THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN

girl on the trainAlternate title: THE POSTMAN NEVER RINGS TWICE For THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO Whose BODY HEAT Attracts STRANGERS ON A TRAIN. This noir wannabe is an indie thriller that I had hoped would be a giddy surprise (the movie showed up out of nowhere; there was one other person in the theater) along the lines of John Dahl’s RED ROCK WEST and THE LAST SEDUCTION. Instead, it’s pretentiously talky and un-memorably acted with a plot whose two big “twists” are hardly surprises. The movie purports to be a clever mind game about truth vs fiction, fantasy vs reality, idealized love vs warts-and-all romance — wrapped up in twin storylines, one an extended monologue about the Holocaust as recorded by a documentary filmmaker, the other about the filmmaker’s hard fall for a femme fatale, which leads to murder. But it comes off as t-v crime drama, with the wordiness of a novel. Stephen Lang (the mean Colonel in AVATAR) and David Margulies juice up their scenes a bit, but the two leads are blanks. Leave this TRAIN at the station. — Jeff Schultz

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