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All Aboard - Trains in Movies


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Does "Brief Encounter" qualify where Celia Johnson and Trevor Howard's encounter begins at the train station bar?    There are others in my thoughts as well..."Murder She Said" based on the "4:50 from Paddington", what about the "Ladykillers" where all the crooks fall over the bridge into different trains and the significance of the train steam as a visual. 

 

I also didn't see any mention of "Waterloo Bridge" which I believe trains and train stations had a signifant scene in the movie. What about "Bowani Junction" with Stewart Granger and Ava Gardner?  that whole movie revolves around one of the biggest train stations in Asia and was actually filmed there.

 

Even though there are alot of American movies with trains I actually prefer European trains and movies of the thirties through the fifties as the trains appeared to be much more fun. 

 

English trains used to be alot of fun having ridden in trains in the UK during the late 60's and early 70's I day-dreamed of WWII movies where the RAF smoked and laughed on thier way to and from leave and shared comradery.....I certainly cannot imagine any romantic encounters in airport terminals and on Southwest.

 

If I ever play and then happen to win the lottery I want to take the Siberian Express from Moscow to Vladivostok....exciting yes. 

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Does "Brief Encounter" qualify where Celia Johnson and Trevor Howard's encounter begins at the train station bar?    There are others in my thoughts as well..."Murder She Said" based on the "4:50 from Paddington", what about the "Ladykillers" where all the crooks fall over the bridge into different trains and the significance of the train steam as a visual. 

 

I also didn't see any mention of "Waterloo Bridge" which I believe trains and train stations had a signifant scene in the movie. What about "Bowani Junction" with Stewart Granger and Ava Gardner?  that whole movie revolves around one of the biggest train stations in Asia and was actually filmed there.

 

Even though there are alot of American movies with trains I actually prefer European trains and movies of the thirties through the fifties as the trains appeared to be much more fun. 

 

English trains used to be alot of fun having ridden in trains in the UK during the late 60's and early 70's I day-dreamed of WWII movies where the RAF smoked and laughed on thier way to and from leave and shared comradery.....I certainly cannot imagine any romantic encounters in airport terminals and on Southwest.

 

If I ever play and then happen to win the lottery I want to take the Siberian Express from Moscow to Vladivostok....exciting yes. 

 

I guess Emily here has never heard the expression..."The Mile High Club", eh?!!!

 

(...hey, don't blame ME here, Emily...YOU set this up, ya know!)  ;)

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Since airplanes did not become the primary means of intercity transportation until, like, the '70s, and buses have always been viewed as uncomfortable, inefficient, and unromantic, it is not surprising that trains were so prevalent in classic film.

Actually, the automobile probably became the "primary" means of intercity transportation in the late 50's and early 60's.  Probably still is.  The combination of planes and cars dramatically reduced railroad passenger train useage after WW II.  

Mail contracts kept the passenger trains in business and when the US Post Office moved it to planes and trucks in the early 60's, rail passenger service was doomed as a profit making activity.   Hence, Amtrak in 1971.

Planes became a significant intercity passenger service in the 60's with the introduction of jet engines.  This made larger planes with more seats (mo' money) and with more destinations in shorter flying times possible.

Will agree that trains were more comfortable and more romantic, especially after the introduction of air conditioning and diesel engines.  This was in the late 30's.  Of course, dining cars, lounge cars and sleepers on trains helped.  

Buses are actually more cost-efficient than trains, which is why there are still private bus companies in the US.

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Actually, the automobile probably became the "primary" means of intercity transportation in the late 50's and early 60's.  Probably still is.  The combination of planes and cars dramatically reduced railroad passenger train useage after WW II.  

Mail contracts kept the passenger trains in business and when the US Post Office moved it to planes and trucks in the early 60's, rail passenger service was doomed as a profit making activity.   Hence, Amtrak in 1971.

Planes became a significant intercity passenger service in the 60's with the introduction of jet engines.  This made larger planes with more seats (mo' money) and with more destinations in shorter flying times possible.

Will agree that trains were more comfortable and more romantic, especially after the introduction of air conditioning and diesel engines.  This was in the late 30's.  Of course, dining cars, lounge cars and sleepers on trains helped.  

Buses are actually more cost-efficient than trains, which is why there are still private bus companies in the US.

But you can't interact with strangers in cars. That's why trains present so many more juicy plot possibilities.

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But you can't interact with strangers in cars. That's why trains present so many more juicy plot possibilities.

Not disagreeing, but watch Joy Ride.  Now that is interacting with strangers in cars.  Of course, the CB radio makes it possible and now we have cell phones and smart phones.

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But you can't interact with strangers in cars. That's why trains present so many more juicy plot possibilities.

 

Whaddaya talkin' about here, DGF?! Then how do ya explain the action taking place in Modesto CA in 1962 here, HUH?!...

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JFgTMYEaWlc

 

(...see?!...that's the problem with you east coast boys...ya just can't never think outside the box...or at least outside a '32 Deuce Coupe or '55 Chevy Bel Air anyway, dude!)

 

;)

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Whaddaya talkin' about here, DGF?! Then how do ya explain the action taking place in Modesto CA in 1962 here, HUH?!...

