Edge of Darkness
February 1, 2010
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Mel Gibson has finally returned. Let’s hope that he’s here to stay. Yes, he said some horrible things a few years back, but we all make mistakes. That said, Edge of Darkness fits easily among Mel’s other “action Mel” films(Ransom, We were Soldiers, the Lethal Weapons).
The film plays like a combination of modern noir and a spy thriller. The film follows Tom Craven (Gibson) as he picks up his daughter from the train station. Right away we see a distance between them. As he attempts to reconnect with his daughter Emma, she continually throws up and at one point, tries to tell him why. Unfortunately, she is shot on his front porch on the way to the hospital before she can see. Leaving Craven to uncover what happened himself. Emma being shot comes so quickly that the movie feels like it’ll keep this pace throughout. Wisely though, director Martin Campbell (GoldenEye, Casino Royale) chooses to have the movie slowly come to a boil.
Though this may turn off those expected fast paced movie fanatics, it works in the films favor. The slow boil makes everything so tense that when the action intermittently comes, we jump out of our seats. I loved the pacing, it had me looking around every corner trying to see what would happen next, but like all great detective stories, we only know what the protagonist knows. Making a passenger on Tom Craven’s quest to find his daughters killer and uncover why.
I’m a big Mel Gibson fan, so this was a total blast for me. The only hiccups were Ray Winstone’s sub-plot and Gibson’s somewhat inconsistent accent. In fact, Winstone’s character in general. A fascinating character that you can’t tell who side he’s on. But so complex that you feel that something is missing from him. Of course, when you turn a miniseries into a single 2 hr movie, things will be cut. But in its defense, the complexity and the ending and all it’s shortcomings only enrich the film. If you want to see a quality thinking man’s revenge film, this is one to consider. I plan on seeing it again once I’ve thought about it some deal. 3.5 out of 5 stars.