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Movie Review: Rocky Mountain Express


Is there a train lover in your life? If so, don’t miss Rocky Mountain Express, an IMAX movie now showing at the Pacific Science Center.

This documentary tells the story of railroad construction across Canada in the late 1800s, tracing progress westward from Vancouver and through nearly impassable mountain ranges. If that sounds boring, don’t be fooled. This movie features close-up footage of a beautifully-restored historic steam engine, stunning mountain scenery, and plenty of good music. (We particularly enjoyed Peter, Paul and Mary’s version of “500 Miles.”)

Interspersed with the gorgeous IMAX footage are historical images of the hardships encountered by railroad workers and descriptions of feats of engineering required to build tracks scaling the mountains. Train fanatics and others alike will enjoy this excellent film.

The movie runs about 40 minutes and is rated G, for all audiences. A 2½ year-old in our party liked everything about the movie “except the talking” but was able to sit still until the last couple of minutes, possibly an attention span record!

Our recommendation: We highly recommend Rocky Mountain Express for train aficionados, ages 2 to 100, and those who love them. Our only caution concerns the volume of some steam train sounds in the film. Those very sensitive to loud noises may find some moments too loud for their liking.

Playing at:
Pacific Science Center’s Boeing IMAX Theater
Multiple shows daily, admissions cost $6–9

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