Davis: Blunt makes impression in movie, The Girl on the Train

Coming to Kelowna, The Girl on the Train a psychological thriller.

Emily Blunt in The Girl on the Train.

Actress Emily Blunt has quickly built a solid career starring in movies like The Devil Wears Prada, The Adjustment Bureau, Salmon Fishing in the Yemen, Edge of Tomorrow, Into the Woods and getting the lead in last year’s acclaimed Sicario.

She gets to take the lead again in The Girl on the Train, in which she plays a divorced and troubled woman who observes a couple from the window of her commuter train. She imagines the couple have a perfect relationship, but when the woman is found murdered, she sets out to solve the mystery while dealing with both her alcohol addiction and the pain of her own failed marriage.

Comparisons are being made to Gone Girl as they are both psychological thrillers based upon best-selling novels, but with Blunt, director Tate Taylor (The Help) and the supporting cast which includes Rebecca Ferguson, Luke Evans, Allison Janney and Lisa Kudrow, it should become a hit on its own strengths.

The Birth of a Nation is the extraordinary true story of Nat Turner, an enslaved man who led a rebellion of slaves in Virginia in 1831. At a young age he was taught to read so he could study the Bible and becomes a religious leader to his fellow slaves. His master takes advantage of this and uses him for profit as well as calm unruly slaves.  However, Turner witnesses countless atrocities and orchestrates an uprising in the hopes of leading his people to freedom.

After receiving the Audience Award and Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival, The Birth of a Nation went on to receive a standing ovation at the Toronto International Film Festival.  Oscar buzz is strong but media attention over writer-producer-director-star Nate Parker’s past (a rape charge for which he was acquitted) could dampen the film’s chances. But with comparisons to 12 Years a Slave and a strong cast which includes Armie Hammer and Gabrielle Union it will likely become one of the most talked about movies come awards season.

Not likely to win any awards (except maybe at the Teen Choice Awards) is Middle School: The Worst Years of my Life. Based upon the acclaimed young adult novels by best-selling author James Patterson (the Alex Cross series, Zoo), it is the story of a teenage boy starting middle school and finding his imagination is not appreciated by his principal and teachers. He therefore enlists his friends to start an uprising against what he feels is oppressive conformity.  Although it will likely not have appeal beyond the teen crowd, the trailer is a little reminiscent of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and the boy’s imagination is shown with the help of some animation.

Fans of Batman, especially those of the campy 1960s TV show, will want to check out the animated movie Batman: Return of the Caped Crusaders on Oct. 10 at the Grand 10. It features the voices of Adam West, Burt Ward and Julie Newmar as Batman, Robin and Catwoman, respectively and shows for one show only at 1 p.m.

Visit Landmark Cinemas for movie times.

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