Night Train,” the mystery thriller from writer/director Brian King, seems to have a lot going for it with a promising cast, but the story never quite feels like it leaves the station. Featuring Danny Glover, Steve Zahn, and Leelee Sobieski, “Night Train” follows three passengers on a train who, faced with the ultimate challenge of greed, must decide to work together to hide their secret or turn on one another to keep it all.

From the very start “Night Train” feels like a low budget film and while that doesn’t dictate the value of a movie, its impact on the script was obvious. Choppy dialogue poorly delivered by Glover was matched by Zahn’s awkward portrayal of the drunk, loser salesman which never seemed genuine. Sobieski’s med-school student seemed even more out of place with her inability to pick one personality and stick with it. The rest of the cast seems as consistently flimsy with its high school drama class delivery.

While the cast of “Night Train” was surprisingly disappointing (I usually find Zahn to be a great actor) and the dialogue laughable at times, the core of the story always maintained its potential. The coveted treasure found upon the train offers a unique and enjoyable concept, but ultimately fails to be developed as it is overshadowed by the distracting problems with the film.

Overall, “Night Train” was simple and entertaining in a made-for-TV kind of way. You won’t find stellar performances or delivery here, but you will find an interesting idea that might some day find better execution under a bigger tent for development.

“Night Train” plot

How far would you go to have everything you desire? Christmas Eve… when a veteran conductor (Glover), a young pre-med student (Sobieski) and a struggling salesman (Zahn) discover a dead body onboard a night train, the three strangers find themselves on a collision course with destiny.

Among the deceased man’s possessions is a mysterious box, which fascinates their attention. Upon looking inside, they see a treasure so valuable that the three conspire to hide the body and split the fortune themselves. This decision sets in motion a tense game of obsession and deceit, where greed betrays reason and morality gives way to temptation. With local authorities at every stop and an assortment of suspicious passengers along for the ride, can the three strangers overcome their fixation with the coveted box or will they delve even deeper into the trenches of depravity?

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