A woman arriving at a train station is unaware that a nearby stranger is closely eyeing her and her purse as she leaves her carriage. As she waits for her train, the same stranger lurks ... See full summary »
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A woman arriving at a train station is unaware that a nearby stranger is closely eyeing her and her purse as she leaves her carriage. As she waits for her train, the same stranger lurks nearby on the platform, so that he can make sure to sit in the same compartment with her. When the train gets underway and the woman dozes off, the stranger reveals his ill intentions. Written by Snow Leopard

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railway | See All (1) »

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Short | Crime

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Release Date:

10 October 1904 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Resourcefully Builds Up Some Good Suspense
4 February 2005 | by (Ohio) – See all my reviews

The most noticeable thing about this short drama is the way that it resourcefully builds up the suspense and the anticipation of danger in the earlier sequences. The technical side in itself is pretty straightforward, but the scenario is well-conceived, and for the most part the performers carry it off pretty well.

The basic story, with a woman in danger from a strange man on a train, is quite similar to the stories in many other features in the first decade of the 20th century. But this is better from most, due to the way that the movie patiently sets things up in a way that creates suspense, rather than jumping right into tumultuous action.

The early scenes show the woman going about her own affairs, unaware that the man is watching her all the while. The camera shots are composed carefully enough so that you can pick up what is happening if you watch closely, and it allows the audience to sense the danger before the character does - a technique that is now thoroughly familiar in crime and horror movies, but it shows some resourcefulness for a film-maker to have done this deliberately and carefully in 1904.

Most of the rest is straightforward - a couple of times there is a slight shifting of the camera to take in more of the action, but otherwise there are few surprises in the events or in the technique - but the effective use of technique in its earlier scenes is enough to make it stand out for its time.


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