CZ/SK verze

The Locomotive Legacy: How Trains Have Inspired Popular Culture Throughout the Decades

The Locomotive Legacy: How Trains Have Inspired Popular Culture Throughout the Decades
photo:"The Great Train Robbery" (1903)
15 / 03 / 2023

Trains and railways have been a major part of popular culture for centuries. From classic literature to modern movies, the railroad has been a subject of fascination and intrigue for people of all ages. In this article, we'll take a look at some of the most popular movies and books that feature trains and railways and explore their impact on popular culture.


One of the most iconic train movies is "The Great Train Robbery" (1903), which is considered to be one of the first narrative films ever made. This silent film tells the story of a group of robbers who attempt to steal money from a train. "The General" (1926) is another classic train movie that has stood the test of time. Starring Buster Keaton, the film is a comedy about a Southern engineer who tries to rescue his beloved locomotive from Union soldiers during the Civil War. "Murder on the Orient Express" (1974) is a murder mystery set on a luxury train travelling from Istanbul to Calais. The film, based on Agatha Christie's novel of the same name, features an all-star cast and is considered to be a classic of the genre.

"The Polar Express" / Franklin Theatre

More recently, "The Polar Express" (2004) has become a holiday favourite for families around the world. The animated film tells the story of a young boy who takes a magical train ride to the North Pole on Christmas Eve. "Snowpiercer" (2013) is a dystopian sci-fi film set on a train that travels around the world in a post-apocalyptic future. The movie explores themes of class, social inequality, and the struggle for survival in a harsh, unforgiving world.


One of the most famous books featuring trains is "Murder on the Orient Express" by Agatha Christie. The novel, first published in 1934, follows the detective Hercule Poirot as he investigates a murder on the famous train. Another classic train book is "The Railway Children" by E. Nesbit. The children's novel tells the story of three siblings who move to a house near a railway station and become fascinated with the trains that pass by.

"Murder on the Orient Express" / Alamy

In the science fiction genre, "The City and the Stars" by Arthur C. Clarke features a train that travels around a futuristic city. The novel explores themes of technology, progress, and the nature of humanity. "The Wheel of Time" series by Robert Jordan features a magical train called the "Wandering Woman" that travels between different dimensions. The train is a key element of the series and serves as a symbol of the characters' journey through the story.

In conclusion, the railroad has had a significant impact on popular culture, inspiring countless movies and books. From the golden age of steam locomotives to the modern era of high-speed trains, the railroad has captured the imagination of people around the world. Through the lens of popular culture, we can see the many ways that trains and railways have shaped our society, from their role in transportation and commerce to their impact on our daily lives.

As we continue to move towards a more sustainable future, the railroad remains an important part of our transportation infrastructure, providing an efficient and environmentally friendly way to move people and goods across the country. As such, we can expect the railroad to continue to inspire future generations of artists, writers, and filmmakers, leaving a lasting legacy on popular culture for years to come.