Almost every good action or thriller director should at some point have the ambition to make a movie set on a moving train. The operation is as elementary as it is irresistiblealways maintaining a narrative momentum thanks to the factor of the constant movement of the stage, establishing in a simple way the tension of the film, which will later get better or worse.
Well you understand David Leitch in ‘Bullet Train‘, which keeps its nostalgic effort of violent, funny and incorrect action always alive and entertaining thanks to always having it on rails. the movie with Brad Pitt is the perfect excuse to rescue some great movies located on trains that we can see in streaming. Four movies of guaranteed fun.
‘The train’ (‘The Train’, 1964)
Address: John Frankenheimer. Distribution: Burt Lancaster, Paul Scofield, Jeanne Moreau, Michel Simon, Howard Vernon.
If we have to talk about trains, it is almost a religious obligation to include this unquestionable classic by John Frankenheimer, who here continued one of the best streaks a director has ever had (‘The Man from Alcatraz’, ‘The Manchurian Candidate’, ‘Seven days of May’). ‘The Train’ is an exciting film, shot with incredible precision and power. A feverish and intense exercisewhich makes an incredible plea against the Nazis between hypnotic displays of working trains, as well as an imperial Burt Lancaster.
‘The train from hell’ (‘Runaway Train’, 1985)
Address: Andrei Konchalovsky. Cast: Jon Voight, Eric Roberts, Rebecca De Mornay, Kyle T. Heffner, Kenneth McMillan.
There are few filmmakers as fascinating as Andrei Konchalovsky, who jumped you with ease from making profound Soviet dramas to frenetic exercises in Hollywood action. And you can do the latter based on scripts by Akira Kurosawa, as is the case with this insane and highly entertaining ‘The Train from Hell’. A movie full of muscle and intensity, who also does not give up making a scathing portrait of the human condition through his characters. A very complete movie.
‘Unstoppable’ (‘Unstoppable’, 2010)
Address: Tony Scott. Distribution: Denzel Washington, Chris Pine, Rosario Dawson, Ethan Suplee, Elizabeth Mathis
A bit like what’s happening to ‘Bullet Train’ now, this lively and unrestrained exercise in locomotive action received some disdain for its understated but undeniably enjoyable ambitions. But time -and also the efforts of people like Tarantino who have insisted on how good it was- has put this fabulous work by the Scott and Washington duo in its deserved place, with Pine adding well to the mix. Gushing energy from the first minute to the last.
‘The passenger’ (‘The Commuter’, 2018)
Address: Jaume Collet-Serra. Distribution: Liam Neeson, Patrick Wilson, Vera Farmiga, Sam Neill, Jonathan Banks, Clara Lago, Florence Pugh.
And speaking of duos, few have worked as well in the last decade as Liam Neeson’s with the Spanish Jaume Collet-Serra, making better old-school thrillers than their apparent B-series status suggests. ‘The passenger’ is the best of them all, thanks to a good mix of suspense, investigation, restlessness and good measure when it comes to taking advantage of the physical presence of the actor.