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Published on February 13th, 2010 | by simeon

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The Edge of Darkness

Mel Gibson is back on the screen in the winter thriller “Edge of Darkness”. Boston cop Thomas Craven (Gibson) is excited about his daughter Emma’s (Bojana Novakovic) visit home from her first post college employment position. Yet from the very start something seems wrong. Before dinner is even served a masked assailant kills Emma in cold blood on the porch of her father’s house leaving Officer Craven determined to figure out who killed his daughter and why which requires Craven to do this with or without the help of the law.

This is not a mystery but rather the story of a cop’s determination to avenge his daughter against impossible odds which are stacked with numerous shady characters that Craven must deal with to solve the murder, including senators, businessmen, and one title-less problem solver. Moreover, the flick walks directly into the muddy waters of morality, the law, business, and politics.

Tightly packed with characters, “Edge of Darkness” leaves little room for character development, thereby loosing much of the emotional response it seeks to create. However, the standout performance by Ray Winstone, who plays the insightful but questionably aligned Jedburgh, did lighten what otherwise is a dark and densely packed tale.
Further frustrating the viewer, the film’s ending is expected and not at all as dramatic as the buildup demanded. I left wondering why Gibson would remake the original award winning BBC-miniseries into a boring film that is ripe with undeveloped characters.

This thriller lacks the inventiveness or conclusion to make it worthy of Mel Gibson’s return. There were a couple of mildly tense moments and few well executed scenes but overall “Edge of Darkness” is really more of a substandard drama than an engaging thriller. The 117 minutes spent watching the “Edge of Darkness” was slightly enjoyable, but the story really is nothing new.

2.5/5


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