Movie review: The Girl on The Train

Movie reviews, Uncategorized

Hello!

The highly awaited adaptation of the best-selling thriller has finally reached cinemas, so let’s talk about it! This is the review of The Girl on The Train.

IMDb summary: A divorcee becomes entangled in a missing person’s investigation that promises to send shockwaves throughout her life.

The Girl on The Train is an adaptation of the book with the same name, written by journalist-turned-writer Paula Hawkins and published in January of 2015. It has taken Hollywood only around a year and a half to come up with the cinematic version of the same story. The book has been compared to Gone Girl – famous novel by Gillian Flynn (another former journalist, now a published author), but I would also suggest you check out the other two Flynn’s books – Sharp Objects and Dark Places – if you liked The Girl on The Train. J.K.Rowling’s first adult novel – The Casual Vacancy – might also be of some interest to you, as it explores similar topics to The Girl on The Train, namely the idea of the domestic affairs and the concept of the outside image. Another analogous book about a dysfunctional family that is on my to-read list is The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo and all its sequels.

To me, the dichotomy of private and public life was one of the most interesting aspects of the source material. The novel also appealed to my inner stalker – I, as the main character Rachel, like to watch strangers around me and imagine their lives or imagine myself in their place. I guess that tells you something about my less-than-stable mental state. I promise I’m not a drunk, though.

Last year, both Gone Girl and Dark Places have been adapted to films and The Girl with The Dragon Tattoo has been turned into a couple of movies (both in Sweden and the US) and I’m sure that the adaptation of The Girl on The Train will be compared to all of them. Some will even go as far as to compare it to Hitchcock’s classics, which isn’t really fair, in my opinion. But, enough of the introduction, let’s get into the actual review of the picture.

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!SPOILER ALERT!

Writing

The Girl on The Train’s script was written by Erin Cressida Wilson. She penned last year’s Men, Women & Children – the only recent film with Adam Sandler that I didn’t hate – I actually even enjoyed it. As per usual, some of the details of the story were changed when adapting the narrative. To begin with, the action was relocated from London to New York for no obvious  creative reason, other than to appeal more to the American audiences. I would have preferred it to be set in England – the gloomy and rainy London would have fit the story more than the city who never sleeps – NY. The screenwriter also cut a few of the creepier details that were in the book, namely a couple of messed up sex scenes. She also gave more traits to some characters: Rachel liked to draw and we actually saw her go to an AA meeting and Megan liked to go on runs. Cathy’s character was altered a bit too, while the character of Martha was an original creation for the picture. The role that the media played in the murder mystery was also diminished in the film.

Other than that, the characters pretty much stayed the same – they were all damaged people, some for a reason, others – without explanation. Then again, some people just are the way they are and there is no deeper tale behind their personality. Rachel basically was digging a hole for herself throughout the film, Megan was playing with fire and got burnt, and don’t even get me started on Anna – she was so willing to turn a blind eye to everything that she kinda made me sick. The 2 male character got a bit less of development but they were both kinda similar – abusive in one way or the other to some extent. Inspector Riley’s character was actually better in the film than in the book – she was super annoying in the novel and actually quite efficient and clever in the film, though she still went after a wrong person.

The narrative was more compressed in the movie than in the book, but all the main themes stayed the same: the desire to create a family was still the most driving plot point of the story (so stereotypical and one that I cannot understand or agree with, then again, I’ve never been family-orientated and this story only reassured my beliefs) and the private life and the public exterior were juxtaposed. The characters looked at each other for an ideal example and lived in a past way too much. The movie also showed the complexity and the dark side of relationships and love and looked at a very important aspect of the modern life – mental problems and depression.

Directing

Tate Taylor, whose previous films include The Help and Get on Up, directed The Girl on The Train and did a fine job. The camera was a bit static, but the visuals of the train in the background of various shots were nice. All the close-ups also worked to make the movie a bit more intimate experience. And yet, the film was quite slow and the numerous flashbacks didn’t really allow the story to go forward – it seemed like something was holding the movie back. The levels of intensity were also low and the buildup to the big twist was basically non-existent. Nevertheless, I did enjoy the big reveal even if I knew it beforehand. I wish that particular sequence would have been longer, though – the picture wrapped up really quickly when the real killer was announced to the audience and the characters. Overall, the directing was a bit flat and I wish Taylor would have done more with the material.

