Edge of Darkness
Some secrets take us to the edge.
Leading man Mel Gibson returns from a PR-induced hiatus in Edge of Darkness, a thriller that sits comfortably alongside much of his ‘90s output. Adapted from the BBC miniseries of the same name, Gibson stars as Boston police detective John Kraven whose daughter is brutally gunned down on his doorstep by a masked assassin. Understandably peeved, Kraven unleashes all sorts of hell on those he deems responsible. Among them are sinister corporate heads, US senators and, in one rather fantastic scene, an environmental activist.
Reassembling his technical team from the universally acclaimed Bond-flick Casino Royale, director Martin Campbell, also of Goldeneye fame, does a solid job reconciling the conspiracy thriller elements with a more straightforward revenge narrative. Providing support is the perennially undervalued Danny Huston, and Ray Winstone in a role vacated by Robert DeNiro.
Make no mistake however, this is Gibson’s film. A careers-worth of screen kills tallied in his permanently furrowed brow, the movie marks the return of a true action veteran and it is testament to his appeal that he’s never anything less then entirely likable and engaging, despite his much-publicised struggles with alcohol and traffic cops. Indeed, there is much fun to be had in seeing how the film none too subtly addresses its star’s various personal problems; note his character’s penchant for non-alcoholic ginger-ale. “I know you don’t drink”, someone tells him without so much as a smirk.
In a movie that boasts several trigger happy set pieces and t-shirt worthy one-liners, it’s tremendously comforting to find that, even after all these years, nobody does frenzied bloodlust quite like Mel: “Fasten your f***ing seatbelt!”
Screenings of this film:
|2009/2010 Summer Term – (35mm)|