Cinematically, Train clearly emulates its indubitably inspiring example Hostel. A few easygoing American wrestling pros miss their train towards the Ukraine due to a boozing night. They have to take the next one and later, one after another finds himself in an abandoned wagon, where an ill-tempered and taciturn hulk rids them of various body parts. He does not seem to set great value upon hygiene requirements or the physical well-being of his "patients", so that the suffering is quite profound, of course. So while they are transported through wastelands without signs of civilisation, rescue seems to be out of the question, since the train's crew is in the secret. The passengers are of no help, as well, since they have apparently paid a pretty penny for the body parts and subsequent operations. Now it is up to the heroic Americans to show some unruliness and escape their premature organ donation.
The history of censorship of Train offers fertile soil for the hypes of gorehounds. The MPAA punished the horror movie, belonging to the genre of Torture Porn, with a commercially deadly NC-17-rating. Contrary to the usual gory Unrated-releases, only the censored R-rated version (for strong grisly bloody violence, disturbing images, sexual content and language) has been released in the US so far. Fortunately, this censored version was not the only one to be released worldwide. Quietly and clandestine and without an explicit indication, a longer version of the film was released on DVD and Blu-ray in France.
But even the French board of film classification seems to have noticed that the longer version nearly exclusively brings along extended violent scenes (adding up to 59.16 sec. of new footage): the released received a quite rare age 18 approval (even Inside and Martyrs have received a 16 rating...). The censorship of the R-rated version are typical MPAA cuts, which are mainly concerned with single frames in order to make the impact of a scene a little less drastic. It was refrained from more complex proceedings, such as the insertion of alternative footage. Even though there is no conclusive proof that the French version really is the said NC-17 version, one can quite surely assume that.
Comparison between the cut R-rated version and the French version (18 rating), represented by the French DVD by EuropaCorp/Fox Pathe)
27 differences, consisting of
17 extended scenes
9 additional scenes
1 additional scene in the R-rated version
The French version is 23.36 seconds longer than the R-rated version.
0:02:07: The French version shows the skinned man breathing in stertorously. He is still alive.
Additional scene in the R-Rated
R-Rated: 0:07:49: The R-rated contains an exclusive scene. When the group is on its way to the club, Alex discovers the train at the station. Claire and the others are occupied with finding the way.
+ 35.8 sec.
0:08:14: The blond lady can show her breasts some more.
0:08:17: The threesome can be seen earlier, the woman moans.
0:23:22: Coach Harris looks around in panic, while Vlad removes one of his organs and puts it in a bowl filled with ice cubes. Harris groans dizzily.
0:23:34: Vlad reaches into Harris' open abdominal wall with both hands.
0:23:42: Vlad potters around in the bloody gaping stomach wound for a few frames longer.
0:23:53: Vlad severes Coach Harris' tongue considerably longer. The following view from further away is longer, too.
0:29:15: An explicit shot of the iron rod being pierced through Todd's shoulder and blood splashing around can only be seen in the French version.
0:33:20: In the French version, Vlad continues to cut up Todd's back with a scalpel some more.
0:33:24: The hazardous and certainly very painful supporting strucure, a hook in Todd's wrist, is seen in a close-up once again.
0:33:27: Vlad first stretches the cut on Todd's back and then inserts his tool at the backbone.
0:33:45: When Vlad starts pulling Todd's eye out, the R-rated version only shows the middle part of this rather short shot. Thus, the French version shows minor extensions at the beginning...
0:33:48: ...and the ending of the scene.
0:33:50: This is rather a quibble: The ripped out eye is seen a bit longer in the claw.
0:38:57: Vlad slashes at Sheldon with a knife now. This shot is missing the beginning, at which one can clearly see the blade.
0:39:01: The beginning of the shot of Sheldon, squalling in pain, is missing.
0:39:17: Vlad holds Sheldon's severed "family planning" in his hands some longer.
0:44:19: The French version shows some more of the suffering Claire. She is seen again while having a hook in her lower jaw and the conductor holding on to it.
0:48:46: Exclusively in this version, one can see the dead Todd. Rivers of blood spout from the wound in his neck, after Sheldon has delivered him from his pain with a blow of the axe.
0:55:16: The R-rated version misses very explicit view of Vlad, sawing into Sheldon's thorax with a disk saw and a shot of Sheldon, flinching with pain.
0:55:20: And even more views of the suffering Shelton and the use of the disk saw.
0:55:38: Vlad is seen earlier, as he reaches into Sheldon's rib cage.
0:55:41: Vlad reaches into the gaping wound of the stertorously breathing Sheldon.
0:55:46: Vlad removes the heart.
1:25:12: The French version offers a new explicit view of the axe in Vlad's abdomen and a shot of Alex.
1:25:22: One can see Vlad's guts falling to the ground a few frames earlier.