Midnight Meat Train
This is one of the most recent adaptations of Clive Barkers work and thankfully he was directly involved and avoided another Rawhead Rex crap fest. For the most part the cast is unknown with the exception of the always intimidating Vinnie Jones and the world-devouring eyebrows of Brooke Shields.
It’s nice to find Barkers painting littering the background, it offers a little something extra for fans to keep their eye out for. Leon, a struggling photographer is shattered when a gallery owner explains the shallow and amateur nature of his work. Through his pursuit of shooting the city “as it really is” he finds himself in deadly and terrifying world he doesn’t understand.
Vinnie Jones stars as the mysterious and silent serial killer Mahogany who stalks the last subway of the evening for victims and uses the barren train cars as a mobile butcher shop. Given his stature and unflinching gaze, when he pops eyeballs out with the force of his hammer you believe him capable of it. The photographer becomes obsessed with the pursuit of the killer, his obsession soon turns to madness and an unbreakable bond with Mahogany and the forces the drive the killer.
Though the film falls into some of the cliches and standard traps of any slasher flick, there is so much creativity and beauty in the shots that much can be forgiven. The colour is often muted and drab. The entire environment is filthy, the dirt and grit of the city oozes into every scene. The cold, metallic greys follow the main character from the train, to the meat packing plant and eventually to his flesh.
Gores hounds will be satisfied with the amount of blood Mahogany manages to shed and the violence inflicted on anyone and everyone. Clive Barkers real talent is revealed with the discovery of a mysterious and possible inhuman group pulling the strings and orchestrating the massacres. Barkers work reminds me a lot of H.P. Lovecraft’s in the sense that it’s not what you can see that should scare you but the bigger, unfathomable, indescribable evil that you can’t.
The movie is a highly enjoyable splatterfest and a great start to the highly anticipated “Movies of Blood” that are on their way.