Download Narrow Margin

Narrow Margin

It will take you to the edge of suspense.
Narrow Margin
A Los Angeles District Attorney (Gene Hackman) is attempting to take an unwilling murder witness (Anne Archer) back to the United States from Canada to testify against a top-level mob boss. Frantically attempting to escape two deadly hit men sent to silence her, they board a Vancouver-bound train only to find the killers are on board with them. For the next 20 hours, as the train hurls through the beautiful but isolated Canadian wilderness, a deadly game of cat and mouse ensues in which their ability to tell friend from foe is a matter of life and death.


John Chard
Narrow Margins and Wide Loads. Director and writer Peter Hyams took the bold decision to reimage one of the best film noir crime pictures of the 1950s, and all things considered it’s not half bad. Without getting close to the greatness of Richard Fleischer’s 1952 claustrophobic suspenser that is. Having Gene Hackman and Anne Archer heading up your two principal characters is a good foundation. As the district attorney employee and witness to a mob killing respectively, both actors come up trumps for their director as they are thrust into a game of cat and mouse aboard a speeding train. As the Canadian wilderness outside the train’s windows soothes the eyes, the cramped interiors make for good suspense as Hackman plays the calm to Archer’s panic. There’s nothing new here in terms of thriller conventions, and the pitfalls and familiarity of the plot’s ideas keep it from hitting better heights: people still do dumb things – important details are all too quickly swept aside – laws of gravity non existent and etc. But refreshingly Hyams resists the chance to insert a cloying romance, while his staging of suspense scenes are very well handled. But of course he’s got Hackman being as cool as a cucumber. 6.5/10

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