In the film Triangle, we learn at the very end of the film,

that the Jess we meet in the beginning already went through the loop (maybe even all of them). She remembers what happens on the liner, and she must remember that her main goal was to stop the entire crew from stepping onto the liner.

When the moment comes when the crew wants to be "rescued" by the liner, why didn't she try to stop them? She hesitates, but doesn't act on it. Why?

  • What show/movie/book is this about? Also, you can hide spoilers by starting a paragraph with >! – user1027 May 2 '12 at 0:26
  • @Keen: The film is "Triangle" (see tags). Regarding spoiler paragraphs: I thought about that, but unfortunately, every single word is a spoiler, so it didn't make a lot of sense to put everything in >! (I even asked in chat). I tried my best to keep the title as spoiler-free as possible. – bitmask May 2 '12 at 0:33
  • My confusion stemmed from how common "Triangle" is for film titles. Wikipedia lists half a dozen of them, with a couple being sci-fi. I see you're asking about this Triangle. – user1027 May 2 '12 at 0:38
  • 2
    What is ontology? (Yeah, I have a dictionary. "The branch of metaphysics that deals with being" didn't help much. I am wondering what you mean by ontology. And why there's an ontology tag on this site. Was Ontology the title of a movie or a TV show?) – user14111 Oct 30 '14 at 5:33
  • I feel like this edit hides the spoilers without covering the entire question. The question at the end is stated in the title anyway. If you disagree, you can revert my edit, but I didn’t like the wording telling me to close the tab. Also, I really don’t see the purpose of ontology here, so whatever else you do with the question, I suggest leaving that tag off. – Molag Bal May 13 '16 at 17:09

After watching it again (I felt a lot like Jess, herself) I realised that she does not forget the events that took place until she is back on the Triangle. We can see her very sombre in the beginning of the film (when we have no explanation for it).

The reason she voluntarily goes back is because of what The Driver says about Tommy: "No point trying to safe the boy, nothing anybody could do's gonna bring him back." If you look very closely, you can see the slightest hint of her expression changing, because she has a new idea. It's not her goal anymore to safe herself, she wants to go through hell again (figuratively speaking) in order to prevent Tommy from dying in the next iteration.

However, when she steps on the Triangle, she falls asleep and forgets the previous events (until it's far too late, when she begins to very vaguely remember), as if they were dreams. After she wakes up we see her brightened up significantly. This is when her new plan to actually get on the ocean liner is forgotten and everything starts anew.


Okay Triangle is actually not a time-travel movie even though it seems like one. So she actually is forgetting what happened before due to traumatic event stress and because of where she actually is. It's actually hell. Or at least it is Jessie's personal hell. Most of what we see is her replaying events onboard a ship named Sisyphus which is the king in Greek myth that was sentenced to an afterlife in Hades pushing a boulder up a hill only to watch it roll back down and have to repeat this forever.

Here is the most logical set of actual events that actually happened. Jess was a shitty mother to her autistic child. She had him in the car and was driving to the boat when a pelican hit the windshield. She pulled over to throw the bird off a cliff but didn't wipe the blood off , probably because she wanted to make the boat. Her kid freaked out and she turned to yell at him and wrecked. This killed her and most likely her kid. Then the taxi driver shows up (grim reaper/Ferryman) and she goes to the boat. The rest that we see is her reliving the events and trying to change the outcome but it's useless because she is already dead and this is her hell. She never realizes this and the audience is never given the full explanation.

  • I got it differently, the corpse the surrounding people find is of the Jess that she killed earlier (with a hammer). You see her throwing the body into the car's trunk. So, the "looping" version of her stays alive. Does that fit your theory? (Also, I don't know enough about psychology to tell whether this traumatic event (seeing her child die) would really (almost) wipe her memory. You see her before she boards the Triangle and she seems to remember what happened before.) – bitmask May 2 '12 at 15:43
  • What I described is the actual events that happened. At that point the loop starts. Going with the Greek myth the Ferryman(Taxi driver) takes her and at that point in Greek myth the dead would sip from the river and forget their past, death and loved ones. This loop goes on for many cycles and is shown by the pile of dead women and the dead birds at the cliff. The dead Jess in the trunk becomes part of the cycle. But the original events are what I described. She did not kill the her that was mean to her kid but in hell she keeps wishing she had and so keeps doing it. – Kevin Howell May 2 '12 at 18:07

I got that the final cicle starts at the end of the film, not that it repeats the first one. The jess of the ending is the jess that wears the mask and gets shot, takes it off to pretend to be the earlier version, lead the couple to the cabin an slits his throat and say's "sorry, but I need to see my son" She is the cold blooded killer, the one with practice. She also says, when referring to the older version Jess that she "is not who they think" We never see what happens to that one, and she isn't explained in the loop shown in the movie. (Although the woman she stabs in the stomach is, she dies several times on the deck, this is the only part I can't figure out)

(Edit: There's an explanation for all of them. The blooded killer is the original Jess at the end of her story arc. It's her second time boarding the cruise ship and she gets killed by another Jess that has boarded twice and is watched by a Jess that has only boarded once. The Jess's that have only boarded once are the ones that push each other into the sea while wearing the mask. There are basically seven stages to her cycle.)

Stage 1: Jess goes onto the cruise ship and pushes the masked killer (Stage 3 Jess from a previous boat) into the sea.

Stage 2: Jess watches another Jess in stage 5 kill the unmasked killer that's in stage 7 while comforting the dying Sally. This Jess in stage 5 is the one she points the gun at in the banquet hall. She boarded the ship on the second boat.

Stage 3: Jess becomes the masked killer and gets pushed into the sea by a new stage 1 Jess that was on the third boat to arrive in the movie.

Stage 4: Jess goes home to save Tommy and gets in an accident and decides to go sailing again.

Stage 5: Jess boards the ship with her full memory which is the fourth boat to arrive in the movie. Stage 2 Jess from the third boat points a gun at her and she kills Stage 7 Jess from the second boat.

Stage 6. Jess hides and let's a new Stage 1 Jess from a fifth boat push Stage 3 Jess from the third boat into the sea.

Stage 7. Jess becomes the unmasked killer and is killed by Stage 5 Jess from the sixth boat to arrive.


She goes back on the boat, because she wants to save her son. Then she goes to sleep and forgets everything, does the whole film again, and kills her son again, and then she goes to the boat, and wants to save her son (because she doesn't know that it isn't possible).

  • Can you back this up with any quotes or interviews or is this solely your (personal) opinion about what happened? – Valorum Apr 26 '14 at 21:11

In the Liner, Jess is looking to stop the loop from happening, she wants to go back to her son. The son that she has forgotten she has ended up killing. When the loop starts all over again, she doesn't stop the people from setting sail because the shock of it all.

While the whole thing looks like she is stuck in some kind of a time vortex, there is an alternate theory suggested in the link below at the end. I liked the batch approach to the explanation as well as it helps understand the 4 Jess' on the Liner:

Triangle Movie Ending Explained

  • Welcome to the site. Answers that provide a link only are frowned upon because the link can become unavailable. Suggest you provide a synopsis of the material directly in you answer. You'll fare better if you do. – Stan Dec 17 '14 at 11:41

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