Though it’s a remake, The Taking of Pelham 123 has an intriguing pedigree. It’s written by Brian Helgeland [L.A. Confidential, Conspiracy Theory, and Mystic River among other things] and directed by Tony Scott [Top Gun, True Romance and Deja Vu – but also The Fan and Domino], whose career hasn’t been exactly hot of late. The Talking of Pelham 123 may make Scott an in demand director again and it certainly won’t hurt Helgeland’s career, either.
It doesn’t seem like a particularly bad day for Walter Garber [Denzel Washington]. He’s running a section of dispatch for the New York City subway and things are going smoothly. We know that’s going to change because we see a series of quick cuts with determined looking men boarding a particular train – one of them is Ryder [John Travolta]. An unexpected moment of violence puts their plan into action a bit early, but it goes smoothly and the determined men take control of the train.