Film Review: The Girl on the Train


In association with The Grosvenor

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The Girl on the Train, always reminding you never to listen to the trailers you watch.

Tate Taylor’s two-hour feature encompasses the struggles of alcoholic Rachel (Emily Blunt) in remembering her actions during drunken escapades in New York. All whilst attempting to deal with her emotions surrounding her divorce with ex-husband Tom (Justin Theroux) and his new relationship with Anna (Rebecca Ferguson). To avoid these feelings, Rachel spends her time watching a perfect couple from the train, Megan (Hayley Bennett) and Scott (Luke Evans), whom she believes to be the embodiment of true love. However, when Megan disappears Rachel quickly becomes a suspect.

Labelled as the “thriller of the year” within trailers, this description seemed however to contradict recent reviews in which The Girl on the Train has been rated as rather underwhelming. After leaving the screening this seemed to be the case, as despite feeling very Gone Girl-esque, the film just failed to deliver thriller-wise. Following a conversation amongst friends and readers of the novel it was based upon, it became clear Taylor and screenwriter Erin Cressida Wilson had simply created a poor adaptation.

An important factor which came to impact the overall feeling of the film is the quick notification of Rachel’s alcoholism, something which could have instead been revealed at the very end. This happens in the book and if the case were true for the film, Taylor may have achieved in keeping the thrilling atmosphere audiences were expecting. However, this just isn’t the case, as the first hour and twenty minutes were spent waiting for the thrilling scenes, which happened to be kept within the last half hour. Never listen to the trailers.

Despite this let down, Emily Blunt’s performance is worth noting. Although the script and editing made for the least thrilling film of the year, her performance should be viewed as a diligent attempt to bring the film to life. Watching Blunt’s performance within Rachel’s drunken escapades were the only moments which truly captured a sense of what Taylor was attempting to encompass within the entire film. Blunt definitely surpassed expectations, with most of my rating for this film coming from her performance.

[Courtney Hughes – @iliveonwifi]

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