Since Triple 9 seems a bit of a random movie, it’s difficult to determine where to begin with a movie review. The film has all the components to be a truly great crime thriller; yet it never fully reaches its potential. It has a truly great all-star cast; yet each character feels like they’re being held back.
There are some thrills to the movie; but there are also plot holes scattered around that are a little bit too annoying to just forget about. There are so many small things that prevent Triple 9 from truly being a great movie.
The advertising of the movie made it a bit hard to understand what it was about. It’s difficult to really be sure what the film is about until you watch it. Essentially, without giving any spoilers, Triple 9 is about a group of criminals, of which some are crooked cops that are preparing to do their biggest job yet. However, but I won’t give away the secret of the triple 9 – you’ll have to watch the movie for that.
There are only two heists in the movie: one that occurs during the beginning of the movie, and the one involving the triple 9. Both of the sequences are quite enjoyable, and really are quite fun to watch. The first heist has more “players” in it, while the second has far less. The characters all seem well prepared for both of the heists, and this causes the heists to be more tension-filled.
The problem with the characters is that they all feel very one-dimensional. They don’t have anything really special about them; personality quirks, or really personalities at all, seem to be completely absent. It seems like any character could have been in another one’s place and not many differences would arise.
This is disappointing considering its all-star cast, including Casey Affleck, Anthony Mackie, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Woody Harrelson, Aaron Paul, Norman Reedus, and Clifton Collins Jr. It’s a very male-dominated cast, and females rarely ever appear in it, showing up only in a few key scenes in the movie.
On of the biggest issues with Triple 9 is the randomness of it all. There are various points in the film where random things just seems to happen with no real explanation. Characters crossing paths when there is no real indication that they should. This would be fine if the character didn’t actually state they intended to be there, but they did. It just makes some things feel so forced in the film.
The action sequences are all there. There are the previously discussed heist scenes; and there’s a also a chase sequence that has a lot of intense moments. Triple 9 is very tense, and would have benefited from a continuous shot – something that was not used. It is all very organized. Triple 9 has the characters on the screen constantly on their toes, putting us on the edge of our seat as well. The same goes for the climax of the film, which takes place in an abandoned building.
The film is very dark, in both tone and lighting. Most of the film takes place at night or in dark rooms lit up by a red light. It is quite fitting for the tone of the film; and it needs to be, considering the plot of the film. The criminals are quite heartless, and we see that very clearly in the film. Generic? Yes. Ruthless? Yes as well.
Overall, Triple 9 manages to give some thrills with an all-star cast. However, it suffers from randomness and fails to utilize its cast properly. It manages to sit among the movies of mediocrity. The sad part with Triple 9 is that it was capable of so much more. It could be a truly great movie, but it just doesn’t do enough to make it be one.
Here is the official Triple 9 Movie Trailer: