I saw The Taking of Pelham 1-2-3 on Friday.
I’ll be honest, I was hoping to talk some folks into going to see The Hangover again, but also, I wanted to get out with some folks I don’t normally get to hang out with. But, those folks were more interested in Pelham 1-2-3, so that was what we saw.
The premise of the movie is simple, a criminal, played by John Travolta, takes over a New York City subway train and holds it for ransom. Ten million dollars worth of ransom, in fact. He leads a team of three other guys, two gunmen and a former MTA motorman to drive the kidnapped train.
The MTA controller at the main headquarters who deals with the kidnappers or terrorists is played by Denzell Washington. He’s got a little secret in his recent past. Travolta’s character takes a perverse liking to him and insists that he be the one who brings the money down into the subway system when the time finally comes. Honestly, sitting here trying to describe the movie, it sounds a little boring, but it was surprisingly good. Travolta plays an apparently unstable and randomly dangerous violent criminal who seems to be out for a little revenge against the city that he feels “done him wrong”. Naturally, there is more to him than meets the eye.
So, in spite of the Scientology connection, with Travolta, it was a pretty good movie. Except for one thing where my suspension of disbelief got totally blown. So, they hook up some kind of wifi relay in the subway tunnel, right? No mention of what or how they tapped into some other line or other outside access, it just magically worked. Then, a computer on the train finds and attaches itself to the network without any intervention. You know, that would be nice and all, but, uh, that’s kind of what I do all day. Connect networks and computers and stuff. And, uh, they pay me pretty good money because, you know, it just doesn’t work that way.
Also, there was a kind of weak sub-plot that was all about manipulating the markets with a terrorist scare. And, of course, Travolta was guilty of a little over acting, but, then, that’s normal for him. Other than that, though, it was a pretty good movie.
Honestly, I still would have rather seen The Hangover a second time, but The Taking of Pelham 1-2-3 was a pretty good movie and definitely worth seeing if you like simple action films.