Talia’s taking of Pelham 123

Written by former McClung’s photo editor Talia Eylon (2006-08) for the McClung’s blog pelham

The Review: The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3

Director: Tony Scott
Screenwriter: Brian Helgeland (screenplay), John Godey (novel)
Actors you might care about: Denzel Washington, John Travolta, Luis Guzman, John Turturro, James Gandolfini
I give it: 3/5 (Average)

The story: In this remake of the 1974 original, Ryder (John Travolta) along with his three henchmen (including Luis Guzman) take a New York City subway train hostage and demand a ransom with a tight deadline. Ryder makes contact with the Metropolitan Transit Authority and forces recently demoted city employee Walter Garber (Denzel Washington) to take the role of negotiator.

My thoughts: Meh. If you need something to do and have money to spare, go see it. Otherwise you can wait until it airs on cable.

Pluses: The acting was good. The cast added depth to thinly written roles.

: Neither the action or the humor were impressive. The plot lacked originality (obviously, it’s a remake) as well as any real suspense. The dialogue and writing were adequate. Cinematography and editing were over done in some areas in an attempt to add drama to  a slow-moving story. The characters, though believable, were hollow; with Washington playing the good, all-American, everyday hero and Travolta playing the supposedly smart, charismatic yet sociopathic villain.

Keep Count:

Number of female characters in a leading role:
Number of female characters in a supporting role
: 0
Total number of female characters with speaking parts: 4

Number of visible minorities in a leading role: 1 (of 2)
Number of visible minorities in a supporting role: 1-2
Total number of visible minorities with a speaking role: 6
Everyone else: White males


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