Edge of Darkness

2010-05-06 17:08
 
Edge of Darkness

It’s been a while since Mel Gibson starred in anything memorable, or rather in anything at all for that matter (almost eight years!).  And yes he’s not the same Lethal Weapon hunk as he was in the eighties, but luckily, he proves that he’s still got it in this crime revenge thriller.

What it’s about:

Veteran Boston detective Thomas Craven (Mel Gibson) receives a phone call from his career-driven 24-year-old daughter, Emma (Bojana Novakovic): she’s coming to visit. Their reunion turns tragic when Emma is shot by a faceless thug and dies in her father's arms. Grief-stricken, Thomas sets out to find Emma’s killer which delivers conspiracy after conspiracy as he unravels the secrets of his activist daughter’s private and professional life.

What we thought:

Directed by Martin Campbell, the man revered for re-energising the Bond franchise with Casino Royale, Edge of Darkness is an adaptation of the 1985 BBC television miniseries which Campbell and producer Michael Wearing also helmed. Living up to his reputation, Campbell succeeds in producing a nail-biting thriller that keeps you on the edge of your seat guessing. Although some of the story is predictable (the trailer gives away too much!), Campbell manages to throw you off track with unpredictable twists. Don’t worry, I won’t give it away! You probably know too much about the movie already.

Appearing in front of the camera for the first time in almost eight years, Mel Gibson portrays this almost too familiar role convincingly with more depth than the mere revengeful father out on a killing spree. Or his Martin Riggs character in the Lethal Weapon movies for that matter. Maybe it has something to do with age, but whatever it is, it's a tailor-made role.

While this is a revenge-action movie, it also manages to wrench very real emotion from its pivotal scene in which Craven experiences one of the worst things a parent could. It's really one of the most convincing scenes I’ve ever seen; capturing Craven's raw emotion and unimaginable shock and anguish. Not that anyone would know what his or her reaction would be except if you’ve been through something as traumatic as this, but I’m guessing this is close enough.

Investigating Emma’s death, the police believe that Craven was the actual target and not his daughter. While the police are trying to find a possible enemy of Thomas in old police case files, Thomas conducts his own little private investigation on the side. His search leads him to Northmoor, the company his daughter worked for, where he meets the very suspicious boss, Jack Bennett, played by Danny Huston who could’ve done a bit more in this villainous role.

While in his backyard one night, burning his daughter’s belongings, Craven receives a visit from Jedburgh, a security 'consultant' for Northmoor. Ray Winstone, known for his role as Mr. French in The Departed, plays Jedburgh with a dry humourous warmth even though he is a cold-blooded killer. Jedburgh is sent by Northmoor to stop Craven’s investigation and if he doesn’t want to cooperate, to kill him. Instead, Jedburgh and Craven find a liking in each other which results in Jedburgh allowing Craven to continue his investigation and even helping him. Their relationship becomes a focal point in the film.

As the truth begins to reveal itself, Craven gets to have his angry revenge in true Mel Gibson style: skop, skiet en donner.

So, this movie is a definite must see, whether you’re a Mel Gibson fan or just an action-revenge junkie. It’s as they say: Revenge is a dish best served cold.


Mel Gibson returns from an eight-year break, playing a veteran detective who investigates the conspiracy surrounding his daughter's death.

PRESHEN GOVENDER 2010/05/10 7:49 AM
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payback a bitch
pierre andre swart 2010/09/30 5:51 PM
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hi
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