Directed by Tate Taylor
From 7th October 2016
Reviewed by Colin Serjent
What attracted me to this film – not having previously heard about the 10 million selling novel it is adapted from – was the inclusion of moving train sequences, having earlier viewed Bill Morrison’s Different Trains film using the music of Steve Reich recently staged at METAL at Edge Hill railway station, and a great admirer of Alfred Hitchcock’s The Lady Vanishes, starring Michael Redgrave.
The Girl On The Train is mainly seen through the eyes of three women, Rachel (Emily Blunt), Megan (Haley Bennett) and Anna (Rebecca Ferguson).
Blunt is the star turn in the movie, impressively acting the role as an alcoholic. She is portrayed as both the victim or perpetrator of events taking place around her. The simulated use of blood-red flushes on her face added to the personification of addiction and misery combined.
She takes a daily train journey, passing through a district where her ex-husband Tom (Justin Theroux) is shacked up with Anna, with Megan being her child minder. The views she sees of where they live are not credible. It gives the impression that the train is travelling past their house at the bottom of the garden but in fact the railway line is two hundred or more yards away. Rachel would need microscopic eyes to have seen what she imagined she had seen!
The movie takes us on different time periods in the past, four months, two months, a few days ago, which I liked, giving it a dream-like appearance.
Rachel’s judgements, at first, appear to be clouded by her alcohol abuse – she often drank litres of vodka which were disguised to look like water – but appearances can deceive…
Several of the characters, particularly the parts played by men, are not well formed. To use the proverbial cliche, they were often wooden.
But all in all The Girl On The Train was a satisfying watch. My daily train journey now seems so so boring compared to what Rachel experienced!