Movie Review: Edge of Darkness

For those of you who don't know I have a job that genuinely makes me happy on a regular basis and that's movie reviews for Botica's Bunch on Mix 94.5.

Basically I am asked to see movies and then paid to give my opinion.  Whacko!  How good is that?

So I thought I might publish some of my reviews now and again for your enjoyment.  Remember these are written to be read out not necessarily read online but if you know my voice then you will get the basic gist.

And without further ado, I present to you my review for Edge of Darkness:

Watch out everybody, Mel Gibson is on the loose and that means good news and bad news.  The bad news is that Mel’s in crazy mode where he’s seeing conspiracies everywhere felling like he’s the only good man in the world but the good news this time it is a character he’s playing in the movie Edge of Darkness.

Mel Gibson stars as Thomas Craven, a man who has spent years as a detective in Boston. When his own daughter is killed near the door of his home, Craven realizes that her death is only one piece of a puzzle filled with corruption and conspiracy, and it falls to him to discover who is behind the crime.

This is the new chapter in a genre of movies where over the hill A-list actors play angry fathers avenging daughters deaths.  It’s like they can’t get the pretty leading lady anymore (you know the old saying, “What’s a bit of wrinkle when you’re drunk?”) so now they have to kill everyone who can. 

Mel brings the old mania to the movie that he’s loved for, like he’s Riggs from Lethal Weapon with a pension plan and a shorter hair cut but do we really want to see Mad Mel running around and shooting people anymore?  You can’t help but wonder if Mel has any idea that the people he’s shooting are only in a movie.

Ah Mel.  What happened to him?  I used to love Mel but I fear he went over to America and never really came back.  It’s like he’s jumped the shark and gone into Tom Cruise world where, no matter how good their acting, you can’t help but sit back and think, “You’re a bit of a tool.”

The movie is ultra violent and contains a lot of themes that turn up in Gibson’s movies:  revenge, gratuitous violence, martyrdom and eventually “Hang on, I just went to a happy place and where am I”…oh no, I’m still in the movie.

There are some genuine thrills in the movie that will make you jump out of your seat but it is all a bit 80’s Charles Bronson Death Wish.  And it has an ending in the last scene that is so cheesy you will have an aversion to dairy for weeks.

There is a conspiracy that involves a corporation.  There’s a bad guy that you know is bad straight away because he has a tan that gives him the complexion of terracotta.  You feel like you could bend him over and put a flower in his bum and he’d look like the perfect pot plant.

Ray Winstone turns up and I’m still not entirely certain I know what he’s doing.  Heck, I’m not sure he’s certain but he’s a proper tough guy.  His character bonds so quickly over a couple of unrealistic scenes you wonder if maybe they fancy each other deep down because otherwise it makes no sense.

This was just a bit of whatever.  There are plenty of action movies out there that are a lot more enjoyable with actors I can still pretend may be ace dudes in real life.  This movie made me want to stand up in the cinema and cry, “You may take my money but you’ll never have my attention” and then moon the screen. 

I’m giving Edge of Darkness two over the hill Mad Mels out of five.

Justin Hamilton

February 15th, 2010

Croydon, Adelaide