DIRECTED by David Leitch, the modern master of the action movie, Bullet Train doesn’t disappoint.
It’s full of inventive action, couched in a series of intriguing scenarios thrown up by the setting and the multinational cast of assassins.
Whether it’s samurai swords slicing through train seats, briefcases being used as weapons, explosive handguns, throwing knives or hyperdemic needles, the fights always seem fresh and inventive.
If the choreography doesn’t quite match Leitch’s previous work on John Wick or The Matrix, perhaps that’s too be forgiven – it’s less about realism here, and more about how ridiculous the movie can go.
The film does feel a tad long, although it never truly drags; the abundance of non-stop action sees to that. Oddly enough, the length is felt at the start, where the character introductions, muddled amongst a sea of early action set pieces, feel jumpy and ill-at-ease.
Once the film settles into itself and we’re aware of the pieces at play, as well as the edges of the board, it becomes a much more manageable beast. Indeed, as much as it is long (clocking in at over 2 hours), it never loses your interest.
Brad Pitt is a wonder in the lead role, delivering a performance as the emotionally reformed, fresh out of therapy Ladybug that is charming, hilarious and endearing.
He’s matched by a pair of incredible performances in Taylor-Johnson and Tyree-Henry, who are true joys to watch on screen together in this film.
There are a couple of misfired characters who fail to stick, and only one of the three surprise cameos lands, but for the most part this is a funny, engaging piece that is acted superbly and anchored by a true talent.
Ultimately, Bullet Train is the sort of fun summer action flick that feels fresh, will make you smile, wince and belly laugh in equal measure, and will have you fondly remembering moments for days to come. Is it worth the price of a ticket?