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Reviewer's grade: A

Roy (Woody Harrelson, "Semi-Pro," "No Country for Old Men") rescued his wife (Emily Mortimer, "Lars and the Real Girl," "Match Point") from a misguided life of substance abuse and aimlessness, but it's clear that Jessie misses the adventures life out of control once afforded her. Jessie and Roy meet a nomadic train couple, Abby (Kate Mara, "Shooter," "We Are Marshall") and Carlos (Eduardo Noriega, "Vantage Point," "The Devil's Backbone"), who have ragged passports filled with stamps and storie s. Before long, Carlos is assertively gazing at Jessie, who can't help but guiltily swoon to his mussed hair, perfectly disheveled T-shirt and aggressive flirting.

The young couple seems particularly sketchy,  scheming and a bit too eager to befriend Roy and Jessie, who get separated at a train stop. Betrayal abounds and Jessie starts lying, but when Roy introduces his wife to their new travel companion, a Russian narcotics detective named Grinko (Ben Kingsley, "The Wackness," "The Love Guru"), her lies quickly start to crumble.

Directed and co-written by Brad Anderson ("Session 9," "The Machinist"), "Transsiberian" is a visual wonder and a thrilling ride. R

"?Joe Wertz


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