Mel is back in “Edge of Darkness”

Edge of Darkness
Mel Gibson plays a father with nothing to lose in the new revenge flick, "Edge of Darkness."

Rated R

Directed by Martin Campbell

Starring Mel Gibson, Ray Winstone, Danny Huston, Bojana Novakovic, Shawn Roberts

Heidi’s Illustrious Rating: 3.5/5

Word of Warning: Violence in the form of bloody gun shot wounds. Please, leave the little ones at home.

Love him or hate him, Mel Gibson is the best at making a good revenge movie, and “Edge of Darkness” does not disappoint on that count.

Gibson plays Boston police detective Thomas Craven. When Craven’s 24-year-old daughter (Bojana Novakovic) is unexpectedly gunned down, he begins a quest to find the killer. His investigation leads him deep into a conspiracy involving powerful and dangerous players.

It’s been nearly eight years since Gibson has stepped in front of the camera, and though he is starting to show his age, he can still play an effective bad ass. Personally, I think Gibson is at his best when he plays “a man with nothing to lose,” and Craven is just such a man.

Other revengeful characters from Gibson’s movie past include Porter in “Payback” (1999), Tom Mullen in “Ransom” (1996), and William Wallace in “Braveheart” (1995).

Director Martin Campbell also directed one of my all-time favorite Bond films, “Casino Royale.” Campbell is a New Zealander who has lived in Great Britain since 1966. “Edge of Darkness,” originally a novel, was made into a British television series in 1986, also directed by Campbell.  

“Edge of Darkness” is fairly predictable and there are plot holes, but it’s still a great deal of fun. The line between the good guys and the bad guys is clearly drawn, and Craven is unrepentantly out for blood. And the audience loves it because sometimes we just want to see the bad guy get his and get it good. We don’t want a moral discussion and we certainly don’t want apologies or forgiveness, we just want to see the good guys win.

In some ways, this movie is similar to “Taken” (2009), a film panned by critics, but loved by audiences. In “Taken” Liam Neeson plays a man with a “very particular set of skills,” and he has to put those abilities to use when his daughter is kidnapped.

If you’re in the mood for a classic revenge movie “Edge of Darkness” should satisfy.


  1. Good review. Sounds like a movie my stepdad would love. Don’t forget his slightly vengeful character in THE PATRIOT…but he had a family, so it wasn’t quite the same. Except when he axed that guy for killing his son.

    Do you think people won’t see the movie because of the past negative publicity surrounding Mel Gibson?


  2. I do think some people will “boycott” this movie because they don’t like good ol’ Mel. Personally, I think he’d be great fun to have a beer with. Except I think he’s gone through rehab and he’d have to drink O’Douls. 😉


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