If you’ve read the book “The Girl on the Train” (is there anyone left who hasn’t read the book?), then you’re familiar with the premise:
Alcoholic Rachel Watson obsesses with the lives of her ex-husband, his new family and his “picture-perfect” neighbors who live a few houses down mostly from the train window during her daily commute. When Rachel witnesses the neighbor having an affair just before disappearing, she not only gets involved in solving the crime, she’s suspected of being involved in the crime.
The book is a deep, deep dive into the characters’ messed up lives and twisted psyche. Readers are privy to the characters’ darkest thoughts and detailed backstories which gives the story a lot of depth.
For those who were fans of the book and looking forward to the movie release, I’ve got bad news. That kind of storytelling is just not something Hollywood can come anywhere near pulling off in just two hours. I missed the intimate details about the characters that provided context to the twists and turns to the story. The movie also didn’t allow much time for the suspense to build and the mystery unpacked itself very quickly at the end. The movie went from dark, depressing and a bit haunting to almost campy at the very end.
The acting was solid (yay for strong female lead roles) and it was beautifully shot, but the cast and director weren’t enough to save the script. Just like “Gone Girl” this screenplay doesn’t do the book justice. If you loved the book, skip this movie and spend your time with another book instead.
The Girl on the Train opens Friday, Oct. 7 and runs 1 hour and 52 minutes.