In the Limitless pilot, when evading the police in the subway, Brian jumps on the tracks, calculates that there's an 80%-90% chance the train will stop on time if the driver sees him, and he kept standing there.

Once the train stops, he ducks under and crawls to an abandoned line.

Why would he not lie down right away, knowing there was a non-zero chance the train would hit him?

  • 1
    To add suspense to the moment for the viewers.
    – sanpaco
    Commented Oct 17, 2018 at 0:56
  • 1
    Isn't it obvious? Looking from in-universe story mode side, Brian has to think,calculate and process, After he finishes it, he knows what will happen. In first time in his life he's sure about a thing more than ever. He's proud about himself, self-gloating and everything. He wanted to see that everything happeneing as he thought it will.. Out of the story mode, from viewer's angle, It's because Brian being still in front of a train builds suspense, attracts viewer's attention(dude standing infront of a moving train with confidence and smile). So that's storyine building suspense and thrill
    – Vishwa
    Commented Oct 17, 2018 at 5:34
  • @Vishwa: no, it's not. See Matt's answer. Commented Oct 18, 2018 at 2:46
  • yeah, but it was the second pill (after he found his buddy was killed and stole his stash)... couldn't help myself
    – elbrant
    Commented Oct 18, 2018 at 21:10

1 Answer 1


He needs the train to stop

It isn't just to enhance the suspense for the audience. His brain on NZT is formulating an escape plan several steps ahead. He knows he can get to the abandoned line but he can't do that while the train is moving. And, he can't do that without the police seeing instantly where he is going if there is no train at all there.

So he isn't really taking a risk. He knows where the train will stop and he needs it to stop there to maximise the chances of getting away from the police unseen (or at worst delaying them while they work out what happened.)

This wouldn't work if he lay down and failed to stop the train. The brain on NZT is pretty smart.

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