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All Aboard - Trains in Movies


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You don't see a train in Norman Jewison's Oscar-winning drama "In the Heat of the Night" (1967) until the movie's been under way for a while. But you definitely hear one when Sparta Police Chief Gillespie (Rod Steiger) interrogates Virgil Tibbs (Sidney Poitier), and it's one of my favorite moments in the film.

 

 

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One of the first film directors to utilize a train for thrills was, of course, Hitchcock.

 

The-39-Steps-train-escape1_zpsot6j66bv.j

 

Here's a shot of Robert Donat trying to escape the police by clinging to the outside of a train car (we don't have doors on the outside of individual cars now they way they did then in Britain, thank God).

 

And, yes, that light you see down the track is the sight of an approaching train.

 

The first of the truly great Hitchcock thrillers, THE 39 STEPS. Technically dated today, true, but still a fun ride.

And that scene  features the historically famous Firth of Forth Bridge in Scotland. Just like Hitch would later use the Statue of Liberty or Mount Rushmore.

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You don't see a train in Norman Jewison's Oscar-winning drama "In the Heat of the Night" (1967) until the movie's been under way for a while. But you definitely hear one when Sparta Police Chief Gillespie (Rod Steiger) interrogates Virgil Tibbs (Sidney Poitier), and it's one of my favorite moments in the film.

 

 

Years ago I was in Sparta, Illinois (were the film was made). The old train station is now a town museum and features displays of the making of the film.

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A lot of good films are mentioned in this thread. Trains can be featured prominently in the story or play small, pivotal  roles like in BAD DAY AT BLACK ROCK or HIGH NOON. My favorite "train" film is also my favorite Burt Lancaster film ,  the WW2 thriller THE TRAIN.  I must also mention that Nick and Nora Charles had some great scenes traveling on a train, especially in THE THIN MAN GOES HOME.

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A lot of good films are mentioned in this thread. Trains can be featured prominently in the story or play small, pivotal  roles like in BAD DAY AT BLACK ROCK or HIGH NOON. My favorite "train" film is also my favorite Burt Lancaster film ,  the WW2 thriller THE TRAIN.  I must also mention that Nick and Nora Charles had some great scenes traveling on a train, especially in THE THIN MAN GOES HOME.

indeed, and who can forget the Ale & Quail Club train sequence in The Palm Beach Story (1942)?

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I'm surprised nobody has yet mentioned the most memorable sequence in that somewhat ponderous movie, HOW THE WEST WAS WON...the train robbery scene here...

 

(...OH, and ND if you're out there...this is the only clip of this I could find on YouTube, and it's in that lame "smilebox" format you seem enamored of for some odd reason, so enjoy dude!) ;)

 

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Somehow, trains are more charismatic and romantic than buses. How many films, other than IT HAPPENED ONE NIGHT and BUS STOP, have great bus scenes?

 

A film maybe a few people have seen;  North by Northwest!

 

Ok,  more of a great bus stop scene.

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Somehow, trains are more charismatic and romantic than buses. How many films, other than IT HAPPENED ONE NIGHT and BUS STOP, have great bus scenes?

Who can forget John Candy's rendition of "The Flintstones" in Planes, Trains and Automobiles (1987) ?

 

Or the ending of Midnight Cowboy (1969) ?

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The Jewel in the Crown (Granada TV series) has a memorable train scene. One of the group -- Ahmed Kasim-- in a specific first-class compartment is a Moslem. A crescent is marked on the outside of the compartment when the train leaves the station.  The trains stops after a while. Hindus pull Ahmed Kasim out of the marked compartment and kill him. The Hindus then turn to the English people in the compartment and say, "Sorry to have disturbed you!"

 

JewelInCrown_4_t700.jpg?f40c0e74b997dbb0

 

 

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A  really good old western  action film with trains as a center piece is DENVER AND RIO GRANDE starring Edmond O Brien and Sterling Hayden . This is one of those Paramount  films that seldom gets aired anywhere, its worth seeking out.

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You don't see a train in Norman Jewison's Oscar-winning drama "In the Heat of the Night" (1967) until the movie's been under way for a while. But you definitely hear one when Sparta Police Chief Gillespie (Rod Steiger) interrogates Virgil Tibbs (Sidney Poitier), and it's one of my favorite moments in the film.

 

 

The Train is in the opening credits sequence

 

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Hmmmmm...yeah..."buses" now, eh?!

 

Well, I guess seein' as how we've sidetracked this baby to "buses in movies", I suppose a little further sidetracking to "buses on old television shows" probably isn't that out of line now, eh?!

 

And so, with this in mind, how many of you remember the 1st season-ending episode of "The Fugitive", and when JUST as you think Doc Kimble is about to catch the elusive one-armed man at that bus terminal and as they make eye-contact, the bus with the real killer on it pulls out of the station and with our put-upon hero running after it but unable to make it stop?

 

(...btw, and speaking of "Richard Kimble" here...has anybody heard lately from our fellow member who uses that character's name as his moniker?)

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