 

 

(...see?!...that's the problem with you east coast boys...ya just can't never think outside the box...or at least outside a '32 Deuce Coupe or '55 Chevy Bel Air anyway, dude!)

 

;)

I'm talking about intercity trips, not cruising down Main Street. Did you ever try to pick up a girl on the 405 Freeway?

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Emily,

 

I'm in total agreement that Brief Encounter and Waterloo Bridge both apply as samples of trains in movies. I feel the same way about Indiscretion of An American Wife starring Jennifer Jones and Montgomery Clift which takes place entirely in the Rome train station. "3:10 To Yuma" and "Last Train From Gun Hill" and "Bad Day At Black Rock" fall into this category as well. As does "Sabrina" with Audrey Hepburn arriving at the L.I. train station and William Holden is totally knocked off his feet by when he sees her and of course offers to drive her to her home "which is just above the garage". I even love the scene in The Bandwagon when Fred Astaire gets off the train and thinks that all the reporters are waiting to greet him but instead Ava Gardner is the one they've been waiting to meet. So many terrific moments.  Love Deanna Durbin in Lady On A Train. Just remembered that movie.

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In director Richard Linklater's "Before Sunrise" (1995), an American traveler named Jesse (Ethan Hawke) meets Céline (Julie Delpy) on a train from Budapest to points west. He impulsively asks the French woman to get off the train in Vienna and spend some time with him before he returns to the United States. The result: Two successful movie sequels -- "Before Sunset" (2004) and "Before Midnight" (2013). 

 

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In the first "Mission: Impossible" feature film (1996), IMF agent Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) tries to prevent a mole (Jon Voight) from escaping from a high-speed train with a briefcase full of money.

 

 

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The 2013 sci-fi film "Snowpiercer" takes place in a bleak future in which the entire world is frozen. The only survivors live on a traveling train in which the haves enjoy life in the front and the have-nots are stuck in the rear. The movie's cast includes Chris Evans, Tilda Swinton, Jamie Bell, Octavia Spencer, Sir John Hurt, and Ed Harris.

 

 

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I'm talking about intercity trips, not cruising down Main Street. Did you ever try to pick up a girl on the 405 Freeway?

 

No, can't say that I ever did.

 

(...BUT, now that you mention it, there WAS a pretty nice lookin' young thing one day sellin' oranges at the end of one of the 405's off-ramps and that sort'a thing DID kind'a cross my mind for a second as I made my turn onto westbound Century Blvd and to my work at LAX...so does THIS count???) 

 

;)

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I don't know if it's been mentioned before -- 143 posts over 8 pages of thread is too much for me to read at one time -- but there's a train scene in 'THE GETAWAY' with Richard Bright thinking he's escaped from the clutches of Steve McQueen.  He hadn't. 

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I don't know if it's been mentioned before -- 143 posts over 8 pages of thread is too much for me to read at one time -- but there's a train scene in 'THE GETAWAY' with Richard Bright thinking he's escaped from the clutches of Steve McQueen.  He hadn't. 

 

Speaking of McQueen, there's a scene early on in THE CINCINNATI KID where Steve is running from a couple of guys out to steal back his poker winnings and which takes place in a rail yard turntable as a big locomotive is being spun around.

 

(...and which unfortunately is yet another anachronistic scene in this otherwise very good film, because as with Ann-Margret's hairstyle being right out of the 1960's in this story supposedly set in the 1930s, the aforementioned train on that turntable is a Diesel-Electric locomotive, and those didn't hit the tracks until the 1950s) 

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Speaking of McQueen, there's a scene early on in THE CINCINNATI KID where Steve is running from a couple of guys out to steal back his poker winnings and which takes place in a rail yard turntable as a big locomotive is being spun around.

 

(...and which unfortunately is yet another anachronistic scene in this otherwise very good film, because as with Ann-Margret's hairstyle being right out of the 1960's in this story supposedly set in the 1930s, the aforementioned train on that turntable is a Diesel-Electric locomotive, and those didn't hit the tracks until the 1950s) 

Actually diesel-electrics were around in the 1930's, though primarily as switch engines. However, the new streamlined passenger trains introduced in 1930's usually used diesel-electic locomotives as well.

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Here's a train film that I remember seeing in the movies -- a hoot! Here's a quote from a review on IMDB:

 

"The first time I saw this, I was in awe. The second time I saw this, I was in disbelief. The third time I saw this, I knew what to expect, but it still remained entertaining. This film is COMPLETELY insane and mind boggling, and it's nice (though strange) that this film seems to have gained newfound recognition since being recently released on DVD. But.. holy crap.. to those who HAVEN'T seen it, you just have no idea what you'll be getting into."  

 

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0087798/reviews

 

204980_full.jpg

 

 

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Actually diesel-electrics were around in the 1930's, though primarily as switch engines. However, the new streamlined passenger trains introduced in 1930's usually used diesel-electic locomotives as well.

 

Thanks for the clarification, Cid.

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No, can't say that I ever did.

 

(...BUT, now that you mention it, there WAS a pretty nice lookin' young thing one day sellin' oranges at the end of one of the 405's off-ramps and that sort'a thing DID kind'a cross my mind for a second as I made my turn onto westbound Century Blvd and to my work at LAX...so does THIS count???) 

 

;)

Not unless you bedded her.

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