Four-Sided Triangle (1990)

Posted by Mrs Giggles on August 17, 2017 in 3 Oogies, Idiot Box Reviews, Series: Tales from the Crypt

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Four-Sided Triangle (1990)
Four-Sided Triangle (1990)

Main cast: Patricia Arquette (Mary Jo), Chelcie Ross (George Yates), Susan J Blommaert (Luisa), and John Kassir (The Crypt Keeper)
Director: Tom Holland

Mary Jo is a sweet young lady who seems to be a little simple in the head, if you know what I mean. She is employed by the Yates – Luisa and her husband George – who treat her like dirt. Then again, Luisa treats her husband the same way too, heh. George may be terrified of Luisa but he is also lusting after Mary Jo, even going as far as to try to rape her early in the episode. He fails, fortunately, but in the process he slugs her so hard that she hits her head and suffers a pretty bad head wound. He sets things up so that she experiences an accident instead, but he may be spared of any repercussions when Mary Jo comes to, acting even more simple than usual. Has her head blow caused her to become addled?

Luisa is pleased, as this means that they can keep Mary Jo on for life. Who else will want to take in a crazy girl, after all? Mary Jo soon prattles on about how she has found a man who will make love to her in the moonlight. Frustrated, George tails after her and soon finds her practically molesting a scarecrow. He soon has a bright idea: he will pose as the scarecrow and Mary Jo will finally make love to her. Every night! Woo-hoo! But Luisa is suspicious of George’s feeling for Mary Jo for a long time now, and she seems to be on to him. Will George find many happy endings with Mary Jo? Will Mary Jo ever be free of this despicable couple?

Four-Sided Triangle boasts some strong acting. Chelcie Ross is appropriately despicable as a henpecked husband who nonetheless casts a predatory eye on a young woman helpless to defend herself, while Susan J Blommaert’s Luisa is both fearsome and loathsome. Patricia Arquette is perfect as this innocent young lady whose guileless ways make her easy prey to lecherous men like George… or is she? Ms Arquette’s Mary Jo exudes both innocence and underlying guile that it can be hard to tell whether she’s faking her simpleton act or not.

Thus, it is quite a shame that the story suffers from having a running time that is probably too short for it to be properly developed. The last few moments of the denouement are very rushed, after an otherwise pretty well-paced build up, and I can’t help feeling that another ten minutes could have improved things tremendously. This is one well-acted episode that, for a long time, manages to make what could have been an absurd premise a gripping and engaging one. Shame really about the rushed denouement.

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