The ‘Girl on Train’ Trailer Solidifies That Emily Blunt Is Perfect For This Role

Film adaptations of popular novels are often anticipated with nervous excitement, but the trailer for The Girl On The Train, based on Paula Hawkins’ bestselling psychological thriller, should soothe concerns that the movie won’t live up to the book. Released online today, this first look at the film, starring Emily Blunt, Justin Theroux and Haley Bennett, almost eerily matches my own mental picture of the landscape, characters and tension when I read the page-turning novel last year. I literally envisioned Emily Blunt as crazy obsessive Rachel, so when it was announced that she would be playing the role, I had an early confidence that the movie would do the book justice. Scenically, the movie appears to perfectly capture those important and recurring locations, from the gorgeous white house with its second-floor deck where Rachel sees Megan Hipwell (Bennett) for the first time, to the long, dark tunnel where the young, beautiful nanny goes missing.

The character of Rachel is complex and compelling, not unlike the anti-heroines in Gillian Flynn’s novels (Gone Girl and Dark Places). She’s an on-and-off the wagon drunk who becomes a suspect in Megan’s disappearance after she’s spotted stumbling and incoherent in the area that same night. Her inability to remember details causes her to both question her own haunting memories and her gut instinct about what might have happened and who might be to blame. This role might be Blunt’s ticket to an Oscar nomination if you ask me.

The only thing that gives me pause is Justin Theroux being cast as Tom, Rachel’s shady ex-husband, who lives down the block from Megan (who helps care for Tom and his new wife Anna’s baby) and her husband Scott. I pictured someone more clean cut, while Theroux is basically a walking, talking human chain wallet. But given how much The Girl On The Train seems to have gotten right, I’m willing to give Mr. Jennifer Aniston a chance, I suppose.