Okay, so, let's break down this atrocity.
My wife and I watched this because it looked like the "Space Jam," of horror movies. To say, hats on hats on hats. There's a themed train robbery, then they're in the water, then monsters, then it looks like more modern times and it's daytime instead of the dead of night and they're on land ... it looked like a weir ride! It wasn't NOT that, I'll say that much.
First, it is hats on hats on hats, but, like, ONE part of that gets resolved. At the beginning, a modern-day lady and our main character eyebang each other for a weirdly long time. They don't end up interacting and having a romance story, because that would resemble human emotion and imply whoever wrote this hadn't been beaten over the head with a garden hoe until they couldn't remember their own name. The shot composition implies either they will fall in love or one of them, probably the 1920's-dressed one, is a ghost. It's the second. There. That's the plot thread that has any resolution. You're welcome.
This is important, because the rest of the movie is going to make no sense trying to remember it's supposed to be people from the 1920's or I guess our lead's memory of that event? Whatever, the point is that they just talk like people in modern day, presumably not to give away the ... I hesitate to call it a twist, but sure. The only questions it being in the 1920's solves are why anyone is robbing a train at all and why no one has a cell phone for light when they go underwater later.
The train robbery takes ... a long time. It's about over by the midway point, if we're counting credits on the timer. What happens during it? Theoretically, something. Practically, nothing. After a little girl hallucinates once and our lead hallucinates twice, which will never be explained beyond "Ghosts?", the Dark World Just McElroy playing the train's host dies after an agonizingly long introduction to ... every character that's named, but none of the ones who are basically extras even though he pointed out cast members and passengers, we get a lot of hints at lady lead's tragic and horrific backstory (it sounds really interesting, which is why we never get to hear it!), it's unclear if this is part of the play or he really died, never technically get the answer. Guy who you expected to rob the train starts doing so. His girlfriend helps after a lot of very badly-written implication Generic Handsomeman was in on it, but now it's GONE TOO FAR! Secret girlfriend has a gun that in no way existed in 1922, but whatever, who cares.
They go off a cliff because Robberman kills the conductors, but vice versa as well. Everyone runs to the back car. This is the last we see of robber girlfriend, or, to be honest, a few other characters who just disappear wholesale from the movie. It will later be explained the whole trained crashed, but this is no way covers why it appears instead that just the back car breaks off. It's not impossible for both to happen, but the movie ignores the rest of the train from the SECOND the caboose's connector breaks, which is ... just really sloppy.
Everyone argues incessantly in a train car in the water. You think a monster is going to appear any second. It will not. It will not appear when it would be tense or surprising, you rube. You absolute child. No, it will only appear after something like a triple of a guy doing the worst job on Earth swimming to shore despite being a fit man in his late twenties/early thirties who clearly knows how to swim. Perspective is atrocious, they say land is at least 50 yards away, then he swims TEN FEET and can see LAND!
Whatever. Jesus. I can't care about that. I just can't. He dies after the THIRD time a monster attacks him in the water, by which point you are SO SURE he's going to die from a narrative perspective that it's just getting frustrating how much everyone's doing nothing and all the time it's taking him. Then his girlfriend dies, specifically by running into the water after a guy who got shot earlier and then got grabbed, and you have never wanted to yell "JUST RIP HER ARM OFF!" so bad about a completely innocent character, because again, it's incredibly clear, and they WILL. NOT. DO. IT. For a gratuitous amount of time.
Then everyone just swims to shore ANYWAY. Why. I'm not using a question mark, that's how I feel about that decision. No one does forever, then they do, and you know what? Everyone makes it to shore FINE. Though this does contan the greatest sins of the movie: the Latina nanny to the little girl jumps on the monster when it has our heroine, fights it off, rad as hell, but it looks like she was about to just snap its neck, and I would have given this thing film of the decade if they had just done that, AND everyone stands on shore for way longer than they should, I swear, it's like five minutes, just staring at the water. OF COURSE the monster kills one of them.
Then find a house! This being the 1920's and house phones in the middle of a dilapidated shack sitting deep in the woods being super-common, of course they look for a phone. I admit this is me nitpicking, but Jesus Christ, at least PRETEND to follow your conceit. Makeup salesman dies a pointless "let's split up," death, Handsomeman dies kind of horribly for basically no reason, and the little girl outright walks out and feeds herself to the monster because trauma, I guess? It's not shot well. Then there's a jump-scare of the monster out of NOWHERE to our lead, and is that where she really died? No idea!
Quick aside, when makeup guy dies, the monster, who has this nested mouth dealy, has the guy's head facing out of its mouth and looking at the other survivors before chompin' it. So either, it swallowed him like a snake (it ... looks adapted to rending and tearing, but I guess it's not impossible, it's a monster) OR, or, my favorite theory, it severed his head, waited when they were just about to raised the flashlight, then popped it in face-out for effect. Just a real dedicated showman.
Lead lady runs back to the train station, after a bewildering cut that suggests distance traveled then cuts back to the EXACT SAME SHOT as before, and no, not a wide, generic shot that would make sense. The lady from before (I think?) finds her, talks to her, does the worst job of calling for help in recorded history, and then she disappears in time for Lance Henriksen to not tell, but belabor the story. All we get is that a 1920's train from this station, the last car of which was dredged and recreated as a display there, crashed, no one knows why, everyone died, a woman with the name of the ghost lady lead was on it. Dark World Justin McElroy appears, and maybe he's a ghost? Or already was? Who knows, who cares, the movie end with lead lady stepping on the train as she becomes see-through.
Look, I get that the scene where the girl decides to die and lady lead says she's going to keep going no matter what is foreshadowing she's a ghost because she can't let go. But real quick, the implication is that she's stuck in a loop here, so aren't they all ghosts? Or is it just her? Is this the only time she's ever shown up here in this haunting? Why? Why 96 years, that's a weird amount of time to wait? Is her vaguely-hinted tragic backstory THAT SHE'S A GHOST? Because I think that's what they were going for, which is both hack and also directly implies the loop, so the ending moral since everyone who fights AND everyone who gives up dies and is trapped forever is "Eh, fight, don't fight, you're screwed either way."
You may note that while I mentioned the monster, I never explained literally anything about it. That's correct, because the movie doesn't, either. I'm not a literalist monster, I understand not every aspect of a movie monster needs to be explained, but give me something, ANYTHING except just everyone yelling "WHAT IS THAT THING?!" incessantly. Please. I know the characters don't know, but buddy, you did not close enough holes for me not to notice this one. If you had, it'd be fine, but with all the other loose ends, it's just one more than to drive you up the wall. My wife, while watching this, came up with TWO BETTER ENDINGS that I'm actually mad didn't happen, namely "she's the monster and also crazy, so she's killing everyone," or "the train station employees are in on it and are going to take her back to the monster or kill her." Would those have been great? Given the lack of foreshadowing, not really (though I think either was solid and the former honestly had some legs to stand on. my theory was there WAS no monster and she just killed them while externalizing her psychotic break, which is a good reason not to explain anything about the monster's origins or design), but it would have been TWO HUNDRED TIMES BETTER THAN THE REAL ENDING.
This movie has convinced me that all awards movies have are totally meaningless. Nothing in Hollywood matters or has a standard it's measured by. Life is absurd and horrible and we are all going to die.
In short, I can soundly say this movie did at least produce an emotional reaction in me!