When considering a film like Netflix’s latest action drama Triple Frontier, you can begin to form a picture of what you’d expect the film to do pretty easily. But believe it or not, writer/director J.C. Chandor’s film defies expectations, as it’s both a riveting character study as well as a vehicle for kick-ass action. And it’s the line between the two that makes this film's more active scenes really sing, as Ben Affleck explained to CinemaBlend in an interview during the film’s press day. Affleck’s thoughts were as follows:
One of the nice things about J.C. [Chandor], in his directing, is that it’s always really based in sort of the characters and what they would do. So it never felt to me like it veered into experiences I’ve had where it became really compartmentalized, just about where you’re holding the gun and where’s the explosion and stuff. He managed to do, I thought, really gripping, compelling kinds of action scenes out of stuff where you’re always rooted in what the character’s thinking, what they want to do, what their conflict is. That was really a new way of doing it for me, and I really liked it.
Ben Affleck is certainly no stranger to action, as his career has taken him through several stunt-laden films; most recently seeing him as the DCEU’s former Batman in Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice and Justice League. So hearing his take on how the action of Triple Frontier differs from that of a big budget comic book movie is quite enlightening.
In particular, Ben Affleck’s response has the potential to really make the audience think about what they’re watching in Triple Frontier. When one would expect merely an adrenaline soaked action explosion, what results is a film that bursts with action but then turns the flame down to a slow burn, reveling in the fallout. So naturally, the action and the drama need to blend well together, and in order to really do that, there has to be a common thread.
That thread is the character’s purpose, something that Triple Frontier never loses sight of. So to have action scenes that root each actor within their character’s purpose at all times really binds the film as tightly as the actors did during the filming process. The result is a film that takes on a satisfying amount of depth when telling its story.
Listening to Ben Affleck talk about how the action in J.C. Chandor’s Netflix blockbuster differs from that of a stock action film is pretty damned exciting. As you can see in the video below, discussing Chandor’s approach to the material appeals to not only his skills as an actor, but also that of a fellow writer/director. The resulting discussion is nothing short of impressive:
Action films obviously don’t need to lack drama to work, and drama films can also have enough action in them in order to keep things exciting. That’s the attitude of Triple Frontier and all involved, and the film is a rewarding experience because of it. If you’re interested in experiencing it for yourself, you can see the film in theaters now, or you can catch it on Netflix streaming on March 13th.