6.1/10
53,915
237 user 188 critic

The Midnight Meat Train (2008)

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A photographer's obsessive pursuit of dark subject matter leads him into the path of a serial killer who stalks late night commuters, ultimately butchering them in the most gruesome ways imaginable.

Director:

Ryûhei Kitamura

Writers:

Jeff Buhler (screenplay), Clive Barker (short story "The Midnight Meat Train")
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Popularity
3,211 ( 659)
2 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Bradley Cooper ... Leon
Leslie Bibb ... Maya
Brooke Shields ... Susan Hoff
Vinnie Jones ... Mahogany
Roger Bart ... Jurgis
Tony Curran ... Driver
Barbara Eve Harris ... Detective Lynn Hadley
Peter Jacobson ... Otto
Stephanie Mace Stephanie Mace ... Leigh Cooper
Ted Raimi ... Randle Cooper
Nori Satô Nori Satô ... Erika Sakaki (as NorA)
Quinton 'Rampage' Jackson ... Guardian Angel
Dan Callahan ... Troy Taleveski
Donnie Smith ... Station Cop
Earl Carroll Earl Carroll ... Jack Franks
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Storyline

The photographer Leon lives with his girlfriend and waitress Maya waiting for a chance to get in the photo business. When Maya contacts their friend Jurgis, he schedules a meeting for Leon with the successful owner of arts gallery Susan Hoff; she analyzes Leon's work and asks him to improve the quality of his photos. During the night, the upset Leon decides to wander on the streets taking pictures with his camera, and he follows three punks down to the subway station; when the gang attacks a young woman, Leon defends her and the guys move on. On the next morning, Leon discovers that the woman is missing. He goes to the police station, but Detective Lynn Hadley does not give much attention to him and discredits his statement. Leon becomes obsessed to find what happened with the stranger and he watches the subway station. When he sees the elegant butcher Mahogany in the train, Leon believes he might be a murderer and stalks him everywhere, in the beginning of his journey to the darkness. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The most terrifying ride you'll ever take


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sequences of strong bloody gruesome violence, grisly images involving nudity, sexual content and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Lionsgate [United States]

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

7 August 2008 (Russia) See more »

Also Known As:

Clive Barker's Midnight Meat Train See more »

Filming Locations:

Burbank, California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$15,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$34,394, 3 August 2008, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$83,361

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$3,533,227
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (unrated)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Leslie Bibb and Roger Bart both appeared once again in Law Abiding Citizen (2009) See more »

Goofs

Near the end of the film where Maya goes to the subway, she gets through the gate by scanning her card on the wrong part of the barrier. See more »

Quotes

[passing by Mahogany, who is sitting in the train with his bag on his knees]
Guardian Angel: Life is like a box of chocolates!
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Connections

References Forrest Gump (1994) See more »

Soundtracks

Insomnia
Written and Performed by Jimmy Wilsey (as James Calvin Wilsey)
Courtesy of Lakeshore Records
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

MMT is exactly what the title implies - fast and brutal
15 October 2008 | by chaos-rampantSee all my reviews

There's something deeply disturbing about the 'show biz' politics and intrigues that managed to exile such a well made film to the 'dollar theaters'. On the other hand, horror purists of all calibre will probably get a kick out of seeing the visceral shocks and convoluted twists Riuhei Kitamura and Clibe Barker have prepared for our enjoyment in the environment of a seedy, rundown theater. If the disturbed denizens of 42nd Street have all but disappeared, scared away by the gloss and glitz of the cineplex and the popcorn munching crowd that inhabits it, perhaps the final bastion of grindhouse cinema can be found in watching a brutal, bloody shock horror film in an empty theater with row upon row of sticky floor and no one but a handful of genre enthusiasts there with you.

There's also something deeply disturbing about the mentality of the movie-watching public. That a, by the look of it, worse sequel (and I'll be surprised if it's any better than its predecessors) will gross more than MMT, simply because of a household franchise name, a shot of a tape player and someone musing off screen "I want to play a game...", seems to confirm UK grinders Napalm Death motto "the public gets what the public doesn't want".

That's not to say that MMT is an excellent horror flick. No, far from it. But it does exactly what it says on the tin and then some. If the pace slackens a bit after the balls-to-the-wall pummeling that is the first half hour, it is salvaged by Kitamura's (intentional or not) decision to channel the dark, neon-noir of David Fincher.

If the CGI blood is a sign of things to come in the field of mainstream American horror or a leftover from Kitamura's days in Japan, that's for him to know. What Kitamura brings in his cinematic baggage however is his distinct stylistic hallmarks - when the camera repeatedly spins around a train wagon in motion, one will be hard pressed not to recall a similar rotating camera trick from AZUMI. A long overhead crane shot seems to combine the off-kilter axis games of Argento with Tarantino's now-famous crane shot in KILL BILL.

If some people complain that the editing and style appear to be too music video-ish, I will respectfully disagree and point them in the direction of such atrocities as DOOMSDAY and HELL RIDE. Kitamura at least understands rhythm.

The 'novelty' of staging a slasher in a subway train is what gives MMT the first push. The other is the inspired casting choice of having Vinnie "Mean Machine" Jones in the role of the baddie. The third is the distinctly Clive Barker-ish twist that ends the film - not exactly my cup but that's because my sensibilities are totally different from Barker's.

MMT might never quite reach its full potential story-wise, but it's fast-paced and brutal, exactly what the title promises. 7.5/10


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