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on May 30, 2009
This movie explores what happens, when a few people taking the, NIGHT TRAIN, discover that a passenger is dead. Initially, it was handled rather matter-of-factly. He had apparently taken some pills with alcohol. It was likely an overdose. But just who was this man---and why was he guarding his possessions so closely, and with such paranoia, when he boarded the train?

Sharing his car were only two other passengers: a young pre-med student (Leelee Sobieski) and a salesman (Steven Zahn). The veteran train conductor (Danny Glover) visits the car, shortly after the salesman notes the passenger deceased. While going through the man's possessions they discover a mysterious box. It can't be opened, but one can peer inside through some carvings in the box. The salesman takes an innocent peek, that will change all of their lives. He becomes almost hypnotically entranced. Each, in turn, follows suit. They all fall under the spell, and each tries to make the possession their own. It becomes a cat and mouse game, of the highest degree. And, why won't that darn box open?

This movie could easily have been on the Sci-Fi Channel, as a modern day version of, 'The Twilight Zone.' The theme was so similar to some of those, where the protagonist's values and moral compass, were put to the test by supernatural forces. And, how quickly, one could find his ethics in a state of total decay. The suggestion always seemed to be, that evil could be unleashed in almost, any man, in the right circumstances, and, with the right temptations. The NIGHT TRAIN is no exception, as it explores these human dynamics and the effects of primal greed.

While I recommend this film for those that enjoy the type of stories told in the old, 'Twilight Zone' series, be warned that the acting is 'B' movie grade. Leelee Sobieski delivers the best performance, showing the most unexpected character change, followed by Steve Zahn. Danny Glover was just, well, Danny Glover. He wasn't challenged enough by this role to stray from his customary style and affect. Secondary characters were minimally developed. They simply drove the story along, or presented obstacles. You will also need to suspend some disbelief. Like why were there so few passengers on this train---and why were they spread so far apart? In some instances, there was only one passenger per train car. It was an unlikely scenario to set the stage.

I watched the Blu-ray version and found the audio/video experience to be quite good. There is also almost an hour's worth of Bonus Features, following this 91 minute film. It is rated 'R', for violent content and some language, so it's not for youngsters.

I can't recommend that you run out and purchase this one, without renting it, first. I picked it up as a rental after reading the synopsis. It hooked me! I had to take the mystery to closure, to learn more about that crazy box, but I think one viewing is enough for me. Did the box ever open? I'm not tellin'. I recommend you grab some popcorn, and hop on board the blood-train to find out. 'ALL A-B-O-A-R-D!'
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on November 29, 2009
This film is a perfect example of how to make a very effective and suspenseful film with a low budget. One location, few actors and great script. The interaction between the different characters is great. Danny Glover is perfect as the aging train conductor who sees the chance to get a break in life. Only thing that disturbed me was the bad CGI.
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on September 4, 2009
I bought this film based on the premise and the fact that I was familiar with the 3 lead actors. As the credits rolled, I noticed another familiar name, far down the list - Richard O'Brien. Since he was the creator and star of one of my favorite films of all time, I thought it would be kind of intriguing to see what he looked like after all these years. Since his glory days as Riff-Raff in his classic "Rocky Horror Picture Show", he has made cameos in a bunch of movies, including "Elvira's Haunted Hills", but not much recently. As the film rolled on, I got so caught up in the plot that I realized I had not seen anyone that could possibly be him, except... NAH! Couldn't be! But as the movie neared the end, I figured I just HAD to be right. I agree fully with the comparisons to classic episodes of "The Twilight Zone", and I didn't mind the cheesy sets. It added to the atmosphere of the film. I could envision seeing this on SYFY on Saturday night (they just need to bleep out a couple of F-words), and it is a cut above their usual fare. And, yes, I was right about Mr. O'Brien. If you still don't recognize him, check out the "making of" featurette, where he appears as himself. Overall, this movie was much more entertaining than I expected given that it went direct to video. And if someone drops dead nearby with a box in their hand, don't look inside!
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on June 25, 2015
Think Maltese Falcon on a train. One of my favorite things was the train itself, loved the décor and the flow of it. A man gets on a train as is someone is chasing him, he has a small wooden box of some kind, he passes away and the conductor Danny Glover takes the box and instructs the other 2 in the car, Steve Zahn and Leelee Sobieski not to touch it. They do and he does and they all see something different in the box. What follows is something along the lines of Clue meets Maltese Falcon, no comedy but murder and mayhem galore. There are other passengers on the train...who wants it and what will they do for it? I was definitely entertained and had some fun. A few predictable items but the one real question never gets answered.
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on August 30, 2009
This movie is a bit Rod Serling-like. Definitely a good Twilight Zone tale here. "Submitted for your approval, one unique, mysterious, and seemingly impregnable box in the possession of a dead man, that beckons all who gaze into it with a siren song of riches untold..." The greed runs wild as the train rolls down the tracks in a blizzard. This one held my interest throughout. Well acted, IMHO -- and besides, Leelee Sobieski is such a beauty I can watch her in anything. A really fun, unique little film.
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on August 22, 2014
This was a descent movie about human behavior, greed versus character. How far are you willing to go to achieve riches. What I didn't like about this film is that it never explains how these characters all came together. There were one or two other minor points that didn't add up well. But the actors all portrayed their parts very well. They made me feel what they felt, which is the primary role of a movie. Danny Glover usual makes me glad that I saw a film and Leelee Sobieski does a good job also. This is a film that the family can watch together, no nudity, no foul language and the violence is not graphic in nature. A nice way to spend a quiet afternoon.
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on February 13, 2013
When a veteran conductor ( danny glover ) a young pre-med student ( leelee sobieski ) a streggling salesman ( steve zahn ) discovera dead body onboard a night train the three strangers find themselves on a collision course with destiny. among the dceased mans possessions is a mysterious box containing a treasure so valuable that they conspire to keep it for themselves. their decision sets in motion a tenes game of obsession and deceit where betrays reason and morality gives way to temptation.
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on July 2, 2014
Big fan of Leelee Sobieski and this movie did not disappoint in that area. Not in love with most of the other actors in this movie and that is the reason for the three stars. As far as the plot, I think this movie suffered from not being sure if it wanted to be a comedy, a drama or whatever. Take this same premise, make it a serious drama, and this would be great. If you like Leelee, you will like this movie.
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on February 1, 2014
A mysterious man comes on the night train and promptly dies. He is carrying a sealed box filled with valuables that becomes known to two of the passengers and the conductor (Danny Glover). The movie turns into "Throw Papa from the Train" then the threesome suddenly have some trust issues which become complicated as more people get involved.

For a limited space and people the film managed to develop a good story that takes turns and twists as Chloe (Leelee Sobieski) emerges from a quiet student into a killer. I liked her in this role.

F-bomb. No nudity. Leelee Sobieski in bra.
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on December 21, 2015
A man with a mysterious (pandoras) box boards the train and the inhabitants conspire to take it for themselves.. Very suspenseful and highly entertaining watching the characters slowly change once they peek inside the box.
Another train thriller/horror I recommend is "Midnight Meat Train" starring Bradley Cooper!
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