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The Railway Man (2013)

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A former British Army officer, who was tormented as a prisoner of war at a Japanese labor camp during World War II, discovers that the man responsible for much of his treatment is still alive and sets out to confront him.



(screenplay), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
3,831 ( 117)
7 wins & 19 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Michael MacKenzie ...
Jeffrey Daunton ...
Bryan Probets ...
Major York
Takato Kitamoto ...
Japanese Officer
Keith Fleming ...
Removal Man


Eric Lomax was one of thousands of Allied prisoners of war forced to work on the construction of the Thai/Burma railway during WW2. His experiences, after the secret radio he built to bring news and hope to his colleagues was discovered, left him traumatised and shut off from the world. Years later, he met Patti, a beautiful woman, on a train and fell in love. Patti was determined to rid Eric of his demons. Discovering that the young Japanese officer who haunted her husband was still alive, she faced a terrible decision. Should Eric be given a chance to confront his tormentor? Would she stand by him, whatever he did? Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Revenge is never a straight line.

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for disturbing prisoner of war violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




| |



Release Date:

23 May 2014 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Un pasado imborrable  »

Box Office


$18,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$61,845 (USA) (11 April 2014)


$4,435,083 (USA) (11 July 2014)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Jeremy Irvine was cast as the younger version of Colin Firth's character, after Firth himself suggested him for the role. See more »


The motorcycle and sidecar should have the sidecar on the left, not the right. See more »


[first lines]
Eric: At the beginning of time, the clock struck one. A drop of dew, and the clock struck two. From the dew grew a tree, and the clock struck three. Then the tree made a door, and the clock struck four. Then man came alive, And the clock struck five. Count not, waste not, the hours of the clock. Behold I stand at the door and knock.
See more »


Referenced in Film 2016: Episode dated 17 December 2014 (2014) See more »


Introduction (Prelude) from Gadfly Suite
Performed by Ukraine National Symphony Orchestra, Theodore Kuchar (Conductor)
Composed by Dmitri Shostakovich (as D. Shostakovich)
Published by Native Tongue Publishing
Licensed Courtesy of Select Audio Visual Distribution on behalf of Naxos
See more »

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User Reviews

Good film, with some pacing issues
6 September 2013 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

Had the opportunity to see this at its world premiere in Toronto tonight, where we were joined not only by the stars, but also by Patti Lomax, the wife of the real-life Eric Lomax, on whose autobiography this film was based.

The story is unique and interesting, and is told with a series of flashbacks to Eric Lomax, our protagonist's (Firth), experiences of WW2. As the film is set in fairly dreary locations (prison camps and drab apartments), it's not the most visually exciting thing to watch, and the edit/pacing leaves a bit to be desired - at several points, we find the present-day Eric Lomax (Firth) suddenly transported back to his POW camp in Asia without anything to clue us off as to whether he travelled there (a single plane shot would've done it) or, as in at least one case, is hallucinating.

Still, a good story and well acted by Firth with support from Nicole Kidman as his wife - although the real show-stealers are Jeremy Irvine as young Lomax, and Hiroyuki Sanada as Nagase, the Japanese translator and Lomax's tormentor.

33 of 41 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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To those who criticized Mr. Firth's performance.... sheezcrazy
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Jeremy Irvine as young Eric dianem1999
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