IMDb > The Great Train Robbery (1979)
The First Great Train Robbery
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The Great Train Robbery (1979) More at IMDbPro »The First Great Train Robbery (original title)

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The Great Train Robbery -- (1966) Horst Tappert, Hans Cossy, Gunther Neutze. This is a fascinating rendition of the true life story of the famous British train robbery from 1963. It is told in an almost documentary style from the point of view of the robbers. Offbeat, but very interesting. From 16mm.


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Down 21% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Michael Crichton (screenplay)
Michael Crichton (novel)
View company contact information for The Great Train Robbery on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
2 February 1979 (USA) See more »
Never have so few taken so much from so many.
In Victorian England, a master criminal makes elaborate plans to steal a shipment of gold from a moving train. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Gold | Key | Safe | Train | Bank
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1 win & 1 nomination See more »
User Reviews:
"I wanted the money." See more (49 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Sean Connery ... Pierce

Donald Sutherland ... Agar

Lesley-Anne Down ... Miriam
Alan Webb ... Trent
Malcolm Terris ... Fowler
Robert Lang ... Sharp

Michael Elphick ... Burgess
Wayne Sleep ... Clean Willy

Pamela Salem ... Emily Trent

Gabrielle Lloyd ... Elizabeth Trent
George Downing ... Barlow
James Cossins ... Harranby
John Bett ... McPherson
Peter Benson ... Station Despatcher
Janine Duvitski ... Maggie
Brian de Salvo ... Trent's Butler (as Brian De Salvo)

André Morell ... Judge (as Andre Morell)
Donald Churchill ... Prosecutor

Brian Glover ... Captain Jimmy
Noel Johnson ... Connaught
Peter Butterworth ... Putnam
Patrick Barr ... Burke
Hubert Rees ... Lewis
Agnes Bernelle ... Woman on Platform
Frank McDonald ... P.C. London Bridge Station
Joe Cahill ... Rail Guard
Cecil Nash ... Chaplain
Susan Hallinan ... Emma Barnes
Oliver Smith ... Ratting Assistant
John Altman ... First Pickpocket
Paul Kember ... Second Pickpocket
Geoff Ferris ... Third Pickpocket
Jenny Till ... Woman on Strand
Craig Stokes ... Urchin on Strand
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Brooke Adams ... (uncredited)
Donald Hewlett ... Club Member (uncredited)
Nuala Holloway ... Call Girl (uncredited)
Geoffrey Unsworth ... (uncredited)

Directed by
Michael Crichton 
Writing credits
Michael Crichton (screenplay)

Michael Crichton (novel)

Produced by
John Foreman .... producer
Original Music by
Jerry Goldsmith 
Cinematography by
Geoffrey Unsworth 
Film Editing by
David Bretherton 
Peter Elliott 
Casting by
Mary Selway 
Production Design by
Maurice Carter 
Art Direction by
Bert Davey 
Costume Design by
Anthony Mendleson 
Makeup Department
Elaine Bowerbank .... hair stylist
Basil Newall .... makeup artist
Production Management
Al Burgess .... production manager
Jack Phelan .... unit manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Chris Carreras .... second assistant director
Gerry Gavigan .... second assistant director
Anthony Waye .... assistant director
Dick Ziker .... action director
Art Department
Jim Morahan .... chief draughtsman
Joe Nevin .... property buyer
Ron Quelch .... property buyer
George Richardson .... assistant art director
Hugh Scaife .... set dresser
Vic Simpson .... construction manager
Tom Jung .... poster artist (uncredited)
Tom Jung .... poster designer (uncredited)
Sound Department
Derek Ball .... sound mixer
Chris Barnes .... dubbing editor
Gerry Humphreys .... dubbing mixer (as Gerry Humphries)
Vernon Messenger .... dubbing editor
Terry Poulton .... dubbing editor
Liam Saurin .... sound mixer: Ireland (uncredited)
Special Effects by
Gerry Johnston .... special effects (uncredited)
Ian Wingrove .... special effects (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
John Campbell .... focus puller
Gordon Hayman .... camera operator
Brandon Apps .... clapper loader (uncredited)
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Rebecca Breed .... wardrobe mistress
Richard Pointing .... wardrobe master
Editorial Department
Norma Hazelden .... post-production secretary
Music Department
Michael Clifford .... music editor
Gordon Langford .... orchestrator (uncredited)
Transportation Department
Arthur Dunne .... transportation manager
John King .... unit driver
Other crew
Ron Allday .... production accountant
Patti Calhoun .... secretary to director
Dino De Laurentiis .... presenter
Reg Dent .... horse master
Sue Edwards .... secretary to producer
Don Geraghty .... location manager
Derrick Norwood .... assistant accountant
Loretta Ordewer .... production secretary
Jean Skinner .... continuity
Geoffrey Unsworth .... this film is dedicated to the memory of: his friends miss him
Crew believed to be complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"The First Great Train Robbery" - UK (original title)
See more »
110 min
Black and White (sepia colour) | Color (Technicolor)
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Dolby | Dolby (as Dolby Sound)
Australia:PG | Canada:PG (Manitoba) | Canada:A (Nova Scotia) | Canada:PG (Ontario - 2006) | Canada:AA (Ontario) | Canada:G (Quebec) | Finland:K-12 | Germany:12 (DVD rating) | Ireland:PG | Netherlands:6 | Singapore:PG | South Korea:15 (DVD rating) | Sweden:15 | UK:AA (original rating) (passed with cuts) | UK:15 (video rating) (cut) | UK:12 (video re-rating) (cut) | USA:PG (DVD/Blu-Ray Rating) | USA:PG (certificate #25484) | West Germany:12 (f)

