Railway Children Review – A Charming, Feel-Good, Family Friendly Film

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Railway Children, from Blue Fox Entertainment, brings to the screen an inviting and charming story of how a village of World War II evacuee children banded together to bring hope, healing, and freedom to an American GI.

The film begins in 1944, during the height of WWII and the London air raids. A mom is at the train station, saying goodbye to her three children, Lily, played by Beau Gadsdon, Pattie, played by Eden Hamilton and Teddy, played by Zac Cudby Watts.


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The train platform is filled with similar scenes as mom's fearing for the lives of their children send them from Salford to the Yorkshire village of Oakworth outside of harm's way, for protection from the nightly German bombings that were targeting the United Kingdom's major cities.

When they arrive in Oakworth, the trainload of evacuee children are met on the train station platform by Bobbie Waterbury, played by Jenny Agutter, reprising her iconic role in the original film, her daughter, Annie, played by Sheridan Smith, and grandson Thomas, played by Austin Haynes, and with their help the evacuees are soon settling into their new life in the countryside. 


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Interwoven throughout the scenes are the American MP and their treatment of the Africa American soldiers. During the first night in the new town we see, a young GI, Abe, played by KJ Aikens, sitting with a group of females singing. Within minutes, the bar is raided by MP's and the alive in the American South had migrated across the pond. Abe, we find, jumps over a railing to escape and in the process is injured.

With Thomas as their guide, Lily, Pattie, and Teddy, are finding out all the hiding places around the town, where during this heightened time of responsibility and everyone doing his part, Thomas has found an abandoned rail car caboose. As his dad is off fighting the German's he too maintains a secret mission, to make sure that no spies get anywhere near the rail yard. He also hides a ration or two of sweets in the car.

One day when the chidlren are playing hide and seek, Pattie decides to hide in the caboose. She sees the sweet tin has been opened and the candies are gone and what looks like a person hiding. She screams and Abe, who is now considered a deserter, pops up. The pair each flee the car.


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She finds her sister and now the four of them determined to find the German who is now hiding in the railroad yard and planning who know what scan the other rail cars. When the children finally find him, they realize he is an American soldier. He convinces them he is one a secret mission. They all agree to help him and are thrust into a dangerous quest to assist their new friend who, like them, is a long way from home.

With a feel good and hopeful ending, Railway Children is inspired by one of the most beloved British family films of all time and is an enchanting, moving, and heart-warming adventure for a new generation. 

Railway Children opens September 23, 2022. See it.


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Country: UK.

Language: English, with British slang.

Runtime: 100 minutes.

Director: Morgan Matthews.

Writer: Danny Brocklehurst, based on a treatment by Jemma Rodgers.

Cast: Jenny Agutter, John Bradley, Beau Gadsdon, KJ Aikens, Austin Haynes, Jessica Baglow, Hugh Quarshie, Neil Hurst, Tom Courtenay, Sheridan Smith, Zac Cudby Watts, Eden Hamilton.

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