Friday, June 5, 2009

Night Train (2008) R - 3 Stars

Though a more appropriate name might be "Box of Greed," where do I begin with this one? Picture a mesh between the "Outer Limits" visiting the "Night Gallery," immediately timed warped to the "Twilight Zone," ending up at "Ripley's Believe it or Not." This is yet another one for my bizarre collection with definitely a comedic twist. Having the feel of a made for television movie, the hacking scene alone would banished it to late night. Probably only worthy of 2½ stars, I have to give it a 3 as I did love the idea behind the movie, I felt it was just strangely adapted. It's one of those types of movies you can't explain without giving too much away but I'll give it a try.

It's the Christmas holiday season and Miles (Danny Glover), the train conductor, is about to take the ride of his life. Joining him in the rear cabin are Chloe (Leelee Sobieski), a pre-med student buried in her books and Pete (Steve Zahn), a traveling salesman reaping the rewards of his tiny alcohol bottle collection. Mrs. Froy (Richard O'Brien), takes the middle cabin accompanied by her prize Pomeranian pooch, while Hiro (Takatsuna Mukai) and Yamashita (Togo Igawa) spend their time playing a traditional ancient game. But when Walter (Harry Anichkin), embarks on their journey, their lives are changed forever.

You see, Walter boards the train without saying a word or paying for a ticket. He goes to the rear of the train and sits with Chloe and Pete. Though he never utters a word, he does take an offering of alcohol from Pete and washes a hand full of pills down with it. Moments later, Miles comes to collect the fare, and Walter is found dead. His reaction is to call the police until the three find a magical package, Walter was transporting on the train. Removing the lid to uncover the contents, a wooden box with a small outlet for viewing it's contents, is exposed and they are all overjoyed on what it holds within. But already counting their chickens, they agree to get rid of the Walter's body to split this new found fortune. When Walter' body won't fit in a large trunk, Chloe puts her pre-med skills into action, hacking the body into smaller pieces. At preciously the right time, on the overpass of a bridge, the three push the trunk overboard sending their haunting package to the river below.

Mr. Gutman (Constantine Gregory), boards the train at the next stop, looking to make his connection with Walter, and everyone scrambles for excuses of never seeing him. But when Walter's body parts have are discovered thrown off the train by the ice fisherman below, a detective (Geoff Bell), gets involved to bring justice to these greedy criminals. As more bodies start to appear, all will find a they pay a huge admission price to unlocking their box of dreams.

A-Mark Entertainment, Night Train Films
Director: Brian King
Producers: Christopher Eberts, Brian R. Etting
Writer: Brian King
I viewed 5/09

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