My wife had zero interest in seeing this movie. ¬†When I told her what it was about she literally said, "What's it about? ¬†A runaway train? ¬†Like in modern times? ¬†How many people are onboard, like 4? ¬†Boring!" ¬†Needless to say, she didn't go with me to see it and I brought my friend, Dan, along instead; someone who can appreciate a simplistic action movie like me. ¬†My wife was pretty wrong about it being boring though...although she was right about the people onboard...that number is actually zero. ¬†Unstoppable is directed by film veteran Tony Scott, who you probably don't know but I guarantee you know his resume. ¬†He's one of the godfathers of the modern day action movie. ¬†If it's simple, over budget and made only so you can chomp down on gobs of popcorn as a nervous reaction to the suspense, then Tony Scott is your man. ¬†He's given us over the years such films as Top Gun, Enemy of the State, Taking of Pelham 123 and the cult classic True Romance to name a few. ¬†He teams up again with his muse, Denzel Washington and new to the Scott family is Chris Pine (Star Trek, Bottleshock). ¬†Both are great and likable as the unlikely heroes that are archetypes of your typical action movie. ¬†One is young, one is old. ¬†One is a rookie, the other is a veteran. ¬†They don't like each other but they make a great team. ¬†One has a family problem he doesn't want to talk about, the other helps him with it. ¬†It's a formula that no one likes to deviate from too much because we all like it and it sells lots of tickets. ¬†It's also easy to write those characters into the "true story" that is Unstoppable. ¬†Don't get too excited because it's not "based on a true story" it's "inspired" by one. ¬†What it's actually based on was an unmanned train carrying toxic chemicals traveled 47 miles in 2001 in Ohio. ¬†But it wasn't a high action adventure and the train never went faster than 45 mph. ¬†The train in the movie though zips along at 80 mph, it's carrying explosive stuff on it and it's headed straight toward a series of populated towns in Central and Western Pennsylvania (close to where I grew up). ¬†Adding to the cast of characters is Rosario Dawson (Seven Pounds, Rent, Grindhouse) as the helpful command center worker and Kevin Dunn (Transformers, Lost) as the evil corporate CEO. ¬†Tony Scott movies are really hit or miss with me. ¬†He has a style that is very obvious with his pointless zoom-ins, mega quick editing and seizure-inducing handheld shots. ¬†But for Unstoppable it works pretty well. ¬†Once you get past the first fifteen minutes of the movie the rest of the action is...well...unstoppable. ¬†It doesn't get boring for a split second, even though when you think about what you saw afterward, it really isn't a whole lot of anything happening. ¬†It's an action movie with 90% planning and 10% action but gives you the impression that it's 100% action. ¬†Not an easy thing to do as a director. ¬†Never once have I looked forward to seeing a Tony Scott movie, but rarely am I upset that I had to sit through one. ¬†Unstoppable doesn't break that streak, but it is one of his best I've seen in a while. ¬†However, spoiler alert, the title is false advertising.
Unstoppable ¬†(Rated PG-13)
Gavin Grade: B