Train (2008)

Written & Directed by: Gideon Raff


Thora Birch .... Alex
Gideon Emery .... Willy
Kavan Reece .... Sheldon
Derek Magyar .... Todd
Gloria Votsis .... Claire
Todd Jensen .... Coach Harris
Vladimir Vladimiriov .... Vlad
Koyna Ruseva .... Dr. Velislava
Valentin Ganev .... Conductor Vasyl
Ivan Barnev .... Gregor
Nikolay Mutafchiev .... Vasily

Release Date: Screamfest Film Festival: October 16, 2008

*Images courtesy at:





A group of student wrestlers are performing a match in Europe as well as taking a train to get around from one place to another. Their coach named Harris (Todd Jensen) is frusterated wondering what train to take next with his students but is approached by a beautiful one named Dr. Velislava (Koyna Ruseva) in which he becomes connected to her and boards a train she suggests but yet while he tries to romance her stabs him in the neck with a needle and tortures him to death.
Suddenly the students end up diseappearing one by one and are stored in a car where others are maming and killing them in which everyone realises that they took the wrong train and everyone on it seems to be participating in these deadly events.


The film in the beginning looks pretty gruesome showing skin being stripped off like someone is dissecting someone alive which is an awful thing to think of all that intense pain and things like that. Then later on it shows college students wrestling in an auditorium which leaves it off to an okay start as well as spending time with their girlfriends riding a passanger train to another destination. Things look pleasant in which that's a nice start before the terrors about to unravel.
There's even nice mysterious moments with some of the students going out to sneak away to a pub in which makes you wonder if the terror happens there as well as them crossing a track and spotting a steam engine in which this moment looked very mysterious but yet nothing scary yet which boggled me as to why such a focus on this locomotive occurred. It did look spooky cause it was at night and steam was drifting from it resting there.

Then it tenses up since there's a fight that's about to happen at a bar between one of the students and a local there in which this was nicely put in seeming to look like a common situation in a rough area with two people not liking one another. Looked exciting to watch for sure.
The suspense seems impressive when the students Coach Harris tries to talk to a conductor of a train named Vasyl before boarding the train and he comes across as strange which seems to make you wonder if he's going to be behind the future terrors about to happen. It really showed off well onto the screen.
While in the train it's interesting hearing the sounds with the train which sounds suspenseful or even one of the girls that is getting sick and suddenly a great jumping moment when she spots a guy standing behind her with a half scarred face which seems pretty spooky.
There's even a moment when Harris seems to have almost a romance with this beautiful foreign woman Dr. Velislava which seems gentle like and then BAM she strikes him with a needle in his neck which is another great jumping moment as well as her dragging him into a room where she tortures him nearly to death along with a hulking figure named Vlad doing these deeds too which is a great character put in here. Watching this is really disturbing.

Which was also a nicely written moment is when these students decide to have fun by playing spin the bottle and a truth and dare game as one of them named Todd is dared to strip down and run through a hallway of passengers to the end of the car in which he does just this wearing nothing but a jock strap as I was finding that this dude is looking like a pansy doing this and quite shocking to see anyone perform like this in front of public. Right away I had a feeling that he was going to be the next victim. While he's in the last car it's dark looking which definetely gives it a good horror feel that someone is watching him and moving in for the kill.
A real suspenseful moment is when one of them named Claire sneaks into a car and discovers that some passports are taken but tries to sneak away after Velislava catches her and then nice brutal moments with what he does to her making you wonder if she's still alive after doing all of this.
Another shocking moment is when another student Sheldon is peeking at some topless women dancing around and two freaky and perverted goons catch him in the act as well as brutally attack him by beating the living crap out of him making you wonder as to when they will stop beating on him. Plus do gross things to him before dragging him away. This was another nice shocking horror moment which worked in well with the rest of the plot.
There's even good graphic torturing and how they slaughter these victims which isn't for people who aren't into horror violence. Plus moments when they drop their victims to other people at a station which also looked disturbing and intense to watch all of this.
Also we spot two of the survivors Alex carrying an injured Willy into the forest and then telling him she has to let him lie down while she goes for help in which you have a feeling that this is too easy and it just is since we have these maniacs beating him up and then Alex hiding spotting this along with Vlad smashing a boulder onto Willy's head as this is hard to watch spotting someone getting killed. It works in well with everything else making this look dark and terrorising.
At times although alot of this looked cleverly done the story seemed to slump a bit but it gets really exciting when Alex seeks revenge against this maniacs on the train when it departs from the station like hanging someone with brutal force as I was thinking "Yes!!! Kill that bastard!!!" Also there's a moment when she pours gasoline into a car and Dr. Velislava tries to talk to her out of it and very decivingly sympathetic which as Alex almost stops doing what she's doing as this is heart pounding wondering if she will fall for this or not. This looks good.
Also nice effects on the car being caught on fire as well as Alex unattached one of the cars as it stops in the middle of a big bridge and things are silent when she thinks that she's killed everyone in which this seems a little too easy and something is bound to happen with at least one maniac about to get their revenge on her. I loved this moment bit by bit and it keeps you watching it all wondering as to what will happen next.
Bottom line is that this film seemed like something that was borrowed from Hostel but took place on a train. It works at times but sometimes it seems to lack a bit. Yet as mentioned the revenge plots looked great and can please anyone who likes really twisted shocking type horror movies. It was well made I must say so check it out for yourself.

