The Station Agent (2003) starring Peter Dinklage, Paul Benjamin, Bobby Cannavale, Patricia Clarkson, Michelle Williams, John Slattery directed by Thomas McCarthy Movie Review

The Station Agent (2003)   4/54/54/54/54/5

Peter Dinklage in The Station Agent (2003)

Life with Dinklage

Finbar McBride (Peter Dinklage) is a train enthusiast who was born with dwarfism and who is tired off each day having to put up with the staring and jibes off those who should no better. When his boss and friend at the model train store suddenly dies Finbar finds himself inheriting a train depot in the middle of nowhere. Having grown tired of all the staring the life of isolation is what he wants but when you have isolation it is a different matter. But isolation doesn't last for long as he meets the grieving Olivia (Patricia Clarkson) who almost runs him down twice and the friendly and very chatty hot dog vendor Joe (Bobby Cannavale).

I am not going to do a proper review of "The Station Agent" because this is a movie which you need to watch and experience to understand what is so good about it. But I will mention a few things such as the eye opening realism which the subject of dwarfism is dealt with as we observe the daily ritual of people staring at Finbar and in some cases making insensitive jokes. You can understand why this guy would seek solitude when every day you are on show even when you are just going about your day to day business. But we also have other things and we have two scenes where Olivia suffers a driving mishap which forces Finbar into a ditch, a scene which is amusing yet not slapstick. Now I could go on but all I will say is we have these three characters that get drawn together in such a wonderful way.

Now Bobby Cannavale and Patricia Clarkson deliver good performances and deliver the comedy dialogue in a wonderfully dry way that you are drawn into these characters. But it is Peter Dinklage who is the star of "The Station Agent" and delivers such a wonderful character. Right from the word go you begin to understand his character; the guy tired of people staring, who would love to be left alone, who has a kind, caring face yet at times can deliver an expression which says don't mess with me. It is a wonderful performance from Dinklage which draws you in as his responses to Cannavale's enthusiastic Joe or Clarkson's depressed Olivia are perfect.

What this all boils down to is that "The Station Agent" is a fantastic movie which is amusing, touching, has depth and so much more. As a reviewer it is the sort of movie which you can't do justice to in words but needs to be experienced to understand and enjoy.