Music

The movie’s soundtrack by Danny Elfman wasn’t really noticeable (which sometimes is a good thing). I liked the instrumental score but wished they used more actual songs. For one, I really liked the trailer’s song Heartless and that comes from a person who highly dislikes Kanye West.

Acting

  • Emily Blunt (Edge of Tomorrow, Into the WoodsSicarioThe Huntsman) as Rachel Watson was absolutely amazing. She played such a believable drunk person – her performance was never over-the-top or too cartoonish. She basically carried this whole movie by herself and I really wish that her work in this film would be recognized with at least a Golden Globe nomination. Her 2 upcoming film are both animated but I’m sure that we will soon get a few announcements about her being cast in some live-action flicks.
  • Haley Bennett (Hardcore Henry) as Megan Hipwell was also really good. She reminded me a bit of both Jennifer Lawrence and Rosamund Pike. Furthermore, Bennett’s acting range is amazing – the character of Megan was completely different from her last cinematic character in The Magnificient Seven. Would love to seem more of her work.
  • Rebecca Ferguson (MI5, Florence Foster Jenkins) as Anna Watson was also great. While reading the book, I really disliked Anna and thought she acted a bit creepy and Ferguson portrayed that well.
  • Justin Theroux as Tom Watson. Theroux played a good villain – that of the worst kind. He seemed to be a good husband and father on the outside, but deep down was a manipulative liar, who managed to believe his own lies, and had no regard for other people’s mental or physical lives. While reading the book, I guessed that he was the killer when I still had around 50 pages left to the big reveal. He just seemed too normal to be a character in the book full of broken people. Going forward, Theroux will be voicing a lord in The Lego Ninjago Movie
  • Luke Evans (The Hobbit trilogy, Dracula Untold, High-Rise) as Scott Hipwell was fine in the role. I kinda feel like he was used as an eye candy for the first half of the film, though. He only said his first line in the 45th minute of the film (I checked). Nonetheless, his few emotional scenes with Blunt were my favorite parts of the movie. His next film is the live-action remake of Beauty and the Beast, which I’m super excited about!
  • Allison Janney as Detective Sgt. Riley was really good. Janney’s performance made me like the character of Riley much more than I did in the book. Coincidentally, I only just saw another film with her – she had a small role in Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children.
  • Édgar Ramírez (Joy, Point Break) as Dr. Kamal Abdic was fine. He was clearly not Bosnian (that was a big deal in the book) but they still tried to mention his ethnicity in the film which didn’t work. In the book, he was the survivor/refugee of the Yugoslavian wars and this impacted the media’s perception of him as the supposed killer. In the film, they just had Rachel throw the line ‘Where are you from?’ as a possible nod to his background in the book, but that didn’t really work.

In short, The Girl on The Train was an okay movie. The strongest part of it was the acting, while the directing and the writing had to take the back seat. It is not a must watch, but the fans of the book, as well as those who like character/actor-driven films, should check it out.

Rate: 3.5/5

Trailer: The Girl on The Train trailer

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Running marathon: PINK RUN 2014 Kaunas

Sports

Hi!

Last Sunday, I have participated in the last running marathon this year – PINK RUN 2014. As you have probably already noticed from the photos and the name of the run, all of the participants had to wear something pink: t-shirt, wig or any other pink accessory (there was even a special station where you could get you beard or hair colored with pink spray paint). We did that not because all the runners really like the color pink but because this was a charity run for raising awareness and money to fight breast cancer. 

This disease is very near to my heart because my grandma died form cancer 4 years ago, so, I was eager to participate in this run. Moreover, is always a great fun to run through city with a bunch of strangers dressed in pink wigs:).

A few of my friends also ran this short 5 km distance from one part of the city (Medicine university) to the city center (town square in the old town). After the run all of athletes were given some tea and cookies as a thank you for donating the money and for running. My result was okay, I had a hard time breathing while running because the weather was quite cold and windy. What is more, I didn’t really tried to get a good result because this run had other purpose – to come together as a community and do something good for those who need our help.

Bellow you will find a few photos before the start which I have taken myself. You can find more information about the run here. Article from the local newspaper and photos of a professional photographer here.

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Fashion : Autumn #OOTD

Beauty&Fashion

Hello!

