Harpoon opens with an omniscient and sarcastic narrator setting the scene and explaining the dynamic of our three main characters, Jonah (Munro Chambers), Richard (Christopher Gray), and Sasha (Emily Tyra). Jonah and Richard are best friends but come from two very different backgrounds. Jonah’s painfully average and dealing with the recent death of his parents, while Richard is a rich daddy’s boy with a temper. Richard’s girlfriend and the final piece of the trio is Sasha, who also doubles as a makeshift mom to both Jonah and Richard.
Immediately the film is packed with action and violence and Richard pummels Jonah after accusing him of sleeping with Sasha due to some secretive texts. Turns out the texts were merely a correspondence discussing Richard’s birthday present, a spear gun, which Sasha repeatedly incorrectly calls a harpoon.
The trio takes Richard’s yacht out for a day trip to try out the speargun, but a chain of unfortunate events that escalate incredibly quickly lead to the near murder of Richard and the disposal of every weapon on the yacht. The director, Rob Grant, paints the situation as ironic, yet terrifying, as the three friends begin to turn on each other in violent ways. While the narrator still pops in every so often to provide snarky, comedic relief, tensions rise as it becomes apparent the three are stranded.
With no weapons, no power, and nearly no water or food, Sasha tells a story of three men stranded on a boat who drew straws to decide which one was to die so the others could drink his blood to survive. This solution seems logical to the characters, but absolutely heinous to the audience.
As time passes, they each become more desperate, especially Jonah who was shot in the hand with the spear gun early on and is suffering from sepsis. People’s true colors are revealed and each actor delivers an amazing performance as their character approaches a tipping point. Chambers does a particularly well job of portraying Jonah’s erratic and unstable state.
Overall, the end of Harpoon leaves you wondering whether there was a metaphorical message hidden within the bloody mess, or if it’s just a warning to stay away from the ocean and toxic friendships. Either way, it’s an entertaining dark comedy that incorporates just the right amount of humor and violence to keep the film funny but also a thriller.
Feature image courtesy of Dread Central