsewhere, her description made me go -ah ha- and satisfied my curiousity.

  37. Brian

    I’m not sure how this scenario went exactly when speaking of timelines, but I do notice that everyone is missing what I felt was an important clue… At the end before the car accident, Tommy actually seems to know the truck is coming before it’s actually seen…hence his crying. He was screaming mommy before the truck ever came into view. I’m going to be bold and say that he too is going through a loop….as he seems to already know they were about to hit the truck. Hell, I don’t even know if this should be considered as a loop being that the others bodies were piling up. I think in a loop, everything would just be reset fresh and you just try again…but in this movie, it wasn’t resetting… remnants were left from each cycle…blood, bodies, etc. And how do you explain the abandoned ship from the 30s with fresh food on the table? That storm wasn’t a storm, but some type of wormhole that created a break in between alternate dimensions…And they were all crashing into that one. Don’t you love when someone comes along and throws everyone for a “loop” with a totally different view. Cheers

  38. ARM

    I’m a little slow on this one – finally watched it and the reference to Aeolus and Sisyphus were so spot on — poor Jess is rolling a rock up that hill and the rock is of her own making. When she thought she’d escaped and saw the pile of gulls on the beach….her despair was palpable.

    I’d read your walkthrough some time ago and it was only recently I was able to make the time to sit down and watch it — don’t know what I would have made of it cold, but this is one to watch again and again.

    In all of the film, the person I felt the most sorry for was the taxi driver. Poor guy, still waiting on his fare to return…

  39. David

    Taylor – great write up on this movie – To begin with, I was lucky enough to find your website a few weeks back and start watching your recommendations – And then being able to come and read your review and all the comments has made watching these moves extremely enjoyable – We have the same taste in movies – I love these obscure mind blowing movies but find it difficult to review them with any of my friends (They hate them or simply have no desire to watch) – So thanks for bringing me this movie and review

    Not being able to close the loop in this movie has driven me crazy – So this is my attempt to make the loop make sense

    The very first Prime Jess – She is an abusive, mentally unstable waitress who just wants a day off – She has plans for the day with Greg on his boat and is bringing Tommy – We all see her condition that day, she is already off her rocker beating her son for breaking a toy and spilling some juice – I think this is when she snapped and cross the line into insanity – Instead of only hitting her son, I think this is when she killed him – The things we hear her saying about nightmares and hugging him, it is all from her perspective – She is comforting a corpse

    At this point she has lost her mind – Blocked out the murder and everything that happened and gets in a cab and goes down to the harbor – I definitely agree with the idea of this cab driver being death and the cause of this loop as punishment and eventually as her test to acknowledge what she just did and accept responsibility

    Before getting on the boat and while on the boat – all the evidence is there that she is way gone – In her mind, she sent Tommy to school and is enjoying her day off on the boat

    As the events on the ship conclude – Her motivation is to get home to her son – Within her loop, she had the good fortune to get home in the past prior to the original dress Jess killing Tommy –
    As she views the moments prior to her son being killed – All the memories come rushing back – She makes eye contact with Tommy and runs around her backyard frantic for a weapon and has decided to kill her original self dress Jess to get her life back and take her place in this version of time

    She murders dress Jess and by doing so saves Tommy’s life – We see her hugging and comforting Tommy with the same statement about nightmares – The original time she killed Tommy, these words were for herself to help her forget – Now they are actually for Tommy to get him to forget

    Jess decides to get rid of the evidence – Stuffs dress Jess in the trunk and goes – During this drive, you can see mental state and abuse of Tommy returning – Nothing has changed – The last scene we see of the loop is the car accident where she had to witness yet again her son dying at her hands – The cab driver once again is there as death to givfive her a ride – She again on her rocker blocking everything out choosing to go meet Greg believing that Tommy is at school

    This explains everything I think and closes the loop into a continuous cycle of the same events happening – Alteast it can help me sleep tonight

    Let me know what you think

  40. Tony

    Too much Gregs on the list TRIANGLE REVOLUTION #1

    Greg finds Jess1‘ keys in one of the hallways (it was Victor to do that)
    They find the dining hall
    Jess1 yells out – I SAW SOMEONE… and Greg runs off to find out who it is. (also Victor)

  41. Rachi

    I love this movie so much! I first saw it maybe 5 years or so ago when I rented it from Redbox with my sister. I’ve seen it 2 or 3 more times since then- the most recent being tonight. I really can’t find a reason why she has the mind erasure of what all has happened unless it’s meant to be an allegory for Purgatory. No matter what though, she can’t escape her son’s death. There are so many different theories on this movie. I love it.

