Box art for Strangers On A Train (1951)

Strangers On A Train (1951)

drama, thrillers


Strange thing about this trip. So much occurs in pairs. Tennis star Guy (Farley Granger) hates his unfaithful wife. Mysterious Bruno (Robert Walker) hates his father. How perfect for a playful proposal: I'll kill yours, you kill mine.

Rotten Tomatoes® scores

  • Critic Score
    98%
  • Audience Score
    93%

common sense

ON for kids age 14
Consumerism
0 out of 5
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
0 out of 5
Language
0 out of 5
Positive messages
0 out of 5
Sex
0 out of 5
Violence
3 out of 5

Classic nail-biter is a must for thriller fans.

what parents need to know

Parents need to know that this is solid nail-biting entertainment for those who enjoy stylish, well-crafted suspense. Don't expect a moral here, but do expect a lot of suspense and some dark subject matter that makes it inappropriate for young viewers who should probably stick to Scooby-Doo. The British version devotes slightly more screen time to Bruno's Liberace-like flamboyance, giving that fateful meeting with Guy on the train a vague air of flirtation. Parents concerned about homoerotic content need not be; it's presented discreetly, merely as a character trait.

what families can talk about

  • Families can talk about the hallmarks of a suspense film, and how continued suspense, especially when the tension and danger continues to increase, is often more thrilling, entertaining, and downright scary than films filled with constant, gratuitous violence.

movie reviews from Rotten Tomatoes®

Top Critic Reviews

Fresh:

- Cole Smithey, ColeSmithey.com, Thursday, June 24, 2010

Fresh:

- Emanuel Levy, EmanuelLevy.Com, Thursday, June 24, 2010

Fresh: Even more marvelous after a second viewing

- Gabe Leibowitz, Film and Felt, Thursday, June 24, 2010

Audience Reviews

3 stars

"What is a life or two, Guy? Some people are better off dead. Well, like your wife and my father, for instance." It's the perfect murder. Two strangers meet, and each kill off the victim of the other. There's no motive linking the killer to the crime, so theoretically the police would never have a reason to suspect what actually happened. Of course, even the perfect plan can fail when one of the participants has no intention of actually going through with the crime, and the other is mentally disturbed. We've seen Hitchcock tackle "the perfect murder" before in Dial M for Murder, and it's no real surprise that both movies deal with the disastrous results of a crime that turns out to be not nearly so perfect. I also ended up liking both movies to about the same degree. Strangers on a Train does one thing extremely well, and that's suspense. It may be one of the most suspenseful Hitchcock movies that I've seen, and that's saying something. But unlike my favorite Hitchcock movies, it doesn't have much to offer beyond that near-constant tension. I didn't find the characters particularly interesting, and the story didn't do much for me. The merry-go-round scene at the end was incredibly impressive, but it probably will be quite a while before I revisit this one. With that said, an average Hitchcock movie is still worth seeing at least once.

- lewiskendell, Sunday, June 27, 2010

5 stars

Another one of my favorite films from Hitchcock. The plot alone makes this movie perfect. It s so incredibly demented and genius at the same time that you can t help but watch and see how it plays out. It also has a nice little bit about being a celebrity, don t talk to odd men you don t know. Secretly, they could want you to kill their mother. Robert Walker also gave a career best and is still one of my favorite Hitchcock villains. I also loved Farley Granger because he had a really nice edge to him that most protagonists don t have. Another perfectly directed film that anyone can appreciate.

- ythelastman89, Thursday, April 29, 2010

1 star

Interesting premise poorly executed, Ridiculous unconvincing moments come one after another just to make the story progress or create excitement & thrills, for example Anne's sister's resembelance to Miriam & the way Anne suddenly becomes super-genius & discovers everything is hilariously ridiculous

- arashxak, Thursday, November 12, 2009