Only slightly more recommendable than [the other film we discussed this month] Play Time – though that’s damning with non-existent praise – is the Czech comedy “Closely Watched Trains.”


You could say that this a sweet coming-of-age tale in which the young main character learns how to love thanks to an more experienced partner. 


Or, you could say:  Randy horndog obsessed with “losin’ it” finally does so in the arms of a hottie older woman!!*    


However you phrase it, it’s set in a train station during the Nazi occupation of Czechoslovakia in WWII.  And that’s about as far as the war comes into the story until the end of the film, when it makes a weird out-of-nowhere plot turn involving blowing up a train.


Where does it come from?  We have no idea that the character who instigates this has political leanings.  He too, is obsessed with sex.  We might say about this, mid-life crisis gives man new perspective on life and the chance to redeem himself.


Or, we could state it:  Middle-aged sex obsessive with a fetish for rubber stamps gets kicks from the new sport of “extreme trainspotting.” **


In any case, we just don’t know.  And so we’re left in the dark as to any motivations, which makes it, overall, a very unsatisfying film.

John Kephart




*This view of  “Closely Watched Trains” is the sole opinion of the author and is not reflected by anyone in management.  Thank you.


**Once again, opinions that have nothing to do with us, the management.  Thank you for reading this small print.