Did You Know?

Michael Crichton based his book and movie only loosely on the actual crime committed in 1855. In real life there were four criminals: Pierce, Agar, the railway guard Burgess, and a railway clerk named Tester. All four keys were kept on railway premises, two in London and two in Folkestone. They were stolen temporarily by Tester and Pierce respectively so that Agar could duplicate them, but it turned out that the Folkestone keys were not being used anyway. The guard's van was not locked from the outside; Pierce and Agar were let in by Burgess, and a share of the loot was handed out to Tester, at stations. None of the criminals was spotted at once; it was months before the railway conceded that the crime must have occurred on the train. The details came to light after Agar had been convicted in an unrelated crime and his accomplices decided to steal his share instead of using it, as he had asked, to provide his mistress an income. She got word to him, and he turned Queen's Evidence against the others, and told all. At no point in the case did anyone escape from custody.See more »
Anachronisms: During the 'raid' on the brothel and in some other scenes, two-tone police whistles are blown. These whistles were not in use by British police forces until the 1870s. Constables in 1855 used a type of football rattle to call for assistance.See more »
[first lines]
Edward Pierce:[narration] In the year 1855, England and France were at war with Russia in the Crimea. The English troops were paid in gold. Once a month, twenty-five thousand pounds in gold was loaded into strongboxes inside the London bank of Huddleston and Bradford and taken by trusted armed guards to the railway station...
See more »
Movie Connections:
Sonata in D major K.448 for two pianos, 3rd movementSee more »


How closely does the movie follow Crichton's novel?
What are the differences between the European DVD versions and the uncut version?
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10 out of 13 people found the following review useful.
"I wanted the money.", 21 October 2007
Author: Daniel Kincaid from Canada

"The Great Train Robbery" is based on a novel by Michael Crichton. It features the efforts of a band of three to rob gold kept in elaborate safes on a train leaving England to support the Crimean War. The film's costumes, elaborate sets and a score from Jerry Goldsmith are impeccable at creating a sense of Victorian England.

Sean Connery is charming as Edward Pierce, who leads the robbers. Donald Sutherland has a memorable role as Robert Agar, a top-rate thief and accomplice to Pierce. Lesley-Anne Down plays Miriam, Pierce's enchanting female companion who has no scruples about using her womanly charms.

The film follows the elaborate and interesting lengths that the gang must go to before they can even board the train. The elements of a great caper film are there: split-second decisions, tension and improvisations when plans go awry. The film also benefits from a lot of well-placed humor. "The Great Train Robbery" proves to remain interesting throughout the build up to and during the robbery.

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Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for The Great Train Robbery (1979)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
That 1855 train JackBluegrass
Arrest Chris398
Superb Lesley-Anne Down's nude scene. dhervas
Connery's stunts rokshok183
Surprised they haven't remade this yet. TheOtherOne79
Why did the acrobat climb the train station wall ? sherlock-37
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