I’m always hesitant when it comes to seeing movies based off of books. I’ve seen it way too many times where the movie is just awful compared to the book. As a book lover, I have some standards when it comes to how the movie should be done. If that’s my fault, then I proudly admit it.
The Girl on the Train is one of those movies. It is based off of the book written by Paula Hawkins, with the same title. The plot jumps back and forth with Rachel telling her story as well as trying to figure out what happened to the missing woman.
Rachel (played by Emily Blunt) is an alcoholic who can’t seem to let go of her worthless ex-husband Tom (played by Justin Theroux). They divorced soon after she caught him cheating on her with his now new wife Anna (played by Rebecca Ferguson). Her alcohol history isn’t anything new, Rachel had blackouts due to the abuse during her marriage to Tom and would only learn what happened after Tom told her. The abuse came into play after Rachel and Tom found out that she couldn’t have children.
Rachel now lives with her friend Cathy (played by Laura Prepron) and spends her now single life riding the train, often stalking Tom and trying to get him back and even approaching Anna and her newborn daughter Evie. During her train rides, Rachel would imagine what Tom’s neighbors, Scott (played by Luke Evans) and Megan (played by Haley Bennett) lives were life and always looked to see what was happening at the house every time she rode by. In her fantasies Rachel believes they have a perfect marriage which is the complete opposite from what she had with Tom when they were married.
“I tell myself I wont look but I look.” – Rachel
Rachel doesn’t know is that the marriage is far from perfect because lets me honest, there is no such thing as perfect. Scott is a controlling man and Megan is unfaithful to him, having affairs repeatedly and one of them is her psychiatrist Dr. Kamal Abdic (played by Edgar Ramirez). Rachel realizes her world has been shattered when on the train she sees Megan kiss Kamal on the train. Rachel has no idea who Kamal is and wonders why Megan would ever cheat on Scott. Rachel does to a bar and goes onto a drinking bringe, promising to make Megan pay for her affair and to make things right in her world. However, Rachel doesn’t remember what happened that night and wakes up back at home in her bed at her apartment with Cathy. Rachel learns soon after that Megan is missing and many believe she is dead and think she has something to do with it, per Detective Riley (played by Allison Janney).
This is the same Detective who has dealt with Rachel throughout several of her drinking binges and knows the pattern she develops. Anna, Tom’s new wife, has attempted to get a restraining order against Rachel after she broke into the house and took Evie outside. Slowly as Rachel tries to figure out what happened that night as well as her own life, she starts to remember things. Rachel has pieces of the night slowly coming back, only after other things remind her of what happened. Rachel is on the path to realizing what happened when Tom’s old boss, Martha (played by Lisa Kudrow) tells her what happened that night at the party and exactly why Tom got fired.
“Tom got fired because he couldn’t keep his dick in his pants.” – Martha
Even though Rachel has no evidence of what happened, she goes to investigate Scott and Kamal. She takes an interest in Scott and even takes sessions with Kamal to figure out what is going on. This leads nowhere except to more trouble, especially when Megan’s body is found in the woods. Rachel realizes that neither of those men are responsible and slowly realizes that Tom is the one who was having an affair with Megan after remembering see Megan getting into the car with Tom. Rachel knows that Tom will do anything to stop the truth from getting out, even if that means hurting his wife and possibly the Evie. Rachel fights to the end to stop Tom and succeeds in killing him, with help from Anna after she attacked her when Rachel confronted him. Together Rachel and Anna tell the police what happened. Rachel starts to get better. A year later she has stopped drinking and has a new job and is happy. To keep herself that way, she still rides the train but sits on the other side.
Overall, I can’t tell you if it’s like the book or not because I haven’t read it. However, to me if this is what happens in the book then it does hit it dead on. I figured out quickly that Tom was the awful person in Rachel’s marriage and was mostly likely having an affair with Megan too. Tom hasn’t exactly proved himself to be the one to not cheat on someone, right? He’s pure scum, no matter what delusions Rachel has developed about him. I give it 7 out of 10 stars.