13 August 2011

Movies: Unstoppable

Unstoppable (2010) http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0477080/

Thriller, some Action

While moving a string of freight cars in the train yard the engineer jumps out of the locomotive cab to set a track switch. A mistake in setting the controls sends the unmanned locomotive off on to the main line under full power, dragging the freight cars which included some filled with fuel and toxic chemicals.  Meanwhile another loaded freight train is headed in the opposite direction on the same line. Watch as everyone scrambles to stop the train before it potentially derails in a highly populated area.
The film is based on a real incident, which if you are curious you can read about it at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CSX_8888_incident.

Stars Denzel Washington, Chris Pine (Capt Kirk in the Star Trek reboot), Rosario Dawson, and a great supporting cast. Even has Ethan Suplee in it, which I only mention 'cause I've been catching him popping up in some good supporting roles over the years after first seeing him in "Mallrats" and "American History X". If you ever happened to catch "My Name is Earl" you'd recognize him as Earl's brother Randy.
Directed by Tony Scott who has probably directed something you've already seen - like maybe "Enemy of the State" or "The Last Boy Scout" or "Man on Fire" or "Top Gun". He also directed the remake of "The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3", which, if you've read my review, I didn't particularly care for. But that's okay - because "Unstoppable" more than makes up for that film.

Great cinematography, good story, great performances by the cast, and once that thrill ride starts going it doesn't stop until the end. I was pleasantly surprised. Going into it I wasn't sure if a 'save the train' movie would have the legs to go the distance and even debated watching it or not. Glad I did.

Yes the film has a little 'punching up' from its inspirational source and has fictionalized characters and dialog and such - but that's why the film works so well.  Don't look to it for historical accuracy, just sit back and enjoy the thrill ride.

Great Friday night thriller with light action film, a real 'edge of the seat popcorn burner'.

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