Studio: Warner Bros. Pictures
Length: 117 Minutes
Rating: R for strong bloody violence and language.
Theatrical Release: January 29, 2009
Directed by: Martin Campbell
Written by: William Monahan & Andrew Bovell. Based upon the TV series written by Troy Kennedy Martin.
Mel Gibson - Craven
Ray Winstone - Jedburgh
Danny Huston - Jack Bennett
Bojana Novakovic - Emma Craven
Shawn Roberts - Burnham
Some secrets take us to the edge.
January 28, 2009
Grade: C (Rotten)
Edge of Darkness is a below-average thriller that is kicked up a notch by a stellar performance from Mel Gibson. Those expecting Taken 2, however, are going to be gravely disappointed. This is not the action movie you think youíve seen in the trailers. Some vigilante justice is served, but the film as whole gets bogged down with a very talky script, little-to-no action, and a convoluted plot involving an energy corporation cover-up, corrupt government, and nuclear weapons.
Gibson is Tom Craven, a hard-boiled Boston cop who, as the film opens, is welcoming home his daughter, Emma (Navakovic), for a visit. It doesnít take long for her to start bleeding from the nose and vomiting. Tom decides to take her to the hospital, and waiting on the other side of the front door is a masked man who guns down Emma. Boston PD begins their investigation under the assumption that Tom was the target, but Tom begins his own investigation and uncovers a much more startling truth.
The filmís setup is gripping, but the unraveling of the plot is not. This is fairly stock ďyou wonít believe what the government is doing behind your back!Ē stuff, right down to the obviously evil corporate exec (Huston) that ends his meeting with Gibson by asking how it feels to lose a child. Yikes. The action, what there is of it, is pretty by the books; save for possibly the most implausible vehicular homicide I have ever seen in a film. We all know itís only a matter of time until Crazy Mel gets going, and the third act doesnít disappoint. Itís just a slog getting there.
This is Gibsonís first big-screen role since 2003. Most are aware of his personal problems and the ugly remarks he made to an arresting officer back in 2006. My hunch is that most will accept him in this role. Gibson plays a determined father as well as anyone, and itís impossible not to get behind him here. Without him, this film would have been a big mess. The supporting cast is acceptable, though itís Ray Winstone as the man who serves as professional interference to the truth who has a real screen presence.
Edge of Darkness will tap into the more primal instincts of human nature. On that criterion alone the film works to a certain degree, but the more discerning viewer will want more than that and a recycled plot. Gibson makes his return with a role that he is comfortable with (think a slightly more violent Ransom), and he succeeds. The movie as a whole, however, probably should have stuck to the action and left the stock corrupt government storyline in the recycle bin.
May 20, 2013 - 8:31pm EDT
John Travolta and Kelly Preston are attached to star in Joe Johnston's biopic centering on notorious gangster John Gotti. [...]
May 20, 2013 - 8:09pm EDT
The actress will play Sarah, the wife of Zach Braff's character in this Kickstarter-funded indie comedy. [...]
May 20, 2013 - 7:33pm EDT
Megan Fox is seen alongside Alan Ritchson in his motion-capture suit on set of director Jonathan Liebesman's reboot. [...]
May 20, 2013 - 7:10pm EDT
Zack Snyder directs this highly-anticipated superhero reboot starring Henry Cavill as Jor-El's son, Kal-El. [...]
May 20, 2013 - 6:52pm EDT
Ryan Reynolds voices the title character, a snail whose dreams of being fast finally come true in this DreamWorks Animation comedy. [...]
May 20, 2013 - 6:09pm EDT
This action-thriller centers on a submarine captain who must work with a Navy SEAL team to rescue the Russian president. [...]
May 20, 2013 - 5:36pm EDT
Samuel L. Jackson leads a S.W.A.T. team in photos and video from the NYC based set of this Marvel adventure. [...]
May 20, 2013 - 5:15pm EDT
Peter Jackson and Ian McKellen are seen back on set as shooting continues for the final two chapters of this Tolkien trilogy. [...]
May 20, 2013 - 5:09pm EDT
Clive Owen and Mila Kunis star in director Guillaume Canet's crime thriller about two brothers on opposite sides of the law. [...]
May 20, 2013 - 4:33pm EDT
Korean director Chan-wook Park's revenge thriller is getting an English-language remake from Broken City writer Brian Tucker. [...]