Directed: Tate Taylor
Written: Erin Cressida Wilson. Based on The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
Released: October 2016
Starring: Emily Blunt, Rebecca Ferguson, Justin Theroux, Haley Bennett, Luke Evans, Allison Janney (Juno’s mum!), Édgar Ramírez and Lisa Kudrow.
The Girl on the Train is up there with Gone Girl! A mind-twisting psychological thriller, through the eyes of Rachel (Emily Blunt) – a frail alcoholic who is the last person to see Megan Hipwell (Haley Bennett) alive.
However, as we see the events unfold from Rachel’s point of view, you never know what is real and what has been imagined, as she struggles to remember what she saw .
Is she the murderer? Was it the ginger dude on the train? Was it Megan’s husband? You honestly wouldn’t know for sure – massive twists!
We experience the battle against herself as she grows stronger and more focussed on trying to remember what she saw that night when Megan went missing.
I have read the book, and if I had of seen the movie immediately after I think I would have agreed with the public’s negative reaction of it being too different to the novel. As instead of it being set in the dingy outer suburbs of London, it is set in glamourous waterside mansions of New York.
Apparently the movie was always going to be set somewhere in the USA, because alcoholism is ‘less accepted there‘, and the juxtaposition of the character’s sadness with the glorious mansions she passed on the train made it visually shocking… I still don’t think it was necessary to change the country’s setting, but whatever. At least Emily Blunt was allowed to remain English.
I enjoyed it very much, though. The characters are believable and relatable (my two big ticks for every movie). Emily Blunt makes an amazing drunk person – that must have taken a lot of practice to look that authentic. It’s actually scary and makes you think twice about drinking.
I’m pleased they didn’t make her look flawless while she was drunk. I was worried they would make her look too ‘pretty’, but her cheeks are puffy and red, her eye make-up is smudged and her hair is messy – you wouldn’t know she’s a celebrity.
But if I had to be nit-picky, the male characters all looked far too similar. I guess this was to encourage you to see through the hazy eyes of a drunkard who couldn’t identify anyone. But with the film being visually dark, everyone having short, dark hair could get confusing if you didn’t know the storyline.
Or maybe it’s just our crappy TV that makes the contrast too deep.
Nevertheless, if you haven’t read the book you’ll likely enjoy it more, because you wouldn’t be able to notice the differences from the novel. But you may find it a bit slow-paced and long-winded at times.
Jodie’s rating: 8/10
PS. On more than one occasion, I have been told that if I didn’t have crooked teeth, chubby cheeks or many of my current facial features, that I would look JUST like Emily! 🤪🤪 *so proud*.