I’ve been waiting for this one for a pretty long time now. Brad Anderson’s SESSION 9 got me when a friend showed it to me several years ago. Then, a few years after that I saw THE MACHINST and was floored. Even though it almost had ‘that’ ending, it was different enough in transition and stylistically awe inspiring, so it got me. Then about a year ago after reading that Mr. Anderson had a new flick coming out starring (gasp) Ben fucking Kingsley, well, I couldn’t wait.
But wait I did.
Well, the wait is over, Transiberian came out Tuesday and IT IS FUCKING AWESOME. Seriously, best movie of the year in my book. I was so impressed I sat staring at the credits and then the menu screen for quite some time after it ended, wishing I could watch it again but knowing to do so would cheapen its impact.
Ben Kingsley is amazing as a Russian cop, but Mr. Kingsley is always amazing. More of a surprise/relief is what Woody Harrelson does for the film. Since the day I witnessed ol’ Woody’s masterful transformation from the hayseed bartender on Cheers into the cool-as-fuck psycho killer who really just wanted to be on tv in Oliver Stone’s NATURAL BORN KILLERS I’ve always liked him, but recently had just about given up on him after seeing him in things like the unfortunte 15 minutes of semi-pro I sat through a couple months back and then more recently THE GRAND, which should have been soooo good considering the cast (Dennis Farina? I LOVE Dennis Farina. David Crosse? I Love David Crosse) but really wasn’t anything all too great at all, Harrelson included, playing the I’m not-ready-to-grow-up-yet stoner he seems to be so satisfied with playing lately. But here he is and I don’t know if he should get Best Actor for this Brad Anderson and Will Conroy penned masterpiece but he should definitely be nominated.
And then there’s Emily Mortimer as Jessie, one of the best characters I’ve seen in AGES. Really, ages.
Taught, a word I usually think is over-used in ‘thriller’ critique, is the word here. Don’t read the back of the box (it doesn’t really give anything away but I always find I enjoy movies more when I am completely surprised by the course they run (when they’re good that is)) just watch it. This one runs all over the place, and it’s enjoying beyond belief to let it pull you along, believe me.
And according to Mr. Anderson’s website and an article I read somewhere or another I believe he has three movies coming up within the next year or two, one of which, THE RAVEN appears to be centered around the death of Edgar Allen Poe.