Can you believe that it is almost the end of September? I am still living in the summer, but this morning the weather in Lithuania truly showed that it was autumn. So, I decided to share with you one of my outfits for autumn. It simple, comfortable but still stylish. It has edgy, sporty and masculine vibe with a touch of femininity.

Let’s start with the clothes:

Skinny black jeans from a local boutique

Dark purple vest top from NewYorker

Khaki color over-sized shirt – I used to hate khaki color, I had a khaki coat when I was younger and I would fall into a dark mood every time I put it on, but I really love this shirt – found it this weekend at a thrift store – it cost me 1 Euro – absolute bargain. I can wear it loose, tucked into pants or a skirt or even tied into a knot at my waist.

Shoes – classic low top Converse all stars in white.

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Hair – in the first photo my hair are simply put to one side, but after that I put them into ponytail – it goes better with the look.

Accessories : Chunky silver necklace from NewYorker

H&M silver rings in different width. H&M shop does best rings ever.

My bag is really old, it has two smaller straps and one long strap, some metallic studs outlining the shape. Color – dark brown (real leather).

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Nails: I painted my nails with Rimmel London sparkly pink polish to add femininity and some color to this masculine and quite dark outfit. I am not particularly happy with this nail polish, it last only a couple of days. It might be because it is quote old. The color khaki is really neutral , so pink goes perfectly with it.

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So, I hope you liked these short style post. The statement piece of the look is khaki shirt, which I found at the thrift store – you don’t need to spend a lot of money to look great. Most importantly, dress yourself in the way that makes you feel good! Have a great week and don’t let autumn clouds darken your mood!

Swimming marathon: Lampedziai (Kaunas) 2014

Sports

Hi!

On July 6th I and about 100 other swimmers participated in 2nd swimming marathon this summer.

July 6TH is a national celebration in Lithuania (not just an international kissing day) – it’s coronation day of the only king Lithuania ever had. (In 1253 Mindaugas was crowed the king of Lithuania) so the swimming marathon was dedicated to this special date.

The weather was perfect for this kind of event: it was hot and sunny. The wind was quite strong but refreshing. The water was quite cold but the weather made up for it.

I was not training for this marathon so I was surprised that it was quite easy to complete the distance and my time wasn’t bad. All of the swimmers swam 2 km distance and sportsmen with disabilities swam 500m.

This was 13th swimming marathon in that particular location – Lampedžiai lake/man-made pond.

The third swimming marathon this summer will be held in Plateliai at the end of July.

Have a great week!

Photos belong to Arlas Juodeška.

You can’t sit with us!

Uncategorized

Hello Glen Cocos!

I guess that all of you know, that this year we are celebrating the 10th anniversary of the amazing, incredible and unrepeatable movie “Mean Girls” by genius Tina Fey. I have seen it more than 10 times and it is the best chick-flick to see with your friends or a perfect film to watch alone after a long hard week. The movie tackles the issues of wanting to be popular, of thinking that you always have to look perfect. It deals with self-esteem problems that we all have in high school and this is why we can all relate to this movie.

I am so disappointed that Lindsey Lohan’s career went down hill because she was amazing as Cady Heron. And is is also the film that launched Rachel McAdams career (The Notebook was released like a month later). And don’t even get me started on Amanda Seyfried – I love every single movie she does (e.g. Red Riding Hood, Letters to Juliet) and I know all her parts in Les Miserables and Mamma Mia (I always sing along with Cosette and Sophie)

So, in honor of of this important anniversary I am definitely going to watch it again this evening. It you haven’t see this movie which I hardly doubt, you need to watch it ASP.

While you are preparing for a movie night maybe you want to dress up like your favorite character (on Wednesdays we wear PINK): http://www.trendhunter.com/slideshow/mean-girl#2

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or make some dishes appropriate just for mean girls –

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or maybe you are in a mood for scrap-booking – get inspired by Tyler Oakley’s The YouTuber Burn Book Edition –  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O1YNSCRB6Sc

On a serious note, by using this powerful movie, help to spread awareness of the negative impacts of bullying between girls and post Kind Campaign’s photo: You CAN sit with us on your Instagram, Tumblr, Twitter or Facebook. I have already done it. Let’s all help to make our world a better place.10175265_406262082846823_1428706511_n

Have a nice weekend and next time choose a right table 🙂

ImagePhotos : Google Images

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