The Phantom Express (1932)

  |  Mystery, Thriller

The Phantom Express (1932) Poster

A railway is threatened by mysterious wrecks, which turn out to be caused by criminals using a unique deception.


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26 October 2015 | Michael_Elliott
A Decent Idea But Not Much Execution
The Phantom Express (1932)

** (out of 4)

A train is heading down the tracks at night when the driver notices another train coming straight towards them. He derails the train to avoid the crash but during an investigation it's discovered that there wasn't another train. Soon we learn that several trains have been forced off the track due to a "ghost train" so the playboy son of the train owner decides to investigate.

THE PHANTOM EXPRESS starts off rather good as we're given the initial crash and then a small court room setting where we hear about the accident and the aftermath investigation. The idea of a ghost train is pretty interesting for a story but sadly the film pretty much falls apart from there and turns into a rather cheap "B" movie that doesn't know what to do with its subject.

For the most part the film remains slightly entertaining because of those opening scenes but one really wishes that the screenwriter had done more with it. To be fair, I'm sure the writer would have wanted to do more but obviously they were working on a small budget and I'm sure very little time. The performances in the film are about average. The film does contain some nice cinematography and the train wreck scenes aren't nearly as bad as you might expect.

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