A Runaway Classic: Runaway Train (1985)

December 6, 2016 | By

RunawayTrain_posterNewly posted is a review of Runaway Train (1985), one of the best films produced by schlockmeisters Menachem Goland and Yoram Globus for Cannon Films, and released on Blu via Twilight Time.

31 years since its release, this Oscar Nominated classic still manages to grip viewers because of its skillful execution.

I never managed to catch the film in theatres, but like many, saw the film on home video countless times, and yet whenever I sit down to watch Andrei Konchalovsky’s taut drama, I become so invested in the characters that I forget the twists and turns.

It’s also a movie capped with one of the most striking finales ever filmed, a depiction of beautiful madness and sublime revenge that’s part operatic, part poetry, but wholly gut-wrenching.

Konchalovsky made three straight dramas for Cannon, but Runaway Train undoubtedly showed a knack for action montages, attracting Warner Bros. to hire him for their goofball, buddy film action comedy Tango & Cash (1989), an underrated masterpiece of explosive nonsense, fast quips, and incessant kabooms.

The director soon receded from such overt Hollywood extravaganzas, but Runaway Train represents a rare gem during Cannon’s golden period, which also resulted in That Championship Season (1982) and Barfly (1987), each deserving special edition treatment on Blu in North America.

From the KQEK.com archives I’ve ported over a review of La-La Land’s packed soundtrack CD which features both LP and film versions of the score.

Coming next: Twilight Time’s other train-centric drama, Robert Aldrich’s mean, brutal, and oddly funny Emperor of the North (1973).




Mark R. Hasan, Editor

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