Runaway Train (1985)

R  |   |  Action, Adventure, Drama  |  6 December 1985 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 19,946 users  
Reviews: 143 user | 48 critic

Two escaped convicts and a female railway worker find themselves trapped on a train with no brakes and nobody driving.


(as Andrei Konchalovsky)


(screenplay), (screenplay), 4 more credits »
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Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 2 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Stacey Pickren ...
Walter Wyatt ...
Reid Cruickshanks ...
Al Turner (as Reid Cruikshanks)
Dan Wray ...
Fat Con
Michael Lee Gogin ...
Short Con
John Bloom ...
Tall Con
Old Con (as Norton E. 'Hank' Warden)


A hardened convict and a younger prisoner escape from a brutal prison in the middle of winter only to find themselves on an out-of-control train with a female railway worker while being pursued by the vengeful head of security. Written by Keith Loh <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The Ride Of Your Death... See more »


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

6 December 1985 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Escape en tren  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$9,000,000 (estimated)


$7,936,012 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


One of a number of American Hollywood movies based on or loosely inspired by a script/film by Japanese director Akira Kurosawa. Others include The Outrage (1964), Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977), Miller's Crossing (1990), Last Man Standing (1996), _The Magnificent Seven_ and Battle Beyond the Stars (1980). See more »


Near the end of the movie, the train is routed onto an unused siding (and in fact crashes through a boarded-up tunnel). But once on the other side, the track ahead of the train is clearly seen to be free of snow as another train has recently passed over it. The amount of snow observed in the previous scenes should have completely covered the tracks. See more »


Sara: Boy, I guess you guys picked the wrong train.
See more »


Referenced in Psych: S.E.I.Z.E. the Day (2014) See more »


Gloria in D Major
by Antonio Vivaldi (as Vivaldi)
Performed by The USSR Academic Russian Chorus and the Moscow Conservatoire Students Orchestra
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Rule #1 for breaking out: Make sure you have a ride
28 February 2000 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Manny and Buck have just broken out of prison and have stowed away on a four-car locomotive in Alaska. Problem is, the engineer died of a heart attack as the train was departing the station and fell off - so now they're all alone on this train, careening through the wilderness over 80 miles per hour, with no way to stop it. Sound like fun to you? It's a rare action movie, one that basically takes place on one location (the train). But it's amazingly suspenseful, too, as railroad officials (who don't know of their stowaways) try to find ways to stop the unstoppable vehicle (shades of "The Taking of Pelham One Two Three"). Jon Voight plays Manny, the experienced jailbreaker, grizzled, ornery, obnoxious, but revered by his fellow prisoners. Eric Roberts plays Buck, the young, cocky, dimwitted tough guy who respects Manny and looks to him as the voice of reason. Also thrown into the mix is Sara (Rebecca De Mornay), a railroad worker who was taking a catnap when the runaway train started its journey. How will these three people stop the train? How, indeed! You know, for a movie taking place on a train, there are plenty of harrowing scenes, and there's hardly a dull or listless moment. Problem is, you don't really know who to root for, and there are spots late in the movie where characters change drastically, a sure casualty of a choppy script. But hey, why quibble? If you're looking for an unusual action movie, here it is!

16 of 23 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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