An obsessive photographer begins stalking a dangerous man
he believes may be killing people on the evening subway train.
The Midnight Meat Train (2008)
Directed by Ryûhei Kitamura
Written by Jeff Buhler
Starring Bradley Cooper, Vinnie Jones, Leslie Bibb,
Brooke Shields, Roger Bart, Tony Curran, Barbara Eve Harris
Based on the short story by Clive Barker
The Midnight Meat Train is a surprisingly decent horror film with a first half that feels like a gory Hitchcock film and a second half that turns everything nonsensical. It's a shame because for the most part, this film is creepy, unnerving, and reminiscent of old school 60's slasher films. It's only with the final reveal that things go topsy turvy and just about ruin the entire thing. You'd think the man who gave us Candyman and Hellraiser wouldn't end such a creepy story with (SPOILERS) reptilian monsters that are never once mentioned or alluded to, but are suddenly super important.
This film was Bradley Cooper's first major starring role, and he definitely shows his potential as a leading man. However, it's Vinnie Jones who steals the show as the mute but imposing serial killer Mahogany. Without uttering a single word, Jones commands every scene he's in with a presence that is unmatched. He's a terrifying villain to say the least. The Midnight Meat Train builds its difficult-to-sell premise up bit by bit, revealing only as much as the audience needs to know. It just breaks my heart that the last twenty minutes do their best to tear apart everything that came before it. This one really could've been something great.
This story needed a different ending, one that does justice to the unsettling horror film that came before it. By the end of it, there are so many questions that will never get answered. What were those creatures? What were the things coming out of Mahogany's chest? Why must there always be a butcher? It's almost like they were preparing for a sequel they knew they weren't going to get. Regardless, this film is mostly decent, but ultimately falls flat in the end.