Watching Runaway Train felt like i was being let in on a wonderful secret; it's an oppressive, slow-burning apocalyptic thrill ride (maybe even bordering on a horror?), and quite unlike any other film I've seen. Almost a spiritual journey, the film touches on themes like existentialism, the soul, id; very few movies have ever even approached this kind of intelligence in this genre. The train is presented as a ghastly, emotionless monster, literally unstoppable and almost mythic. By the end of the film the machine has a character and a story. There are shots interspersed throughout the movie, tracking the blackened, hellish beast, and combined with the truly stunning score, wash frozen chills all over. Some will watch and be bored; by today's standards (and when it was released) the majority simply don't have the patience or the inclination to submit to a different way of story-telling in the action/thriller framework; but to see a gem as bright as this, unspoiled by Hollywood's ever-tightening constrictions, is the pure joy of cinema. Runaway Train feels like a one-way descent into Hades, and its an awesome ride.