Made at the height of the slasher film craze Terror Train is an effective and semi creepy killer thriller. It features many of the genre’s famous cliches, and yet the setting is unique. While there have been mystery films with killings taking place on trains most slasher films are set in the woods or in deserted locations. The murderer may or may not be someone from a group of friend’s past as they gruesomely kill their victims.
Jamie Lee Curtis choose to make another horror film despite the risk of being type cast as a scream queen. She is the sympathetic final girl forced to deal with a terrible situation. Unfortunately for everyone the train is in the middle of nowhere, putting the slasher theme of people isolated and trapped in a lonely place with no way to get help. This only ups the tension further.
With some brutal kills and an entertaining finale Terror Train is one of the best of the 80s slasher films. From my experience a lot of the quality slasher films over the decades have been stand alone, films without sequels. I was amused that Ben Johnson starred in this movie after making so many westerns. That was a nice touch.