Thursday, October 13, 2016

C'mon, Ride That Train

The Girl on the Train
Director: Tate Taylor
Cast: Emily Blunt, Rebecca Ferguson, Haley Bennett, Justin Theroux, Luke Evans, Alison Janney, Laura Prepon, Edgar Ramirez, Lisa Kudrow
Released: October 7, 2016
Viewed in theaters: October 12, 2016

I read the book this movie is based on a month ago and I figured out who the person was behind the mystery pretty early on, even before there's a small clue given. I don't want to brag, but whenever I watched an episode of CSI, nine times out of ten, I would always guess the murderer right. It's just this gift I have, you could say! Don't worry, I will give a huge spoiler warning before I get to that part. The book and this movie definitely had a Gone Girl vibe to them, though it didn't quite live up to that one. Both are mysteries and both involve highly unlikeable characters. I am glad I read the book just so I would be prepared to hate all the characters! The book revolves around three female characters who take turns narrating the story. There's the titular Girl on the Train, Rachel Watson (Emily Blunt). She is at the lowest of the low. Her husband left her for a woman he was having an affair with about two years ago, she lost her job due to her excessive drinking, and she passes the house she used to live in while riding the train into Manhattan. All she does all day is drink and sit on benches and look at statues. In the book, she really lets her looks go and gained a bunch of weight since her husband left her. There are scenes in the movie where she looks pretty terrible, but I never got the impression she got as bad as she did in the book, appearance wise. Some male characters pull a Donald Trump and say some pretty nasty things about her looks, but that's not in the movie. She lives with a friend, Cathy, (Laura Prepon) who has let her stay for two years even though Rachel said she would only be there for a couple weeks. In the book, Cathy does kick her out, but that never happens in the movie. She has more of a bigger role in the book.

The woman Rachel's ex-husband, Tom (Justin Theroux) left her for is Anna (Rebecca Ferguson), a beautiful blond. Now in the book, she was a complete conceited bitch. While she still comes over as pretty unlikeable in the movie, I think they made her a little more sympathetic in the movie than she is in the book. Tom and Anna now live in the house with their one year old daughter, Evie. It's the same house that Tom and Rachel used to live in when they were married and Rachel passes by it every day on her commute into the city and it makes her livid to see her ex having a new life with another woman, especially since they have a child and Tom and Rachel wanted to have a baby, but she was never able to conceive and that caused her to start drinking which therefore started their fighting and Tom cheating on her. Rachel's drinking got so bad that she was quite violent and we see flashbacks of her smashing a mirror and threatening to cut her husband with one of the broken pieces. We also see that her husband lost his job because she threw a plate of deviled eggs across the wall at a party his boss was having at his house

The third woman is Megan Hipwell (Haley Bennett). She and her husband, Scott (Luke Evans) moved into the house a few doors down from Rachel's old house after she moved out.  Rachel doesn't know them, but she often sees them on their balcony during her ride trains. She imagines them as this perfect couple and is jealous of what they have. What Rachel doesn't know is that for a short time, Megan was a nanny for Evie. She also doesn't know that Megan and Scott don't have the perfect life she thinks they have because Megan is seeing a therapist (Edgar Ramirez) who she tries to sleep with. (How cliche, I know). One day, Rachel sees Megan kissing a man who is clearly not her husband and is very upset by this since she knows what it's like being cheated on. She gets plastered and goes on a drunken tirade about how she would like to smash Megan's head in for what she did to her husband (and while she does this, her phone is recording it)! When she's riding on the train, she decides to get off on the stop where Megan lives and when she sees Megan (or thinks she sees Megan), she goes after her, ready to confront her. She is very disoriented and confused and stumbles and something (or someone) clocks her. She wakes up the next day on her bed (not quite sure how she got home because they never tell us!), bloodied and dirty. She has no idea what's happened.