    I always wondered though, why couldn’t she just shoot from the ship down to them on the over-turned yacht before they even board? Just kill them right away and jump overboard? The only reason I can think of is the mind erasure and she doesn’t know what needs to be done until it’s too late. There are so many angles to this movie! I love it and I loved reading all the comments here. :D

  42. Stren

    I watched Triangle and I am trying to find a logical explanation to events in the movie before giving up for the dream or punishment theory.
    What is most difficult to explain is how we have more than one dead seagull. There should be no other dead seagulls! Even if there are, they should not be in various stages of decomposition (similar to what we see on the boat).
    In the case of the boat as well as the land, we see that both of them are moving forward normally in time (or the dead seagull will not have decomposed). In the case of the boat, we can see that the same loop could have been going on for a week, so that is possible. Everyone inside the boat (unfortunately, one) is aware of the reset. Makes sense.
    In the case of the seagull however, the seagull cannot be hit by her car a week ago because all this happened on the same day! If the land resets, the surviving should notice it. The land does not reset (living people not aware of reset) and the land moves forward normally in time (decomposed dead seagull), she could not have killed the seagull before the day.
    Other than this, the rest of the movie can be explained. The Triangle is a ship that collects 5 characters and apparently seagulls from different extremely similar dimensions. Any surviving characters including seagulls are sent back to same day in one or a very small set of parallel dimensions.
    Is this the first journey of our protagonist? I think not. (She dreams of crabs in the boat. Or all our protagonists are connected somehow and it is the first trip of this Jess.)
    However, I don’t think Jess intentionally killed Victor with the nail. The last time she probably murdered all of them in a different way. Like all times she first tries to save them before giving up hope. (Or did she? Remember the horror scene where she kills Victor with her finger? Or is the information from another Jess.) This time though the murders have perfected themselves into a loop, so after two resets she plays the part.

    Taxi driver to Jess “you will come back won’t you?”
    Jess to son “Yes, I promise.”

  43. Sarai

    When watching this movie, maybe it had to do something with the storm perhaps about the myths of the Bermuda triangle. It is off the coast of Florida, and the movie is called Triangle. It may be relating to how there have been disappearances when entering the Devil’s Triangle and never to be returned. That is my theory I’d say.

  44. Kieran

    Really enjoyed this write up, thank you for taking the time to do it. I loved this film.
    Also, love the Room 237 ref from The Shining in this movie wasn’t a simple Easter Egg but strong foreshadowing.
    Ties into the Jack Torrance narrative that he was “always” the caretaker in the hotel and that in this film Jess has always been on this boat.
    I also subscribed to theory 4 after watching. It’s rare you get a film like this that pays off its premise in a satisfactory manner, but this one really manages it.

  45. Gus

    Just watched the movie yestetday and it blew me away. Melissa George is , and the story is amazing. I’m in the theory 4 camp as well. Thanks for the review, and thanks for this awesome blog, there are so many film here l have never heard of that am looking forward to seeing!

  46. johnny

    Nice. Theory #4 is the correct one, and the time 8:17 has significance in explaining this theory.

    The takes place entirely in the afterlife and is a Sisyphean punishment for Jess of endless struggle (with herself, literally and emotionally ie. guilt) because she’s responsible for the death of her innocent son, who died along with her in the car accident of her responsibility as she hurried late to a “day for herself” (the note on the fridge says her date at the harbor was at 8:30).

    Though we see a clock in the morning prior to the crash, it does not say 8:17. HOWEVER, the scene of the accident itself, and trust me you have to actually be looking for this but it’s there…At the end, after the accident as the Taxi driver stands over Jess’s shoulder we see a shot of Tommy lying dead on the ground with a passerby kneeling beside him trying to help. If you pause at that shot and look at the man’s watch it reads…8:17 (you’ll also notice Tommy’s shirt, which has a triangle on it, one of many triangle tie-ins). It is also at this moment the driver says to Jess” There’s nothing anybody can do for him now…” This moment also provides the only chance for Jess to actually escape the loop (which is an infinity loop), if she can accept Tommy’s death (and responsibility for it), but she never will instead forever enticed to go back through the loop again in hopes of “saving’ Tommy, which she can’t).

    Thus her infinitely perpetual struggle with herself, both literally (ie the ship) and emotionally (guilt/acceptance).

    The time 8:17 also seen in another highly significant scene that most have never noticed that also speaks to theory #4. As Jess walks into the room with the phonograph, there is a wall clock behind her and the time, 8:17. It is this also in this scene where the loop “resets” with its next iteration.

    Though everything we see in the film takes place in the afterlife, Aeolus has woven the last moments of her and Tommy’s life (and death) into this infinite punishment. Yes indeed, at 8:17.

  47. bruno

    An amusing bit to think about is what Jesse #2 was doing when our Jesse was still the freshly arrived #1.

    Yes, she did drop the key. Yes, she accidentally hurt Vic, too. But from then on apparently nothing . No appearance in the dining room (where our Jesse “breaks” the loop later) nor in the theater. Total passivity, it seems. Where our Jesse, in between leaving a note and dropping her necklace, later grabs a gun as #2 and then proceeds to provide for some action.

