Review: Edge of Darkness

The trailers for Edge of Darkness are pretty misleading.  If you’re thinking you’re getting a revenge actioner in the vein of Taken you might be pretty dissapointed as it’s more of a crime/corporate thriller in the vein of Michael Clayton or The Pelican Brief.  I still found it to be a pretty enjoyable despite this.

Mel Gibson returns to the big screen for the first time since Signs as Detective Thomas Craven.  His daughter Emma is visiting him in Boston but a few hours after arriving she is killed on his doorstep by a masked assailant.  Craven is devastated and takes it upon himself to investigate her murder.  He finds that he might have bitten off more than he can chew as Emma seems to be involved in some sort of conspiracy involving her employer, North Moor, a government research company.

Gibson is fantastic in the role as you definitely feel his grief and anger.  He also rocks a pretty authentic Boston accent.  In the few scenes where he does kick ass he is still as good as ever.  Equally as good is Ray Winstone as North Moor’s “consultant” Jedburgh.  You’re never quite sure which side he’s on and what he’s capable of and it lends some terrific tension to his scenes with Gibson.

Like I mentioned above, I was going in expecting Mel Gibson’s take on Taken and was kind of disappointed when it wasn’t.  The plot is pretty interesting but it’s a little convoluted and, maybe I need to see it again, but you’re never 100% sure who did what.  The bad guys deserve what they get but it just didn’t completely work itself out for me.  Also, the ending was a little to artsy for me (you’ll know what I’m talking about if you see it)

Edge of Darkness is directed by Martin Campbell, who directed Casino Royale and the BBC miniseries the movie is based on.  The movie looks great and what action sequences there are work great and are pretty brutal.  I haven’t seen the original miniseries but I’m sure he had to compress the story down to two hours and I think it loses some clarity because of this.

Overall Edge of Darkness is an enjoyable thriller but don’t go in expecting non stop action.  If you like slower paced conspiracy/crime thrillers it’s definitely worth a rent or matinee and if you’re a fan of Gibson, he’s in top form.

3.5 out of 5

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