Name: The Taking Of Pelham 1 2 3
Running Time (minutes): 106
Description: In early afternoon, four armed men hijack a subway train in Manhattan. They stop on a slight incline, decoupling the first car to let the rest of the train coast back. Their leader is Ryder; he connects by phone with Walter Garber, the dispatcher watching that line. Garber is a supervisor temporarily demoted while being investigated for bribery. Ryder demands $10 million within an hour, or he’ll start shooting hostages. He’ll deal only with Garber. The mayor okays the payoff, the news of the hostage situation sends the stock market tumbling, and it’s unclear what Ryder really wants or if Garber is part of the deal. Will hostages, kidnappers, and negotiators live through this?
Stars: Denzel Washington, John Travolta and Luis Guzmán
Genres: Action, Crime, Thriller
The premise is interesting. The actors aren’t. Travolta is cold-blooded and seems to have some religious motivation that isn’t really explained properly, if I recall correctly. And I really dislike Denzel Washington: always that same stoopid accent, always playing the same stoopid cop who isn’t as stoopid as his fellow cops. And then there’s the matter of his wife, who, when he tells her he might be in mortal danger, demands he brings back a bottle of milk from the supermarket. And he can’t just bring any bottle, oh no, she’s very adamant about that. (He just risked his job by paying his daughter’s tuition fees with illegal money, so give him a break.) So, wives, always remember to irritate your husbands with milk bottles when they are in mortal danger. The ending is rushed and stupid/sentimental/wannabe heroic: it clearly implies that nobody really matters in this film except for its plot. The characters are just there out of sheer necessity. The score is functional, but hardly noticeable. But… Will the bottle of milk arrive at Denzel Washington’s house safe and well at the end? Or will the wife have to fetch it herself?