Go ahead and pass the aluminum cans of pre-mixed gin and tonic, because this trailer isn’t offering any. One of the things that makes Paula Hawkins’ bestselling mystery novel The Girl On The Train (one of The A.V. Club’s best books of last year) so compelling is that the unreliable narrator comes by her lack of trustworthiness the old-fashioned way: She’s a drunk. Like, a “waking up in the morning and buying a six-pack to down before noon” alcoholic who’s mourning the end of her marriage and making a mess of her life. Emily Blunt plays that title woman in this adaptation from The Help director Tate Taylor, and while there’s a brief reference to her being “afraid of” herself, the overall vibe is not one of a movie centered around an unstable lush.
Still, most of Hawkins’ story is on display here, with all the murder-mystery elements firmly in place. Rachel Watson (Blunt) is a thirtysomething who’s convinced she saw a woman one day on the train—a woman subsequently killed in a brutal attack. Soon, she’s embroiled in the investigation, trying to get to the bottom of this death that also involves her ex-husband (Justin Theroux), a suspicious cop (Allison Janney), and the unfortunate fact that, thanks to her drinking, she can’t remember what happened the night of the murder. Luke Evans and Rebecca Ferguson co-star, and maybe by the October 7 release date, the film will have sobered up and remembered to offer a hint of the severe drinking problem that drives so much of the plot.