Mar 022021

Runaway Train is a great suspense-thriller and one of the few success stories from the Canon Group, garnering strong reviews and even two Academy Award nominations for Voight and Roberts.



Runaway Train

Genre(s): Action, Adventure, Thriller
Kino Lorber Classics | R – 111 min. – $29.95 | March 16, 2021

Date Published: 03/02/2021 | Author: The Movieman

Director: Andrey Konchalovskiy
Writer(s): Akira Kurosawa (original screenplay), Djordje Milicevic & Paul Zindel & Edward Bunker (screenplay)
Cast: Jon Voight, Eric Roberts, Rebecca De Mornay, Kyle T. Heffner, John P. Ryan

Features: Commentary, Featurette, Theatrical Trailer
Slip Cover: Yes
Digital Copy: No
Formats Included: Blu-ray
Number of Discs: 1

Audio: English (DTS-HD MA 2.0)
Video: 1080p/Widescreen 1.85
Subtitles: English SDH
Disc Size: 36.92 GB
Total Bitrate: 41.80 Mbps
Codecs: MPEG-4 AVC
Region(s): A

Kino Lorber provided me with a free copy of the Blu-ray I reviewed in this Blog Post.
The opinions I share are my own.


Plot Synopsis: Manny (JON VOIGHT) is the toughest convict in a remote Alaskan prison who, along with fellow inmate Buck (ERIC ROBERTS), makes a daring breakout. Hopping a freight train, they head full-steam for freedom, but when the engineer dies of a heart attack, they find themselves trapped, alone and speeding towards certain disaster. Until they discover a third passenger, beautiful railroad worker Sara (REBECCA DE MORNAY), who’s just as desperate and just as determined to survive as they are.

Quick Hit Review: Runaway Train is a brilliantly made suspense-thriller, with some fine character-driven scenes thrown in for good measure, from 1985. While I actually had this film in my collection I never sat down to actually watch it, and kind of regret it now. While it’s not a fantastic film, it is one featuring some very well done action scenes with the train and has great performances from Jon Voight and Eric Roberts, both of whom were nominated for an Academy Award. Also give some props to Rebecca De Mornay (as the only female actor in the film far as I can tell) as well as John P. Ryan portraying the evil bastard prison warden, the sort of role usually rich with opportunity and he doesn’t disappoint.

The film was directed by Andrey Konchalovsky from an original screenplay by the legendary Akira Kurosawa, the man behind so many classics from Rashomon to Seven Samurai (which subsequently were the basis for The Magnificent Seven) both fantastic Japanese films. Well, amazing films period. Here, not really see Kurosawa’s stamp, maybe lost with the trio of writers, but still it’s a compelling story, which is saying something given a good portion takes place on a train after all.



This release comes with a matted slip cover. There aren’t a ton of features but does include an Audio Commentary with Actor Eric Roberts and Film Historians David Del Valle and C. Courtney Joyner which was ported over from the Twilight Time Blu-ray. Also included is Trailers from Hell (2:49) commentary on the film’s trailer, two Radio Spots (1:04) and the Theatrical Trailer (1:58).


VIDEO – 4½/5

Runaway Train comes to Blu-ray through Kino Lorber after previously available in the format by Twilight Time. But unlike The Train which I believe was the same transfer, this one apparently received a new 1080p high-definition transfer taken from a 2K scan of the original film negative. For the most part the picture looks great, detail generally is sharp as there were a few scenes here and there wasn’t exactly crystal clear, but otherwise it was impressive. Also a plus, the natural film grain is still there, so nice to see that DNR wasn’t used or at least heavily utilized.

AUDIO – 4½/5

The movie comes with a surprisingly well balanced and strong DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0 track. It’s a fairly dynamic lossless track all things considered (the limited channels and age of the film), dialogue comes across with good clarity and when the train gets going, and smashes through another train, there is some nice depth on display.


OVERALL – 3¾/5

Runaway Train is a great suspense-thriller and one of the few success stories from the Canon Group, garnering strong reviews and even two Academy Award nominations for Voight and Roberts. The Blu-ray release from Kino Lorber offers up solid video and audio transfers and even with the limited features, better than nothing.




Check out some more 1080p screen caps by going to page 2. Please note, these do contain spoilers.

 Leave a Reply

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>