Transsiberian

I haven’t been on a train trip in years.  I ventured into the world of riding the Greyhounds, but that’s nothing like the confinement that comes with being on a train.  They can be such a world unto themselves as everyone travels to the same destination, completely trapped and stuck feeling every bump of the tracks.  There’s an old fashioned romance and a just as old fashioned terror that comes along with a train ride and this new film plugs into those two wonderfully.

Starting this November 4th, now available on DVD from First Look Studios comes an international tale of mystery and intrigue in a snowy wasteland.  Transsiberian is ready to roar into your living room and smuggle that sense of claustrophobic paranoia right into your heart.  Bring home this fantastic film today!

Roy, a naïve country boy who loves Jesus and his trains, and Jessie, his beautiful photographer wife with a dark past, have just gotten done with some mission work in Beijing and decide to take the Transsiberian railway to Moscow as a vacation to try and fix their ailing marriage.  They end up sharing a cabin with Carlos and Abby, two young travelers who aren’t exactly what they seem.  When Roy gets left behind at a stop, Jessie discovers that Carlos is dangerous and takes appropriate action.  When Roy catches up with her, they become embroiled in lies and an investigation with Ilya Grinko, an ex-KGB detective.  They end up alone on a train, hurtling towards the middle of snowy nowhere and things are only getting more escalated.  This film stars Woody Harrelson, Emily Mortimer, Kate Mara, Eduardo Noriega, Thomas Kretschmann and Ben Kingsly.

The special features on this film are limited to Dolby Surround Sound, English and Spanish subtitles and previews of other films from this studio.  I was a little disappointed that there were not any featurettes about the trains they filmed on or what it was like to be shooting in those areas of China and Russia.  Even some wonderful commentary from the illustrious and always enjoyable Sir Ben Kingsly would have been completely welcome.

This film is a wonderfully thrilling masterpiece.  The director manages to capture that feeling of isolated claustrophobia so integral to a movie set on a train throughout the whole picture.  The plot is mildly predictable, but it’s the majesty of the film’s setting and the magnificent performances which set the film apart.  Woody Harrelson has that sheltered country boy with a heart of gold act down pat and it shines in this film.  Ben Kingsley is simply a treat at any time, even though he has tended to take roles in less than admirable movies as of late.  Emily Mortimer runs away as the best actor in this film for sure with her compelling and raw treatment of her guilty conscience and desire to hold on to the love she has found.  I recommend this movie without a doubt as it is a theatrical tour de force.

Transsiberian will take you on the ride of your life.

This DVD is available at Amazon.com.

Nathaniel Jonet

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