The acting is pretty good as lead actress Thora Birch (Alex) seems to come across quite well onto the camera with her mysterious features here as well as her cautious attitude. She shows good energy while struggling with many horrifying moments and certainly shows great aggressions on her vengeful attitude like having a terrific menacing attitude yanking some cords around one of the maniac's neck. She does well scrambling to try and escape from one of the maniacs with a great energetic force. Also nice defensive moments on her near a railroad track in which this looked brutally forceful. A very energetic gal this person was and deserves a pat on the back for her effort and hard work with who she portrayed.
Derek Magyar (Todd) seemed to pull off his part quite well showing a great outgoing type of behavior and acting full of life. He never let an ounce of energy down with what he had to do. He had that jock type of appeal to him but yet looked like one of those pansy types at the same time. However he shows great effort on every scene that he performed in so I can't complain. He shows some good energy while running through a hallway of passengers. There's also nice close up shots on him in a dark room with good concerned remarks in which he was impressive reacting nervous to everything. Nice forceful blocking between him and another character in which this looked fairly powerful battling against one another.
Gloria Votsis
(Claire) was quite an attention grabber in which she certainly showed a great intense type of behavior with the terrors as well as showing a great emotional sobbing scared reactions to what is happening to her. She really got into this big time plus had great lung power too whenever she was taken by surprise. A nice moment with her wobbling in a hallway feeling sick along with a nice screaming and fearful reaction after spotting who was behind her in which her reactions looked good and intense. Also a good frightened reaction on her trying to slowly walk away from one of the maniacs. There's also great intense crying while she is being dragged out of the car really getting into what she's doing making her scared attitude very believeable.
Todd Jensen (Coach Harris) definetely came across as extremely strict as well as acting obnoxious making this all look believeable with what he had to deal with by being firm with everyone commanding his orders. He also does well with his aggressions towards everyone taking place at a train station along with getting forceful and demanding. He comes across as a great aggressive coach showing a no bullshit type of behavior. He does a great job hollering in pain while being tortured. I found his supporting role extremely effective and was strong with everything that he did.
Vladimir Vladimiriov (Vlad) came across perfect as creepy, violent and menacing. Although he didn't have any lines he certainly had a great big masculine appeal to him and had the perfect looks like what you'd see in a killer like Leatherface and so fourth. There's a nice menacing moment with him towards the main actress in which he brings up the energy attacking her but yet when he throws punches at her they could've looked a bit more convincing. However, he brings off a great energetic performance and was a perfect horror character without a doubt.
Koyna Ruseva (Dr. Velislava) has a great strong accent and seemed very slick with whatever she did in the film coming across as tempting like showing a great evillness to what she does and really takes the bull by it's horns with this role by getting nasty with her butchering others in which she does well acting vicious while she does all of this. There's a scene where she acts soothing and then does a great lashing out and stabbing someone's neck which looked good and forceful. There's even a good situation when she tries to speak reasonably towards the main actress here showing a nice versatality. I found her to be the best actress in this film and a true character she did with this part.
Valentin Ganev (Conductor Vasyl) was a perfect drawing card to the story in his performance as he certainly was convincing as a mysterious type and comes across as someone who is aggressive too in which he seems very intimidating while doing this making you really want to hate him. He shows a nice fast blocking strike in a scene towards one of his victims as this looked believeably brutal. He reacts well with wide eyed gasping expressions when he is hung by some cords in which this was intensely energised. He comes across perfectly onto the camera and two thumbs up for this guy.

Women are dancing barebreasted in a dance lounge
There's also women dancing bare breasted in a train car
A butt shot is revealed while someone is running through the hallway in a passenger car

Many moments on skin being dissected and cut open
A needle is stabbed in a guy's throat and then having his body being cut up etc.
Someone's chest is stabbed by a pole and later on his eye is stabbed and body is sliced
A hook is stabbed in a girl's neck
A person's body is cut open revealing the insides
A boulder is smashed on a person's head

The music sounded terrific with the pounding effects and boooming as it matches with the train speeding along while the suspense inside it happens. Plus there's great low violin playing which suits the dark moments along with good hissing and scraping sounds too. Also there's great booming sounds for the jumping moments all put together by Michael Wandmacher