Opening on November 12 is director Tony Scott’s (True Romance, Top Gun, Man on Fire) new movie Unstoppable. Starring Chris Pine and Denzel Washington as a train conductor and engineer, the two have to race the clock to stop an unmanned runaway train – effectively a missile the size of a skyscraper – and prevent disaster in a heavily populated area.
I saw a screening the other day and am happy to report Tony Scott has relaxed a bit behind the camera. Instead of the crazy camera work that distracts you from the story (Deja Vu, Domino, The Taking of Pelham 123) , it’s like he took a valium before filming. Of course there are still moments that make you remember you’re watching a Tony Scott film, but it’s far less intrusive. Also, even though he might have relaxed a bit, he still knows how to frame action. All the action with the train was very well done, and I was definitely on edge watching Pine and Washington try to stop a moving missile. Hit the jump for the full synopsis, 5 clips from the film, and a bunch of new images.
Inspired by actual events, UNSTOPPABLE is an adrenaline rush fueled by director Tony Scott’s signature mark of propulsive action rooted in the reality of ordinary people placed in extraordinary circumstances. A veteran train engineer (Denzel Washington) and a young conductor (Chris Pine) race the clock to stop an unmanned runaway train – effectively a missile the size of a skyscraper — and prevent disaster in a heavily populated area.
October 12 begins with the usual early morning rush at Fuller Yard in Wilkins, Pennsylvania. The night shift is eager to head home and the members of the morning crew are dragging themselves in, coffee in hand. As two hostlers take a break to wolf down breakfast, they are interrupted and asked to move one of the newest trains on the line to a different track. It seems Fuller Yard is going to host a field trip of elementary school kids headed down from Olean, New York. Annoyed but unfazed, the yard workers begin the task of moving the 777, an absolute beast of a train, when one of them makes the ill-fated decision to take a short cut to get the job done faster. But faster is not always safer and the new locomotive outfitted with the most modern computerized bells and whistles, carrying 39 cars, transforms into a monster coaster in the blink of an eye.
200 miles down the line, at Mingo Yard in Brewster, the day begins with the same routine. Before heading off on their runs, the old guard of railroaders shares a last cup of coffee over paperwork. As they trade war stories of lackluster performances by rookie conductors and brakemen Frank Barnes discovers his conductor is Will Colson, a new political hire. Frank is none too pleased but he keeps his opinion to himself. Once aboard the 1206, a tough older 6-axel engine with lots of miles, Frank is all work, making it plainly obvious to Will that his 28 years of service will trump Will’s four months on the job every time.
Despite the petty aggravations of the day, no one at either yard would ever suspect the afternoon could turn into the terrorizing ordeal it was about to become – one that would test the mettle of two everyday men who become extraordinary heroes.