The Girl on the Train is a 2016 American mystery thriller drama film directed by Tate Taylor and written by Erin Cressida Wilson, based on Paula Hawkins‘ 2015 debut novel of the same name. The film stars Emily Blunt, Haley Bennett, Rebecca Ferguson, Justin Theroux, Luke Evans, Allison Janney, Édgar Ramírez, and Lisa Kudrow, and follows an alcoholic divorcée who becomes involved in a missing persons investigation.
Principal photography began on November 4, 2015 in New York City. Produced by Marc Platt and DreamWorks Pictures, The Girl on the Train was the first DreamWorks Pictures film to be distributed by Universal Pictures, as part of DreamWorks’ new distribution deal. It premiered in London on September 20, 2016 and was theatrically released in the United States on October 7, 2016. The film received mixed reviews and has grossed $172 million worldwide.
Rachel Watson (Emily Blunt) is an alcoholic who divorced her husband, Tom Watson (Justin Theroux), after catching him cheating on her with their real estate agent, Anna Boyd (Rebecca Ferguson). During their marriage, Rachel was prone to alcohol-induced blackouts during which she engaged in self-destructive behavior that she only later learned about from Tom, and to which she attributes the ending of their marriage, in addition to her being sterile.
Rachel shares an apartment with her friend Cathy (Laura Prepon) and spends her days commuting on a train, often stalking Tom, Anna, and their newborn daughter Evie. During her trips, Rachel grows fascinated with Tom’s neighbors, Scott (Luke Evans) and Megan Hipwell (Haley Bennett), a young couple in what Rachel believes is a perfect marriage. In reality, Scott is aggressive and controlling, while Megan is detached and unfaithful, maintaining affairs with numerous men, including her psychiatrist, Dr. Kamal Abdic (Édgar Ramírez).
While passing by the neighborhood one day, Rachel spots Megan kissing Abdic on her balcony and becomes infuriated by what she perceives as Megan’s ruining her “perfect” marriage. After a drinking binge, Rachel leaves the train to confront Megan, only to black out and awaken hours later at her apartment, injured. Rachel later finds out that Megan is missing and presumed dead, and is questioned by Detective Sergeant Riley (Allison Janney), who suspects Rachel might be involved due to her recent erratic behavior.
Rachel, pretending to be a friend of Megan’s, approaches Scott and tells him about Megan’s affair. Scott identifies Abdic as Megan’s lover. Believing Abdic is behind Megan’s disappearance, Rachel schedules an appointment with him, wherein they discuss Rachel’s troubled relationship with Tom, particularly an incident in which she lashed out at an office party and aggravated Tom’s boss’s wife Martha (Lisa Kudrow), leading to Tom being fired.
At a bar, Rachel recognizes another commuter, who reveals that he followed her when she left the train the night that Megan disappeared and heard her cursing at a woman. The commuter later found Rachel unconscious in a tunnel, having been severely beaten by an unseen figure, but she aggressively declined his help. Rachel returns to the tunnel and recalls seeing Megan with Tom and shouting at her before being ambushed. Meanwhile, Anna becomes suspicious of Tom after Sgt. Riley suggests that he is encouraging Rachel’s behavior by keeping in touch with her. Anna attempts to hack into Tom’s computer and in the process, she finds a secret phone with several voice messages to another woman Tom is having an affair with, later verifying that the phone was Megan’s.
Megan is found dead and forensics determine she was pregnant, but the child was neither Scott’s nor Abdic’s. Scott becomes a suspect and confronts Rachel, believing she is conspiring against him, and in the process reveals he assaulted Megan prior to her death. Rachel runs into Martha and apologizes for her behavior at the party, only to discover she didn’t lash out or get Tom fired, but rather Tom was fired for having sexual relations with numerous co-workers. Rachel realizes Tom planted false memories in her head to account for his own abusive behavior.
Anna identifies the woman Tom was exchanging phone calls with as Megan, and finds out Tom and Megan were having an affair. Rachel realizes Megan was pregnant with Tom’s baby and confided that to Abdic, leading to Rachel misinterpreting the nature of their encounter on the balcony. After leaving the train that day, Rachel caught Tom meeting with Megan and shouted at her, mistaking her for Anna. Tom then beat Rachel before returning to Megan, who announced she was keeping the baby. Realizing this would expose their affair, Tom murdered Megan.
Source Page – Wikipedia