Midnight Meat Train (2008)

Posted: September 24, 2012 in Movie Review
Tags: , , , , ,

Midnight Meat Train

Directed By: Ryuhei Kitamura

Starring: Bradley Cooper, Leslie Bibb, Vinnie Jones, Brooke Shields, Ted Raimi, Roger Bart

Subgenre: Thriller, Supernatural

Synopsis: A photographer trying to capture the essence of New York at night begins following a butcher that rides the subway at night with unforeseen consequences.

Thoughts: I am in no way a Clive Barker expert: in fact I know very little about the man other than he has given us a couple of very good, if not great, horror movies. Midnight Meat Train is based on one of Barker’s short stories featured in Volume One of Books of Blood, a piece of work I really need to check out.  The story delivers plenty of tension and more than enough red stuff to keep the gore hounds happy, although there is a fair amount of CGI used throughout, including one scene that damn near ruined the movie for me.

On top of a damn good story are a couple of great characters.  Bradley Cooper as Leon the photographer and Vinnie Jones as Mahogany really carry the movie.  Jones often plays the heavy, but that is because he does it so well.  His presence is menacing and there is no doubt in my mind he could do some damage with that hammer of his.  There are some familiar faces in the rest of the cast with Brooke Shields and Ted Raimi.  It was Raimi’s cameo that left a bad taste in my mouth (not the acting, but the SFX).

It wasn’t until my second viewing of Midnight Meat Train that I realized that it was directed by none other than Ryuhei Kitamura.  He directed Versus, a personal favorite of mine and an absolutely crazy zombie flick that you must check out if you haven’t.  I really like the visuals in Midnight Meat Train, even if I thought the CGI was heavy handed at times.  The movie felt gritty without being over the top.  Kitamura handled a rather twisted ending with style and really delivered on his first foray into Hollywood. I can’t wait to see what else this guy directs.

Midnight Meat Train doesn’t measure up to some of the other classic based on Barker’s canon like Hellraiser, Candyman or Nightbreed, but it is a pretty damn good movie.  If this one passed you by, check it out.

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Comments
  1. This movie doesn’t get half the credit it deserves. A lot of that is thanks to the immensely talented Bradley Cooper. Points for mentioning Versus. Yes, everyone who hasn’t seen that movie must do so ASAP. I had no idea it was the same director!

  2. shnsjolin says:

    I was pretty shocked when I saw the Director as well. Truth be told, I wasn’t a fan of this the first time around, but I decided to revisit it and enjoyed it much more the second time around.

  3. Doug Roos says:

    The only thing disappointing about this was the CGI like you said. It makes some of the kills look like cartoons. Such a shame. Back when Kitamura made Versus, he complained about CGI, and now even he has fallen victim to it (he also had a little bit of crap CGI in Azumi, which was a great film otherwise).

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