The final train scene

The climax of the movie occurs on the outside of the train. This is a fantastic use of CGI and real footage. In this scene, Jim is trying to escape to a helicopter piloted by Krieger. It has some exciting footage of the helicopter attached to the train and the action continues into the tunnel. It is hard to believe that in reality, the helicopter would have been able to fly like that in a tunnel, but it makes for some great drama.

The final shot of this scene is of the train conductor, brilliantly played by David Schneider, looking up after the train stops and then he faints. The look on his face says it all.  There are some reviews I’ve read saying that this was the worst piece of the movie.   However, David’s look worked for me.

Trains are used a lot in movies as they are a confined space with no easy escape (maybe except for Silver Streak). A few films keep the action inside the train.   For instance, in James Bond’s From Russia With Love, there is a tremendous fight scene between Bond and Red Grant.   That scene happens inside the train.   Skyfall has a nice exterior fight scene. The Wolverine has something somewhat similar (ok there is no helicopter) using a bullet train with Wolverine on top of the train in a fight with Yakuza. From what we’ve been able to find, the 1926 Buster Keaton film The General and 1929 movie The Flying Scotsman were the first movies to show action with a person on the outside of a moving train.


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