Friday, November 12, 2010
Still soaking in the aftermath of the BP Oil disaster, we are constantly reminded how human errors can often cause far more damages than deliberated terrorist attacks such as "9/11." What is more frustrating and fearful is these cases' unintentional and destructive nature—they can happen anytime without warning. Inspired by a real-life incident in 2001, director Tony Scott's fast paced thriller "Unstoppable" (USA 2010 | 98 min.) skillfully unfolds such a story that starts with an terrible accident and ends with emerged inspiring heroes, without any terrorism involved. And, the excitements in this film are truly unstoppable.
Will (Chris Pine) just starts his job as a young railroad conductor. On his first day on the train, he and his partner, experienced train operator Frank (Denzel Washington), learn that an unmanned, half-mile-long freight train is flying to them head-on at full speed. They must act quickly to divert a catastrophic disaster to happen. However, avoiding a head-on collision is just the beginning of the increasingly intensive and suspensive ride.
Even the events develop quickly, the film is extremely clear, engaging, and effective. Even you have zero knowledge about train operations, the film keeps you on the edge of your seat at all time. Both Denzel Washington and Chris Pine fully commend their characters and make them believable and human.
What is lacking is when the camera is not aiming at the fast moving train. A train dispatcher Connie (Rosario Dawson) acts like a superwoman; not only she has the time to quarrel with an incompetent and arrogant corporate executive during the urgent situation, she is also able to magically appear at the train in the end. However, it is hard to deny that the communication with the executive is entertaining—in this economy, everybody would like to take a shot at them when given a chance.