  48. bruno

    What’s fun to think about is what the Jesse ahead of ours was doing while our was still #1. She did drop the key and did (accidentally?) hurt Vic. But then she seems to go radio silent, if I recall correctly, until much later when she becomes the “bag version” and slits people up with a knife.

    So what was she doing while our Jessie defended herself against Vic and people got shot in the theater? Hanging back and watching? Maybe even enjoying the action? What type of character was she supposed to be, anyway?

  49. Jared

    I just watched this, and my theory is that Jess can’t come to terms with killing Tommy in the car crash, and therefore cannot accept the ride into the afterlife from the taxi driver (Death). Death says, “There is no point trying to save the boy,” trying to coax Jess into not getting on the boat again. However, Jess cannot give up hope that she can save her son with just one more try. Her being trapped in the loop is by her own choice.

  50. Adriel

    This is my hypothesis: the Triangle is about the Bermuda Triangle: somehow, Heather escapes death, but the rest were sucked into a looping reality. If this movie is about Jess being punished for causing her son’s death, or for failing to keep her promise to Mr. Death aka Taxi driver, then why are the rest stuck (and seemed to be punished) in the endless cycles?

  51. Paul

    Hi. This is great. I have seen Triangle three times now. I have it on Bluray but always seems to be on Horror Channel. I would like to mention the part about Jess’s dress. Remember she gets ink over it just as the door bell goes? Presumably she changes before heading out on the highway and then gets killed in the accident. Any preceding Jess’s will kill Jess the dress before she has a chance to change. This could also be the point when she would have killed her son. I also agree that the memory button is reset when she sleeps as she says she has had a bad dream but can’t remember it. As for the superfluous characters who travel with her I am totally lost. Also her return to shore is rather abrupt. There is something regarding the loop. Jess is trapped in a recurring cycle. This sums up her life with her child who is autistic and she does say in the film that he can’t deal with change. Everyday is the same, which is why she tries to escape only to be trapped by the loop. “I want to go home!” She states now realising that she misses her boy. At this point she doesn’t know what will happen next. A little like the film Memento where we discover the details in reverse. The ending is the beginning etc. I now list this film as one of my all time favourites. Once watched, days later still thinking about it. Brilliant.

  52. Stern

    I loved this movie and have to add my thoughts.

    I felt like the loops were a mirror of her life, loving her son during the good times (helping her friends survive), mistreating him though the bad (getting frustrated and killing them), but being unable to admit to herself that the task for caring for him alone as a single mother was impossible (continuing to loop as if she could change things, the next time will be better).

    She admits during the movie that her life with her deeply autistic son was the same struggle day in and day out with no change if I remember correctly. This is her Sisyphean struggle. Whether it is pride, or having no one to turn to, she needs help she cannot get. The comments here call her selfish for wanting a day off, but no one asks where the father of the boy is and why he abandoned them.

    To break the cycle all she had to do was not get into the cab to knowingly loop again and try to save him. Walk away and be free. But her inability to admit that her life was impossible leads her to try and try and try again to get the boulder up the hill.

    Triangle hits on some deeply uncomfortable themes about motherhood and the expectation of perfection that comes with it. I actually kind of believe that this is why the movie is rated so low, people don’t want to come to terms with the fact that mothers are imperfect human beings and not tireless super humans.

  53. Michael j

    I believe alot of what you said actually I’m about to watch triangle again for the second time I really loved it I think The Sisyphean Gambit is right on the money honestly because she is in a endless loop I believe when they sip wrecked they either all died and was left in like a burmuda triangle type deal to constantly live something over and over again because it happens to all the other characters as well but another theory is she dies in the car accident to begin with and that starts the loop when she still goes to the harbor and what we see when she is standing there by the car accident is another loop of herself still not being able to change the outcome. And when she promises death in the cab that she would be right back and didn’t come back he cursed her to relive it over and over again so her dead self goes on the boat falls asleep is made to forget everything and her friends maybe died in the boat accident and while in her loop or burmuda triangle was forever be made to die over and over again or she was made to witness it and had to go through all that on the liner just to have those few moments with her some were she still fails to save him or change the outcome and keeps lying to death so keeps reliving it I have so much more to say about it but I will stop there I absolutely love this movie gonna watch it again now hope you like my remarks thanks always Michael j .

  54. Lisa

    Boy, this movie gave me a migraine when I watched it a few years back and might be the most confusing time loop movie there is. My issue was with Jess. I couldn’t bring myself to sympathize with her character at all which tainted this whole film for me. She was a terrible mother and while wanting a break is reasonable, I still think she is guilty of her son’s death and this is her personal hell which she deserved. An endless loop of trying to save him which she cannot do.


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