Lex Petros: Unstoppable

Saturday, November 20, 2010


Click on the poster for the official website
Based on true events, this 1 hr 40 mins flick relives the tale of a 28-year train engineer on the brink of retirement, Frank Barnes (Denzel Washington) and newly paired with Will Colson (Chris Pine), a train conduct fresh out of training and trying to win back his wife on an ordinary route hauling cargo in Pennsylvania whose day turns out to be a test of heroism and valor.
Locomotive no. 777 whose engineer fails to implement air brake connections during a routine taxi results in a coaster-turned-runaway train which takes the 39-car load ploughing through the main line to Stanton, a town housing hundreds of thousands in what experts predicted a 25 to 40 mile event radius. The unmanned half-a-mile long behemoth and notching 70-80 mph had in its compliment, cars of toxic chemicals which would certainly wreck havoc of unimaginable proportions.

Colson and Barnes were the town's last hope of avoiding certain catastrophe after a daring attempt involving another locomotive, a helicopter and derailers went awry.

It's no easy task keeping the audience glued in a contained environment but director Tony Scott takes keeps the suspense levels up in this high speed drama. Reminds me of Speed in 1994. Oddly enough, this is probably one of the noticeable films with Denzel Washington out of uniform.

Unstoppable is inspired by the "Crazy Eights" locomotive accident in 2001 during which a train left its Walbridge, Ohio yard and began a 66-mile journey through northwest Ohio with no one at the controls, after the engineer got out of the originally slow-moving train to correctly line a switch, mistakenly believing he had properly set the train's dynamic braking system, just as his counterpart in the movie did.

I'll give this one a 7.0 out of a possible 10.