It's rookie train conductor Will Coulsen's (Chris Pine) first day on the job, and, paired up with cynical veteran engineer Frank Barnes (Denzel Washington), he's in for a bumpy ride. Will has no idea how rough his day's about to get, though, as on another line, bumbling engineer Dewey (Ethan Suplee) has accidentally let a freight train depart unmanned.
With a runaway train careering down the track, yardmaster Connie Hooper (Rosario Dawson) fears the damage that could be caused by a crash, while Oscar Galvin (Kevin Dunn) and his fellow execs just fear the damage that could be done to the company's bank balance.
With plans in place to derail the locamotive, the stakes are raised when it emerges that it is carrying barrels of toxic chemicals. Any sort of crash would spill the cargo, decimating everything in its wake. As the train approaches a highly populated part of Pennsylvania, Will and Frank come up with a rescue plan that will require them to put their lives on the line.
Tony Scott directs Washington for a fifth time in this highly enjoyable action thriller. Arguably their most satisfying collaboration to date, Unstoppable is a perfect popcorn flick-undemanding yet entertaining, cheesy but fun.
Washington, Pine and Dawson are never stretched but put in likeable turns, while Mike Bomback's straightforward script ensures things chug along nicely. Scott's pacey direction keeps excitement levels high, leaving you gripped until the story reaches its gratifying, if unsurprising, conclusion.