Watchworthy

The Best Train Movies 

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
Updated September 11, 2019 2.7k votes 674 voters 70.8k views 46 items

List Rules Movies must feature trains.

What are the best train movies ever made? This list includes a lot of different movies that all feature trains in some fashion. Whether it's comedy or drama, the great train movies included here are all memorable. Some of them are among the best movies of all time, too. Which one is your favorite? Vote up the train films you like the most and feel free to rerank this list any way you want. If any good train movies are missing, feel free to add them to the list.

Some of the best train films are train robbery movies. Among them: The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3 and The Great Train Robbery. Trains are an excellent vehicle (so to speak) for story lines involving robberies. They're fast, dangerous and an exciting means of transportation, after all. Along those lines, two outstanding Alfred Hitchcock films both involve trains: 1951's Strangers on a Train and 1959's North By Northwest.

Without a doubt, some of the best comedy films are also about trains. Who can forget the hilariously classic Planes, Trains and Automobiles, starring Steve Martin and John Candy? And 1976's Silver Streak is a comedy thriller that includes murder, mayhem and the comedic genius of Gene Wilder and Richard Pryor.

Enjoy this list of top notch railroad movies, and don't forget to vote!
Data-driven recommendations based on voting from over 40 million monthly visits to Ranker. Try the free app
list ordered by
1
Silver Streak is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Train Movies
Richard Pryor, Gene Wilder, Ned Beatty

Released: 1976

Directed by: Arthur Hiller

Silver Streak is a 1976 comedy-thriller film about an event on a Los Angeles-to-Chicago train journey. It was directed by Arthur Hiller and stars Gene Wilder, Jill Clayburgh, and Richard Pryor, ...more

More Silver Streak 

#280 of 1,027 The All-Time Greatest Comedy Films #925 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #218 of 1,208 The Absolute Funniest Movies Of All Time

2
The Train is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Train Movies
Burt Lancaster, Jeanne Moreau, Paul Scofield

Released: 1964

Directed by: John Frankenheimer, Arthur Penn

The Train is a 1964 black-and-white film directed by John Frankenheimer from a story and screenplay by Franklin Coen and Frank Davis, based on the non-fiction book Le front de l'art by Rose ...more

More The Train 

#158 of 375 The 50+ Best War Movies Ever Made, Ranked #73 of 222 The Greatest World War II Movies of All Time #164 of 195 The Best Movies of the '60s

3
The Polar Express is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Train Movies
Tom Hanks, Steven Tyler, Josh Hutchersonm

Released: 2004

Directed by: Robert Zemeckis

The Polar Express is a 2004 American motion capture computer-animated musical Christmas fantasy film based on the children's book of the same title by Chris Van Allsburg. Written, produced, and ...more

More The Polar Express 

#78 of 601 The Best Animated Films Ever #296 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #124 of 366 The Best Movies Based On Books

4
Planes, Trains and Autom... is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Train Movies
Steve Martin, Kevin Bacon, John Candy

Released: 1987

Directed by: John Hughes

Planes, Trains and Automobiles is a 1987 American comedy film written, produced and directed by John Hughes. The film stars Steve Martin as Neal Page, a high-strung marketing executive, who ...more

More Planes, Trains and Automobiles 

#51 of 571 The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked #74 of 349 'Old' Movies Every Young Person Needs To Watch In Their Lifetime #12 of 1,027 The All-Time Greatest Comedy Films

5
Emperor of the North is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Train Movies
Ernest Borgnine, Lee Marvin, Keith Carradine

Released: 1973

Directed by: Robert Aldrich

Emperor of the North Pole is a 1973 American film directed by Robert Aldrich and starring Lee Marvin, Ernest Borgnine, and Keith Carradine. It was re-released under the shorter title Emperor of ...more
6
North by Northwest is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Train Movies
Olivia Peterman added Cary Grant, Alfred Hitchcock, Eva Marie Saint

Released: 1959

Directed by: Alfred Hitchcock

North by Northwest is a 1959 American spy thriller film directed by Alfred Hitchcock and starring Cary Grant, Eva Marie Saint and James Mason. The screenplay was written by Ernest Lehman, who ...more

More North by Northwest 

#70 of 250 The Best Psychological Thrillers of All Time #617 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #329 of 548 The Greatest Movies for Guys

7
Murder on the Orient Exp... is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Train Movies
CraigAlarm added Sean Connery, Ingrid Bergman, Lauren Bacall

Released: 1974

Directed by: Sidney Lumet

This film is a 1974 British Technicolor mystery film directed by Sidney Lumet, starring Albert Finney as Hercule Poirot, and based on the 1934 novel of the same name by Agatha Christie.

