Director: Tate Taylor
Cast: Emily Blunt, Rebecca Ferguson, Haley Bennett
Release Date: January 17, 2017
A Review By: Kevin Lovell
Film Rating: 8.5/10
Disc Rating: 8/10
The Girl on the Train is based on Paula Hawkins’ bestselling thriller that shocked the world. Rachel (Emily Blunt), devastated by her recent divorce, spends her daily commute fantasizing about the seemingly perfect couple who live in a house that her train passes every day. Everything changes when she sees something shocking happen there, and becomes entangled in the mystery that unfolds.
Based on the bestselling novel of the same name, ‘The Girl on the Train’ introduces us to three troubled women and the devastating event that will forever affect all three. Divorced and having trouble adapting to a standard life, Rachel (Blunt) spends her days drunkenly traveling the local train and nosily attempting to sneak a look at the various lives she sees along the course of her ride each day. Particularly enthralled (and somewhat envious) of a beautiful young blonde woman and her husband who she sees daily, when she witnesses the woman with another man one day only to discover she went missing promptly thereafter, Rachel can’t help but become involved. As she lies about her relationship with the mysterious woman and invites more trouble by indirectly harassing her ex-husband and his new wife who live on the same street as the woman in the process, she soon finds herself personally involved in a deadly mystery that she is no longer safely viewing from afar.
Directed by Tate Taylor (The Help) from a screenplay by Erin Cressida Wilson (Secretary) which was based on the novel by Paula Hawkins respectively, Taylor does a solid job at the helm of ‘The Girl on the Train’ guiding the film along with a fitting level of tension and emotional power. The film also owes a good share of credit to the talented folks that comprise the cast including Emily Blunt (Sicario), Haley Bennett (The Equalizer), Rebecca Ferguson (Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation), Justin Theroux (TV’s The Leftovers), Luke Evans (Fast & Furious 6), Allison Janney (TV’s Mom), Edgar Ramírez (Joy), Laura Prepon (TV’s That 70’s Show), Lisa Kudrow (TV’s Friends), and a number more, nearly all delivering solid performances in each of their respective roles, particularly Blunt who is simply outstanding in her portrayal of Rachel.
‘The Girl on the Train’ is a tense, emotional and unapologetically human thriller that offers complex and interesting characters, a clever mystery and plenty of tension and steamy moments to keep the blood pressure churning, all forming together into a capable and incredibly enjoyable ride that is well worth taking. Escalating along its course with a looming sense of uneasiness always seeming to linger at the edges, the twists and turns are always careful and clever, and the flashes of imagery and other tenser aspects of the filming method only further assist in allowing the viewer a glimpse at the mental whirlwind the character(s) is tackling onscreen; all the while evolving the unknown into brutal clarity without the storyline ever feeling rushed in the process. Based on the insanely popular bestselling novel by Paula Hawkins, director Tate Taylor does a fantastic job at the helm of this tense film adaption, and his capable guidance is only further complimented by an outstanding performance by Emily Blunt and a talented supporting cast who all have no issue holding their own at every turn. ‘The Girl on the Train’ is a riveting and well done erotic thriller with a solid mystery at its core; I would definitely recommend fans of the book and those who simply appreciate a capable thriller to make a point of giving this one a whirl when you have the opportunity to do so.
Overall, ‘The Girl on the Train’ is a riveting, intense and erotic thriller that revolves around a solid mystery and interweaves the troubled lives of various women with a fitting pace that’s always layered in tension, looming even during the tamest of sequences. Based upon the bestselling novel, the film is capably guided by director Tate Taylor and further boosted by talented performances around the board, ‘The Girl on the Train’ is a powerful, tense, and above all else, truly human mystery that definitely earns my recommendation, particularly for those who appreciate a clever and well done thriller and likely also for fans of the Hawkins’s novel; it’s certainly worthy of a rental for anyone that’s already the slightest bit interested in the film.
The Blu-ray release of ‘The Girl on the Train’ features a full 1080p High Definition presentation utilizing the film’s original 1.85:1 Aspect Ratio. The video presentation looks wonderful as a whole and provides a sharp, detailed and clean presentation throughout with no notable faults to be found within. It holds up admirably even during the numerous darkly lit and/or fast moving sequences and never results in anything occurring on screen ever becoming negatively affected, let alone rendered indiscernible. Overall, this is a pretty fantastic high definition video presentation that should have no trouble pleasing the masses.
The Blu-ray release features a DTS: X (DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1 channel compatible) soundtrack. Please note that this review pertains solely to the 7.1 channel DTS-HD MA presentation. This lossless multichannel soundtrack provides a fairly hard hitting and consistently crisp and clean audio presentation from start to finish. Frequently utilizing all seven available channels in order to send crowd activity, nature elements, bumps and creaks from the travelling train and more throughout the various speakers, while never causing any dialogue which may be occurring simultaneously to become distorted or rendered inaudible. Overall, this is an active and immersive DTS: X (DTS-HD MA 7.1 channel compatible) soundtrack that contributes to the tension and tone of the movie perfectly, it shouldn’t disappoint.
The Blu-ray release of ‘The Girl on the Train’ includes a few worthwhile extras. Included on the release is an ‘Audio Commentary with Director Tate Taylor’, in addition to a collection of ‘Deleted and Alternate Scenes’ from the film (running approximately 18 minutes in length altogether). We are also treated to a couple of behind the scenes Featurettes that include interviews/comments with the cast, crew, and author Paula Hawkins, plus behind the scenes footage and more. The included Featurettes are ‘The Women Behind The Girl’ (running approximately 5 minutes), and ‘On Board The Train’ (approximately 11 minutes).