The Taking of Pelham 123 (2009)

A New York City subway dispatcher draws on his extensive knowledge of the subway system in order to outsmart a dangerous criminal mastermind who’s hijacked a subway train in this remake of the 1974 thriller inspired by John Godey’s best-selling book.


I must admit that I have not seen the original or read the book which may well have been an advantage from some of the comments I have seen. The plot is somewhat difficult to understand not because it’s too complex but because you know that as a ransom and getaway plot its right out there in cloud cuckoo land, there are so many easier and less suicidal methods. If we put that aside than this film isn’t all that bad, it’s entertaining enough, the characters are well defined and its pace is just right. Unfortunately it just isn’t all there either. There’s something intangible missing. 

John Travolta plays a familiar angry at the system character that he is clearly comfortable with or type cast into as does Denzel Washington, no sparkling performances though. The bad guys all get their comeuppance and the city is saved as you would expect so no plot surprises either. 

All in all and ok film if you don’t have anything better to watch on the telly.

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