This film could have been titled “There Will Be Beef.”
It's commonplace these days to find movies in which the level of technical excellence is better than the material deserves. "Hells Angels on Wheels," for example wasn't much of a movie but the cinematography deserved an Oscar nomination.
"The Incident" is the other kind of movie. The photography is fuzzy, the characters are gold-plated stereotypes, the plot is obvious and advances automatically. But the movie works; it delivers the goods. It creates the suspense and fear it tries for.
Maybe that's because the subject matter -- violence on the subway --touches a responsive nerve right now. Society has always been pretty much divided up between those who are capable of sudden, senseless violence, and those who are not. This is a movie about what happens when the two types are pushed together and the outlaws terrorize the citizens. Sort of an urban Western.
The outlaws are two suitably tough hoods who roll a guy in an alley and then take the subway to Times Square. The citizens are average citizens indeed; they could have been chosen from old Gallup Polls to represent the various Official Man on the Street stereotypes.