More Murder on the Orient Express 

#1,157 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #67 of 591 The Best '70s Movieslisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

8
Back to the Future Part ... is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Train Movies
Michael J. Fox, Elisabeth Shue, Christopher Lloyd

Released: 1990

Directed by: Robert Zemeckis

Back to the Future Part III is a 1990 American science fiction Western film. It is the third and final installment of the Back to the Future trilogy. The film was directed by Robert Zemeckis and ...more

More Back to the Future Part III 

#86 of 493 The Funniest '90s Movies #56 of 163 The Best Science Fiction Action Movies #128 of 1,027 The All-Time Greatest Comedy Films

9
Snowpiercer is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Train Movies
CraigAlarm added Chris Evans, John Hurt, Tilda Swinton

Released: 2013

Directed by: Bong Joon-ho

Snowpiercer is a 2013 South Korean-Czech dystopian science-fiction action film based on the French graphic novel Le Transperceneige by Jacques Lob, Benjamin Legrand and Jean-Marc Rochette. A new ...more

More Snowpiercer 

Post-Apocalyptic Classic ‘Snowpiercer’ May Be The Most Underrated Sci-Fi Movie Of The Century #145 of 163 The Best Science Fiction Action Movies #136 of 187 The Best Superhero Movies Ever Made

10
The Taking of Pelham 123... is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Train Movies
John Travolta, Denzel Washington, James Gandolfini

Released: 2009

Directed by: Tony Scott

The Taking of Pelham 123 is a 2009 American thriller film directed by Tony Scott, and starring Denzel Washington and John Travolta. It is a film adaptation of the novel by Morton Freedgood, and ...more

More The Taking of Pelham 123 

#580 of 726 The Best Black Movies Ever Made, Ranked #29 of 94 Best Kidnapping Movies & Hostage Movies of All Time, Ranked #13 of 29 The Best Thriller Movies with a Hostage

11
Strangers on a Train is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Train Movies
Alfred Hitchcock, Farley Granger, Leo G. Carroll

Released: 1951

Directed by: Alfred Hitchcock

Strangers on a Train is a 1951 American psychological thriller film noir produced and directed by Alfred Hitchcock, and based on the 1950 novel Strangers on a Train by Patricia Highsmith. It was ...more

More Strangers on a Train 

#146 of 250 The Best Psychological Thrillers of All Time #748 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #58 of 147 The Best and Scariest Psychological Thrillers of All Time

12
Runaway Train is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Train Movies
JeffStovall added Jon Voight, Rebecca De Mornay, Eric Roberts

Released: 1985

Directed by: Andrei Konchalovsky

Runaway Train is a 1985 American action-thriller film, directed by Andrei Konchalovsky. The screenplay by Djordje Milicevic, Paul Zindel and Edward Bunker was based on an original screenplay by ...more

More Runaway Train 

#442 of 571 The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked #416 of 548 The Greatest Movies for Guys #153 of 568 The Greatest Disaster Movies of All Time

13
The General is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Train Movies
Boris Karloff, Mike Donlin, Glen Cavender

Released: 1926

Directed by: Buster Keaton, Clyde Bruckman

The General is a 1926 American silent comedy film released by United Artists. Inspired by the Great Locomotive Chase, which happened in 1862, the film stars Buster Keaton who co-directed it with ...more

More The General 

#342 of 1,027 The All-Time Greatest Comedy Films #491 of 1,208 The Absolute Funniest Movies Of All Time #120 of 232 The Best Black and White Movies Ever Made

14
Source Code is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Train Movies
Jake Gyllenhaal, Michelle Monaghan, Vera Farmiga

Released: 2011

Directed by: Duncan Jones

Source Code is a 2011 science fiction film directed by Duncan Jones, written by Ben Ripley, and starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Michelle Monaghan, Vera Farmiga, and Jeffrey Wright. The film had its ...more

More Source Code 

#161 of 250 The Best Psychological Thrillers of All Time #137 of 163 The Best Science Fiction Action Movies #1,396 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies

15
Under Siege 2: Dark Terr... is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Train Movies
Katherine Heigl, Steven Seagal, Morris Chestnut

Released: 1995

Directed by: Geoff Murphy

Under Siege 2: Dark Territory is a 1995 American action film set on board a train traveling through the Rocky Mountains from Denver to Los Angeles. Directed by Geoff Murphy, it stars Steven ...more

More Under Siege 2: Dark Territory 

#458 of 548 The Greatest Movies for Guys #14 of 21 'Die Hard' Ripoffs, Ranked By How Hard They Die #2 of 14 The Most Ridiculous Movie Hacking Scenes, Ranked By Silliness

