It’s Mel Gibson in a Death Wish movie that’s bamboozled itself into thinking it’s somehow important. This it achieves by working in the belief that festooning a largely transparent plot with enough obfuscating gimcrackery — especially involving evil corporations and corruption in government — will result in an inevitable degree of heaviosity. Fiddlesticks. The worst part is that when you strip Edge of Darkness of its basic revenge plot, what’s left is fairly tedious. Gibson stars as Thomas Craven, a Boston police detective with a very dodgy accent. The plot is set in motion when his daughter, Emma (Bojana Novakovic), pays him a visit — and keeps vomiting and bleeding from the nose, finally prompting her to decide that she needs a doctor. No sooner do they open the door to go in search of said medical advice than a voice cries out, “Craven!” and Emma is blasted back into the house. She tries to tell Dad something, but expires before she can. Everyone assumes that Craven was the intended victim — after all, police detectives have been known to make enemies — but was he? He doesn’t think so, and if you’ve seen the trailer, neither do you. All the rather plodding mystery builds to a not-very-shocking climax that exposes the rampant perfidy of an evil corporation and its even less shocking involvement with representatives of our very government. But fear not, it’s Craven — and Fox News! — to the rescue of our collective souls, informing the bad guys that they’d better decide if they’re hanging on the cross “or bangin’ in the nails.” Yes, indeed.
Director: Martin Campbell
Writer: William Monahan and Andrew Bovell
Producer: Tim Headington, Graham King and Michael Wearing
Cast: Danny Huston, Mel Gibson, Ray Winstone, Shawn Roberts, Peter Hermann, Denis O'Hare, Jay O. Sanders, Caterina Scorsone, Gbenga Akinnagbe and Bojana Novakovic