Runstedler’s DVD Pick of the Month: Midnight Meat Train

No, it’s not gay pornography. Midnight Meat Train is a 2008 horror film adapted from one of Clive Barker’s short stories in the Books of Blood. Arguably the most stunning and visceral of the stories from the first volume of Books of Blood, Midnight Meat Train is about a photographer who investigates a series of brutal murders in the underground subway of New York City.

Barker is known for his gore and sexual content and compelling storylines (being the mastermind behind The Damnation Game and The Hellbound Heart, the latter of which was adapted into Hellraiser, which features the iconic Cenobite Pinhead), and Midnight Meat Train doesn’t disappoint. It remains faithful to Barker’s vision, and even takes it a step further, giving the audience one of the most heartwrenching and downright brutal endings I’ve seen in quite some time.

That being said, I think this film is vastly underrated. While the CGI is a bit cheesy at times, particularly during some of the murder sequences, the storyline is first-rate, the acting is decent, and the chemistry between the actors is believable. The film has a great atmosphere about it, particularly as we descend further and further into the depths of the underground, both physically, metaphysically and psychologically. The creatures of the subway really contribute to that atmosphere, as their presence towards the film and the film’s shocking ending indicates.

Certainly not for the feint of heart, the film is produced by none other than Clive Barker, directed by Ryuhei Kitamura, and stars Bradley Cooper, Brooke Shields and the charming Leslie Bibb, Midnight Meat Train is guaranteed to please horror buffs and cinephiles alike.

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