[This is a re-post of my The Railway Man review from the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival. The Railway Man opens today in limited release.]
War is an undeniable certainty. For as long as there is civilization, there will be war. With conflict comes tragedy, but it does not end when the war concludes; the effects a human being are long lasting and not easily forgotten. We’ve see countless aspects of war explored onscreen in various films, some focusing on the battles at hand, some zeroing in on the psychological experience, and some chronicling the lasting effects years after the actual conflict. The Railway Man tries to have it both ways by telling two stories: one of atrocities during World War II and one of the after effects on man’s psyche nearly half a decade later. By splitting its focus in two, though, the film fails to wholly capture either story, resulting in a disappointing feature all together. Hit the jump for my full review.