Tony Scott Retrospect – Unstoppable (2010) – Encore Review


“[to Will] I only got one rule. One rule only: you’re gonna do something, you do it right. You don’t know how to do it, you ask me, all right? Likewise, if you need anything from me, you’d better speak up. ‘Cause, uh, you’re the conductor. Once we get our freight, it’s your train. I’m just the guy driving it. ” – Frank

Number of Times Seen – 3 (23 Jan 2011, 30 Jan 2018 and 22 Jun 2020)

Link to original reviewHere

Brief Synopsis – After a train mishap that causes a unmanned speeding train to go out of control, two train workers must devise a plan to stop the runaway train before it causes damage in populated areas.

My Take on it – I’m going to be a guest at the end of the month on a podcast that will be reviewing the body of work of Director Tony Scott, so I plan to watch and review over the next 8 days, 8 of his most popular films in order of their release dates.

This is #8!

This is a film that has a great premise that works so much better than one might actually think it could.

The story is action packed and as the title suggests, it really is unstoppable because the tension and suspense lasts throughout the entire film.

Denzel Washington and Chris Pine are both great in these roles because they are quite different from the kind of roles we would expect from them.

Both have played heroes in certain situations and in this film, they play subtle characters that are heroic in their actions, but not because they are meant to be seen as heroes since they are just average men caught in a very unexpected situation.

As good as they both are tho, the main character (and the most interesting one) is obviously the train which adds so much suspense to the way things play out.

Love the way that this film is told in a seemingly real time fashion which adds so much to the tension of things.

This was Tony Scott’s final film as director before his death and he adds a great cap to his storied directorial career as a director of action-thriller.

The editing and direction of this film helps make it so enjoyable to watch and it works quite well.

Bottom Line – Great idea that works much better than one might think. Washington and Pine are quite good here but the star of this film is the tension created b this runaway train. The action is non stop here and in certain scenes, the tension is quite thick.  The film is told in relative real time and that also helps add to the suspense of things along the way. This was Scott’s final film as a director and he is able to cap his resume with another great addition to his action thriller repertoire because the directing and editing of this film is what makes it so enjoyable to watch unfold. Recommended!

MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – A self-confessed acrophobic, Denzel Washington reluctantly performed the stunts where actually he runs along the top of the speeding train. What made the stunt even more hazardous was the fact that the train was empty, thus causing the individual cars to rock more violently. Even though Washington was “wired” as a safety precaution, the leaps from car to car presented a potentially hazardous sequence (interview: Breakfast: Episode dated 26 November 2010 (2010). (From IMDB)

Rating – Globe Worthy (7/10) (no change from original review)

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3 thoughts on “Tony Scott Retrospect – Unstoppable (2010) – Encore Review

  1. No way. As a guy who was a member of a railroad musuem for 40 years and knew how to operate a freight locomotive before he knew how to drive a car, this movie is laughably inaccurate. I can understand it’s entertainment value to the untrained eye, but…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: Temporal Top Ten – 2010 | MovieRob

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