Film Review: The Railway Man

The Railway Man

Drama The Railway Man is a well executed true story which boasts great performances from its cast.

Eric Lomax was one of many of Allied prisoners of war forced to work on the construction of the Thai/Burma railway during World War II. Years later, Eric’s experiences still haunt him…

Based on a true story, director Jonathan Teplitzky’s The Railway Man is highly effective at conveying the trauma of war and its after effects, even decades later. Teplitzky’s depiction of more emotional moments has enough restraint to never appear melodramatic.

The narrative of The Railway Man is an amble rather than a swift jaunt. here is a lull in the middle, but the film recovers from this. The Railway Man is a bit of a slow burner, but still suitably engaging.

It is a few key scenes in The Railway Man which offer drama and tension. Without these scenes, the film would not have worked. The flashbacks, as well as the film’s climax, are engrossing.

What is most thought provoking in The Railway Man is its final act. The film’s conclusion generates a tension which makes it compelling. Given the emotions at play, it is easy to imagine the film having a different outcome. However, The Railway Man ends on a reflective note, which is satisfying.

Cinematography in The Railway Man is great. There is some superb composition from cinematographer Garry Phillips. Sound design in the film is also particularly effective.

Colin Firth offers a solid performance as the older Eric Lomax. Hiroyuki Sanada is also great as Nagase. It is Jeremy Irvine however who is most convincing in his role as the younger Lomax. Nicole Kidman fails to emote successfully thanks to her lack of expression.

The Railway Man presents an important story, balancing historical representation with a very human angle.

Stuff To Look At

A profusion of film-related goodness, including clips from Runner Runner and The Counsellor, trailers for Saving Mr Banks and The Monuments Men, and Loki…

Runner Runner

New Batman Ben Affleck shows a dark side in the above clip from upcoming crime thriller Runner Runner. This is why crocodiles are a bad idea generally. Runner Runner hits UK screens on 27th September 2013.


Nebraska is director Alexander Payne’s latest. Starring Bruce Dern and Will Forte, Nebraska is a father and son road movie. The film is being screened at the BFI London Film Festival in October and is on general release from 6th December 2013.

The Railway Man

Here is the trailer for period drama The Railway Man. Starring Colin Firth and Nicole Kidman, the film is based on Eric Lomax’s memoirs. The Railway Man is released in the UK on 3rd January 2013.

We Are What We Are

We Are What We Are is a remake of the 2010 Mexican film of the same name. It has one of those settings that feel disconcerting. We Are What We Are is out in cinemas on 25th October 2013.

The Monuments Men

The Monuments Men reunites George Clooney and Matt Damon as members of a World War II platoon tasked with rescuing masterpieces from Nazi thieves. The film also stars Bill Murray and Cate Blanchett. The Monuments Men is due for release on 9th January 2014.

Thor The Dark World

Thor The Dark World Loki

Loki! Let’s just be honest; he is the real reason everyone wants to see Thor The Dark World. That look on Loki’s face – so determined. Sequel Thor The Dark World is released in UK cinemas on 30th October 2013.

The Counsellor

The hair in the above clip is something else. In fact, Javier Bardem’s whole look is something else. With an all-star cast including Michael Fassbender, Cameron Diaz and Brad Pitt, The Counsellor hits UK screens on 15th November 2013.

Ender’s Game

Ender’s Game is based on the best-selling novel of the same name. Starring Harrison Ford and Ben Kingsley, the film is set in a dystopian future. Ender’s Game is released on 25th October 2013 and there’s a trip to NASA to be won here.

Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues

The sequel everyone has been waiting for! Above is San Diego’s finest newsman Ron Burgundy delivering the news on the Goodwood revival. Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues hits UK screens on 20th December 2013. What a Christmas treat.

Saving Mr Banks

Here is the first trailer for Saving Mr Banks. The film tells the story of how Walt Disney brought Mary Poppins to the big screen. Saving Mr Banks is closing the London Film Festival on 20th October 2013 and is out on general release on 29th November 2013.


Nothing is going to match the perfection of the director’s cut of 1987’s  RoboCop. Nothing. However this new version features Michael Keaton, so it gets plus points for this alone. RoboCop is due for release on 7th February 2014.

Mandela Long Walk To Freedom

Idris Elba and Naomie Harris star in biopic Mandela Long Walk To Freedom. The film is released on 3rd January 2013; ripe for awards season. Let’s see how it fares.