Megan has gone missing and the police (the main one is played by Alison Janney; the male officer in the book had a much bigger role in the book) come to question Rachel about Megan's disappearance. They think Rachel may have something to do with it since they know she's often harassing her ex and his new wife. They think since Anna and Rachel both bare a similar resemblance and are around the same age, Rachel may have attacked Megan, thinking she was Anna. Rachel denies this, but they tell her that Tom and Anna saw her. That's when Rachel tells them about the man Megan had been kissing which makes her sound insane since she told them she didn't know Megan and had never met her before, but yet she saw her with another man. Because of her excessive drinking problem, they don't take any of her claims seriously and Megan decides to pay Scott a visit and tell him about his wife's infidelity. She tells him that she was a friend of Megan's, that she knew her from the art gallery she worked at. 

Okay, just to be on the safe side, I'm going to issue my spoiler warning now. If you've read the book, but haven't seen the movie, feel free to read ahead because nothing major is changed. But for those of you who haven't read the book/seen the movie, then be warned that THERE ARE SPOILERS AFTER THIS POINT!!!

After Rachel tells him about the other man, it takes five seconds for Scott to pull up a picture of Megan's therapist from his website and Rachel confirms it was him she saw. The whole thing seemed a little too easy. The movie glosses over the part where he's questioned and is let go from suspicion. They are now looking at the husband, but Rachel knows Scott couldn't have done it. That is, until Scott finds out that she was lying about knowing Megan and becomes suspicion of her and assaults her. It's actually way worse in the book what he does to her. Rachel goes to the police station to report him and tell them that Scott is obviously the murderer, (did I tell you they find Megan's body in the woods? So she's dead...for real) but Janney tells her that they know she's been getting cozy with Scott and they know she often visits him and that they know Scott didn't do it because they have surveillance of him at a sports bar the night Megan disappeared.

I knew they were trying to trick me and everyone else with thinking it was Megan's husband or her therapist, but I knew all along that it was Rachel's ex-husband, the man she was still in love with. You never go with the obvious and Megan's husband and therapist were just that. It would have been a really great twist if Anna was the maybe she found out she was now the Rachel in this situation and Tom was cheating on her with Megan, who was now the new Anna (which she does find out he was having an affair with the nanny....this book/movie is so full of cliches, I tell you!) and killed Megan. But no, it was Tom who was the killer. He killed her because he was having an affair with her and when Megan confronted him and told him she was pregnant, he told her to get rid of it, but she said no, and he said he didn't want another kid and pushes her and she falls and hits her head on a large rock. Since she's already down, he just decides to finish the job. In the book, she thinks about just not telling him and going on her way, which is sad because she could have lived and just started a new life.

After learning that Scott couldn't have been the killer, Rachel runs into the wife of Tom's ex boss (Lisa Kudrow) and she apologizes to her about her behavior that day at the party a couple years ago. The boss's wife is confused and tells her she didn't make a scene and she only took a nap. This is when Rachel realizes that Tom has been lying to her all these times and she suddenly gets her memory back and remembers everything she thought she did that was wrong and horrible (like the threatening to attack Tom with a broken piece of glass) was actually Tom acting that way. She also remembers that night Megan disappeared and while she thought she saw Anna get in a car with Tom, it was actually Megan. I guess I shouldn't be so proud of myself that I guessed who the murderer was early on, as it seems pretty obvious now!

Another reason not to like Anna is that after learning that her husband had an affair and quite possible killed the woman, she was going to stay with him! WTF, lady? She does come to her senses after Tom attacks Rachel and she fights back by thrusting a corkscrew in his neck. Anna makes sure to finish the job by twisting the corkscrew into his neck.

Remember that video I mentioned of Rachel ranting about how she wanted to kill Megan for cheating on her husband. It never comes back in play! And this wasn't even in the book, so I'm not sure why they had it in the movie, especially when they didn't use it. Weird. Also, am I right about how unlikeable all the characters are? This movie is no Gone Girl, but it's an enjoyable thriller to see on a weekday afternoon...which is when I saw it! 

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