Edge of Darkness


     Edge of Darkness marks the mainstream return of Oscar winner Mel Gibson. After his many tabloid disasters and rehab problems he returns to the kind of films he was making during the better part of the 1990’s. This film, from Martin Campbell who directed Casino Royale and The Mask of Zorro, looked a lot like the revenge thriller Taken with Mel Gibson when I saw the trailer. However besides the father factor they are vastly different and Edge of Darkness understands that viewers want up close and personal violence and that’s exactly what Campbell delivers. Gibson’s performance is similar to that of Paycheck or Ransom so nothing we haven’t seen before.

     Boston detective Thomas Craven (Gibson) was looking forward to spending a weekend with his 24 year old daughter Emma, but after her arrival she begins throwing up and reluctant to tell her father what’s wrong. Before she has the chance she is murdered as Thomas is trying to get her to the hospital. Filled with rage, confusion and questions Thomas begins opening doors that certain people want closed. He soon learns that his daughter was involved with a project dealing with national security and she was killed to protect their interests. Thomas will stop at nothing to find his daughter’s killer and finish the work his daughter died for.

     The movie understands that they have to suck the audience in from the beginning which is why they bypass too much character building and use the daughter’s violent and disturbing death to beg the audience to keep watching. The plot while old fashioned then turns into an investigate thriller that on the surface seems complicated and never ending but the film turns to a quick resolution to end the story. In some ways the script could be compared to Gibson’s film Conspiracy Theory just without the comedic undertones.

     Edge of Darkness relies heavily on the edge and little on the darkness, but it’s an entertaining thriller that uses emotion and the element of surprise to stay fresh. Gibson throughout his career has taken risks but this is a film and role that we would expect from him and will likely even win back some of his old fans. As fun as it might be to watch it as just as forgettable after the credits role.

     Final Thought – Nothing we haven’t seen before.

Grade B-

By: Dustin Chase W.

Editor: Jennifer Gih