The Girl on the Train movie review

It was made into a movie
It was made into a movie
It was made into a movie

2017 was supposed to be the year of change. I was supposed to change for the better. There is so much room for improvement in my life and this year was the year I unlocked that room and clawed through the cobweb filled doorspace to the center of the room. Then came the quick realization as to why I never change. I get hives, shortness of breath, get addicted to stupid shows and scratch my scalp furiously. I was reminded of this because this first month I finished reading the girl on the train and watched the movie. I am those people who wait for the movie to come out because reading is too much work. I read and watched. See, CHANGE

Let’s face it, the Girl on the train was supposed to be a Gone girl kind of book/movie but it wasn’t all that. A thriller they say? It did nothing at all for me. There are some few instances of suspense but if you have watched as many TV shows as I have, suspense doesn’t come around often. I had not even put my TV show knowledge hat on but still, nothing. No anticipation, no second guessing, no minor gasps at the back right seat of a matatu, nothing.( That’s where I sit as I take in the creativity leaking towards me from pages of a book I bend down selected at Adams Arcade.)

The movie….the movie…that movie left a lot to be desired. I read the book that is why I felt the flow however aimlessly it was flowing. Emily Blunt is an exemplary actress; an actress who can wear many caps and try she did in this movie. You know sometimes you try so hard but it seems like you are the only one pulling the weight and you all just fail. You remember that group project that you slaved for and still got a C, that is this movie. Laura Prepon, Alisson Janney and Justin Theroux are also in the movie and they have received numerous accolades for their acting but if the writing is not that good, there isn’t much anyone can do about it.

Alison Janney had the opportunity to bring her acting prowess to the movie but her character appeared so much less in the movie than she did the book to make any impact. In the book, I hate her but in the movie I even barely noticed she was there. There was no character development for her as detective Riley and it inevitably made her character seem very under developed.

This is a powerful cast given little to work with
This is a powerful cast given little to work with

They had a whole book to pick parts from and inspiration from and what they picked was the format (somehow). In the book each section is split into the three main characters, Rachael, Ann and Meghan. As they split this they tell us whose story we are reading at that point in time. They tried this with the movie which just seems unnecessary because at the end of the day they interact and we can end up seeing each other’s story without the need for divisions. It worked somewhat well in the book and even went a long way in building the suspense. Having the characters interact in the movies would have given the necessary story flow that would have made a beautiful flow of events and inevitably SUSPENSE!

The location in the book was in Britain and for the movie they changed it to New York. The writers, cast, directors were also from the US. I feel (this is my honest opinion) that the movie would have had better execution were it done in Britain with a British cast for authentic value. I find that British actors have a certain professionalism and creativity that is hard to find anywhere else. Look at Benedict Cumberbatch, Helen Mirren, Emma Thompson, Keira Knightley, Emma Watson, there is lots of them to choose from.

Some scenes just appeared and disappeared without any context for example when she Rachael was holding the baby. If you hadn’t read the book you wouldn’t really understand why Anna was freaking out over Rachael taking Evie and we would have understood this scene easier if we had more of Rachael’s story shown. Anna does not like Rachael much because Anna is married to Rachael’s ex-husband who Rachael calls every chance she gets because she is always drunk. The extent of Anna’s hate towards Rachael isn’t shown in the movie and this is a major plot in the book that ends serving us with a delightful twist at the end. Meghan’s story seems to be the only one the writers made something out of. Rachael’s and Anna’s story were conspicuously shallow in the movie which paved way for a lot of confusion and inevitable dissatisfaction.

Scenes that should have been given prominence were not and scenes that would hike ratings were served every so often. This would have been a great movie had it been written and directed as it should have. Can someone else please rewrite this movie? It needs to be accorded the respect it deserves in as much as it is not gone girl’s level thriller. The mind games need to be seen and felt by the audience.

I could see the potential but the execution was just subpar. What did you think after watching the movie? Was it satisfactory? Please let me know in the comment section below.

What say you?