16
From Russia with Love is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Train Movies
Sean Connery, Robert Shaw, Daniela Bianchi

Released: 1963

Directed by: Terence Young

From Russia with Love is the second James Bond film made by Eon Productions and the second to star Sean Connery as the fictional MI6 agent James Bond. Released in 1963, the film was produced by ...more

More From Russia with Love 

#1,097 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #358 of 548 The Greatest Movies for Guys #188 of 366 The Best Movies Based On Books

17
Once Upon a Time in the ... is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Train Movies
PeteBoyle added Henry Fonda, Claudia Cardinale, Charles Bronson

Released: 1968

Directed by: Sergio Leone

Once Upon a Time in the West is a 1968 Italian/American epic Spaghetti Western film directed by Sergio Leone for Paramount Pictures. It stars Henry Fonda cast against type as the villain, ...more

More Once Upon a Time in the West 

#146 of 599 The Greatest Epic Movies Ever Made #1,029 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #214 of 293 The Top Tearjerker Movies That Make Men Cry

18
Transsiberian is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Train Movies
Kate Mara, Woody Harrelson, Ben Kingsley

Released: 2008

Directed by: Brad Anderson

Transsiberian is a 2008 Spanish-German-British-Lithuanian thriller film, set on the Trans-Siberian Railway, in which an American couple's journey from China to Russia becomes a nightmare after ...more

More Transsiberian 

#143 of 157 The Best Movies You Never Want to Watch Again #29 of 35 The Best Snowy Thriller Movies, Ranked #289 of 528 The Greatest Crime Movies Ever Made

19
The Taking of Pelham One... is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Train Movies
SamCannon added Jerry Stiller, Walter Matthau, Robert Shaw

Released: 1974

Directed by: Joseph Sargent

The Taking of Pelham One Two Three is a 1974 American thriller film directed by Joseph Sargent, produced by Edgar J. Scherick, and starring Walter Matthau, Robert Shaw, Martin Balsam and ...more

More The Taking of Pelham One Two Three 

#1,395 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #90 of 591 The Best '70s Movies #567 of 581 The Greatest Film Scores of All Time

20
Breakheart Pass is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Train Movies
JeffStovall added Charles Bronson, Doug Atkins, Archie Moore

Released: 1975

Directed by: Tom Gries

Breakheart Pass is an American 1975 western adventure film that stars Charles Bronson, Ben Johnson, Richard Crenna, and Jill Ireland. The movie was based on the novel by Alistair MacLean of the ...more

More Breakheart Pass 

#130 of 395 The Best Western Movies Ever Made #38 of 45 The Best Western Movies of the '70s #53 of 162 The Best Western Movies on Amazon Prime

21
Train to Busan is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Train Movies
Gong Yoo, Ma Dong-seok, Jung Yu-mi

Released: 2016

Directed by: Yeon Sang-ho

Train to Busan is a 2016 South Korean zombie apocalypse action thriller film directed by Yeon Sang-ho. A man, his estranged daughter and other passengers become trapped on a speeding train ...more

More Train to Busan 

#619 of 847 The Best Horror Movies Of All Time #2 of 130 The Best Korean Movies Of All Time #5 of 204 The Best Zombie Horror Films

22
The Battle of the Rails ... is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Train Movies
Francois Joux, Jean Daurand, Robert Le Ray

Released: 1945

Directed by: René Clément

The Battle of the Rails is a 1946 war movie directed by René Clément which tells the courageous efforts by French railway workers to sabotage Nazi reinforcement-troop trains. The ...more
23
The Great Train Robbery ... is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Train Movies
Olivia Peterman added Broncho Billy Anderson, Alfred C. Abadie, Donald Gallaher

Released: 1903

Directed by: Edwin S. Porter

The Great Train Robbery is a 1903 American silent short Western film written, produced, and directed by Edwin S. Porter, a former Edison Studios cameraman. Actors in the movie included Alfred C. ...more
24
Broken Arrow is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Train Movies
John Travolta, Christian Slater, Howie Long

Released: 1996

Directed by: John Woo

Broken Arrow is a 1996 American action film directed by John Woo, written by Graham Yost, and starring John Travolta and Christian Slater.
25
Union Pacific is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Train Movies
rodgtax added Barbara Stanwyck, Anthony Quinn, Joel McCrea

Released: 1939

Directed by: Cecil B. DeMille

Union Pacific is a 1939 American dramatic western film directed by Cecil B. DeMille, and starring Barbara Stanwyck and Joel McCrea. Based on the novel Trouble Shooter by Western fiction author ...more