Watch The Taking of Pelham One Two Three
- 1 hr 44 min
"The Taking of Pelham One Two Three" is a gripping crime thriller from 1974 that is directed by Joseph Sargent. It is an intense and suspenseful ride that takes place mostly on a New York City subway train. The film has an all-star cast that includes Walter Matthau, Robert Shaw, and Martin Balsam. It was adapted by Peter Stone from the novel of the same name by John Godey. The story takes place in New York City, where a group of men, led by a character named Mr. Blue (Robert Shaw), hijacks a subway train during rush hour. The train is Pelham 123, hence the title, and it is on the Lexington Avenue line heading southbound towards Brooklyn. The hijackers demand one million dollars in ransom money, and they give the city one hour to deliver it. The city's transit authority, led by Lt. Zachary Garber (Walter Matthau), is the one appointed to handle the situation. Garber is a crusty veteran who has seen it all, but he's never faced a situation like this one. He must navigate the politics of the mayor's office, deal with the press, and coordinate with the police and FBI to try and resolve the situation without anyone getting hurt. The hijackers are a colorful bunch, each with their own personalities and quirks, which keeps the audience on the edge of their seats. They all have code names, which correspond to the colors of the train, hence Mr. Blue (Robert Shaw), Mr. Green (Martin Balsam), Mr. Grey (Hector Elizondo), and Mr. Brown (Earl Hindman). Their leader, Mr. Blue, is cold and calculating, with a British accent that adds to his sinister nature. Meanwhile, Mr. Green is the brains behind the operation, and Mr. Grey is the enforcer, who has no qualms about killing hostages. As the hour ticks by, tensions rise, and Garber tries to negotiate with the hijackers to buy time. Garber's scenes with the hijackers, especially Mr. Blue, are some of the most intense and suspenseful in the movie. Matthau's character shines as the wry protagonist who must outwit the hijackers while also trying to maintain order on the train and in the city. The train scenes are masterfully shot, and the tension is palpable. The audience feels like they are right there on the train with the hostages and the hijackers. The movie uses split-screen shots, showing both the train and the city above it, to create a sense of urgency and claustrophobia. The film's score, composed by David Shire, is upbeat and jazzy, which creates a contrast to the tense situations on the train. The tone of the movie is generally serious, but there are moments of levity that help balance out the intensity. Overall, "The Taking of Pelham One Two Three" is a quintessential 1970s crime thriller that still holds up today. It is a well-written, well-directed, and well-acted movie that keeps the audience engaged from start to finish. The cast is superb, and the tension is palpable, making it a must-watch for anyone who loves a good thriller.