Great Train Robbery, The (1979)
Front Cover Actor
Sean Connery Edward Pierce/John Simms/Geoffrey
Donald Sutherland Robert Agar, Screwsman
Lesley-Anne Down Miriam/Madame Lucienne/Miss Brigid Lawson
Alan Webb Edgar Trent, President Huddleston & Bradford Bank
Malcolm Terris Henry Fowler, Manager Huddleston & Bradford Bank
Robert Lang Inspector Sharp
Michael Elphick Burgess, Railway Guard Accomplice
Wayne Sleep William 'Clean Willy' Williams, Snakesman
Pamela Salem Emily Trent
Gabrielle Lloyd Elizabeth Trent
Movie Details
Genre Action; Adventure; Comedy; Crime; Drama
Director Michael Crichton
Producer John Foreman
Writer Michael Crichton
Language English
Audience Rating PG
Running Time 1 hr 50 mins
Country UK
Color Color
Best-selling novelist Michael Crichton had already directed Westworld and Coma when he tackled the ambitious production of The Great Train Robbery in 1978. Adapting his own novel (which was inspired by the facts of the first known train robbery), Crichton sets this attractive, highly enjoyable film in London in 1855, where Edward Pierce (Sean Connery) and Agar (Donald Sutherland) plot to steal £25,000 in gold that is being transported by train to pay British troops in the Crimean War. Lesley-Anne Down plays Miriam, Pierce's sophisticated paramour and the third partner in the scheme; while Pierce and Agar make copies of four keys for the train's closely guarded safes, she uses her feminine wiles to distract a variety of officials and businessmen with connections to the gold.

A lively, humorous caper film of the first order, The Great Train Robbery also boasts a vividly authentic recreation of mid-Victorian England, all the more remarkable since the production was filmed primarily in Ireland on a budget of $6 million--a miraculously modest sum (even in 1978) for such a lavish-looking film. Although Crichton's directorial style seems somewhat detached and bloodless, he maintains a vivid respect for place and time, and his three leads are splendid in their charismatic roles. Meticulous attention to details of costuming and production design enhance the breezy fun of the heist, which climaxes with an exciting sequence on the rushing train, with Connery performing his own stunt work. While the later hit Mission: Impossible would take a similar sequence to its high-tech, high-velocity extreme, The Great Train Robbbery remains an entertaining study of crime in a less hectic age, allowing Crichton to emphasize ingenuity over special effects. --Jeff Shannon

Personal Details
My Rating
Seen It No
Index 1317
Collection Status In Collection
Purchase Date 5/27/04
Store Copy
Owner NF
Links IMDB
Amazon US
Folder 011
Product Details
Format DVD
Region Region 2
Screen Ratio 4:3 Full Frame / 1.85 Anamorphic Wide Screen
UPC 027616714923
Release Date 7/30/02
Subtitles Danish; Dutch; English; English for the hearing impaired; Finnish; French; German; German for the hearing impaired; Italian; Norwegian; Spanish; Swedish
Audio Tracks English Dolby Digital 5.1
French Dolby Digital 1.0
Nr of Disks/Tapes 1
Extra Features
Color Closed-captioned Widescreen Dolby