Harpoon is one of the best horror-comedy movies on boats to come out of 2019. The film screened at Fantasia 2019 on 27th July and comes from the increasingly esteemed director, writer, and editor Rob Grant. If you combine secrets, a love triangle, and friends with history and leave them out at sea what happens? Add a loaded harpoon to the mix and you have a pressure cooker on water. What is a good boat horror movie? This is.
Who is Richard?
Played by Christopher Gray, this tight and brutal performance makes it seem like Richard has it all. A long-term girlfriend, and enough money to buy his way out of trouble. But can he buy his way out of being stranded at sea?
Emily Tyra plays Sasha, the girlfriend of Richard. Who’s really the third wheel in this friendship trio sandwich?
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Munro Chambers plays Jonah. In early scenes, he’s busy getting beaten to a pulp by his twitchy best friend. Is Richard just paranoid or is there really something going on between Sasha and Jonah?
Of course not! and once this is well and settled as a debatable topic, it’s time for a day-trip on the rage machine’s family yacht.
“ I became insane, with long intervals of horrible sanity.”Edgar Allen Poe from a poem about a boat not a movie.
You know those movies you come across that creates a bit of a snowball effect of misfortune? Well, strap in because this is exactly that type of thing. Do they make sensible decisions? Heck no. But that’s what makes this the type of story that makes you feel guilty for laughing. It’s the wicked undercurrent of events led by a well-constructed character-driven bloody mess. This is the type of dynamic that makes you wonder why you’re friends with certain people in the first place.
No Bananas On Board
Harpoon is a story that you need to pay attention to. If Rob Grant is anything, one thing he’s not is a lazy writer. His work on a film I covered last year for Knuckleball led me to discover; Fake Blood and Mon Ami both of which he directed and wrote.
Grants’ ability to get up close and personal in his film making is something I think stands out and Harpoon is no different. His multi-faceted story writing brings fresh ideas to the playing field of film, yet encompasses a variety of genres. Here he begins with an opening shot of a scene that happens in the final quarter. One of my favorite techniques for tension building. The subsequent idyllic backdrop of a day cruise aboard a nice looking vessel is the perfect single location setting for the events to come.
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The narrator for the film is a well-known comedian Brett Gelman, and it’s through his observational narratives that their backstories, quotes from nautical superstitions and other witty comments bring the film to a heightened level of enjoyment.
This trio is the type that doesn’t really go for talking things through. Rather they prefer to indulge in ‘even stevens’ where the offending party gets a free punch. It’s later in the day when Jonah takes off his captain hat and dons a detective cap that things begin to take a turn for the unusual. With friendships of history, there is plenty to chew on. A multitude of events stemming long into the past combined with the ability to second guess how far the other might go causes a pressure cooker of mistrust.
I thoroughly enjoyed
may have looked away and gagged the use of uncomfortable scenarios involving an unlucky seagull and various displays of viciousness. The squeamish may not appreciate some of this so much. If three unlikeable characters stuck onboard a broken yacht with only condiments, a plastic container of water, some alcohol, plus a banana don’t sound like something you’d dig, give it a big pass.
For the rest of you, keep an eye on the Mother of Movies Facebook page for the release details. This is 83-minutes of nastiness you just might love.
I give Harpoon
3.5 what is a good boat movie? out of 5