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Edge of Darkness | 2010 | R | - 1.8.9

In this adaptation of a British television series, Mel Gibson stars as a Boston homicide detective whose daughter (Bojana Novakovic), a nuclear engineering intern, is murdered in connection with a secret project that may threaten national security. While searching for her assassin, he uncovers startling facts in Washington, D.C. that unravel dozens of clandestine operations. Also with Ray Winstone, Danny Huston, Shawn Roberts and Gbenga Akinnagbe. Directed by Martin Campbell. [1:55]

SEX/NUDITY 1 - A father tells his adult daughter, who has an upset stomach that she can tell him things; she smiles and says she is not pregnant. A man asks another man why he had dinner with a woman and says, "I think you wanted to have sex with her and to find out what information she had."
 A woman wears a tight, long-sleeved, low-cut top that reveals a slight amount of cleavage. The body of a dead woman, covered up to the upper chest by a white sheet, shows a bit of cleavage.


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VIOLENCE/GORE 8 - Throughout the film, many scenes contain handguns and shotguns, with numerous portrayals of bloody shootings, beatings, auto accidents, erratic car chases, and vehicular homicide. A few scenes depict CSI staff gathering samples from bloody furnishings and fingerprints from guns.
 A poisoned woman bleeds from the nose and vomits blood and green matter into an empty dinner plate: as she is helped to the front door, a drive-by shooter yells and shoots her with a loud shotgun shot, she lies in a pool of blood that soaks a throw rug, her entire abdomen is torn apart and gushing blood, and blood spatter is all around, while her father cradles her and screams and cries (later, we see a flashback of the shooting with even more blood than the original scene, including blood across the woman's chest and abdomen).
 A man is shown in his darkened apartment, kneeling with his hands cuffed behind his back, the right side of his forehead and the eye socket are missing and bloody red tissue hangs down from the head and covers his shirtless chest and part of the couch. We see crime scene photos of a bloody gunshot victim.
 A man pours contaminated milk into another man's mouth, and then shoots the man in the side and throat and we see large amounts of gushing blood. A man shoots another man in the chest, killing him and producing a large pool of blood. A man shoots another man several times in the knees and thighs, questions him, and shoots him in the head twice at close range. A man shoots another man in the chest and we see a spot of blood on his chest. A man shoots another man in the chest. A man says to another man, "You know you deserved it" and shoots him in the throat, producing large amounts of gushing blood. A man shoots and kills three men and we see large spots of blood on their chest and one man flips through the air as he dies. A young police officer shoots a man who collapses on his face -- we see no blood.
 Two men with guns drawn use a stun gun on the shoulder of another man, and we then see the man cuffed to a gurney in a dark boiler room; he breaks the bars of the gurney, grabs a gun from a person in a contamination suit and shoots that person in the head (we see a spot of blood on the person's head). A man shoots another man in the side and we see a little blood.
 We see a man sitting on a couch with a bullet hole in his temple, blood dried on his face and neck, and his eyes still open. In a river scene under a full moon, the bodies of three dead people bob up to the surface, face down.
 A woman tells a man that she may be killed for giving him information, and as she steps from a car, a speeding SUV runs her down, sending her into the air (we see her face and chest bloodied); the man shoots out the SUV windshield, which becomes red with blood, and the SUV crashes over an embankment and into a river and sinks.
 A man approaches an apartment where a man inside grabs a knife, he breaks the lock on the door, the two men fight with kicking, punching, and body throws, and smash furniture and appliances until one man is subdued. A man punches another man between the eyes, tosses him into a ravine and beats him up; we see that the man's mouth, teeth and hands are bloody.
 A man tackles another man, and pours irradiated milk down his throat. Three people are poisoned with radioactive material hidden in milk and begin to cough and progress to vomiting and stumbling. A man vomits into a kitchen sink three times -- we see only his back and hear retching. A poisoned woman pauses at an open car door and coughs toward the street, but we see no vomit.
 A man opens an urn at a beach and pours the ashes of his daughter into his hand and into the water; we see bone fragments in the gray ashes. CSI staff takes blood samples from a rug where a dead woman had been. After a shooting, a man is shown with the left side of his face streaked with blood and we see him washing his face, placing a bloody washcloth into a drinking glass, washing his bloody hands, and watching the bloody water go down the drain.
 Two men in an SUV chase a detective in his unmarked police car in a few scenes: In one scene the detectives escapes by speeding into a rest stop, kicking the block glass from a restroom window, jumping out, and driving off with his siren blaring; in another scene the detective loses them in traffic and in a third scene the detective backs into their SUV at a stoplight, orders them from the car at gunpoint, and uniformed policemen find automatic weapons in the SUV and arrest the men. A detective chases and pulls over a man's limousine at gunpoint, he punches out the driver's window knocking the driver unconscious, gets in the back seat, presses a gun to another man's throat and asks him, "How does it feel?"
 A detective pulls a gun and turns around to find a CIA agent sitting on a bench behind him; he does not shoot. A man with a large monkey wrench threatens another man. A large swat team breaks into an apartment and shout, looking for the resident.
 A man visits a doctor, who checks his eyes and tells him that he will suffer irritability and the man adds, "Hallucinations, disorientation and other symptoms" and we understand that the man is dying of an unknown disease. A doctor tells a man that a woman lost her legs and her parents are crying. A man is shown photos of four people who were murdered, drowned, shot or both; and is asked what he will do about illegal activity and the man questioning him says, "You better decide whether you're on the cross or pounding in the nails."
 A man asks another man "How does it feel [to lose a child]?" Several conversations between two or four men dressed in black include statements that a man is a threat to a nuclear arms project and his daughter was labeled a national security threat and murdered to protect the project. On a recorded message, a woman testifies about nuclear arms manufacture and says that if someone is watching this DVD, then she is already dead. A policeman tells a man that a killer is armed and dangerous to which he responds "Yeah? What do you think I am?" A man drives to work, hears an announcement about his daughter's murder on the radio and turns it off. A detective tells his captain that someone wanted to kill him and got his daughter instead. A man tells another man that a big corporation is watching him and will kill him.
 A man finds a Geiger counter in his deceased daughter's possessions and uses it to find radiation in a lock of her hair and a bottle of milk in his refrigerator. A handgun and badge are kept under a cake cover in a detective's kitchen and are shown several times. A man opens his deceased daughter's duffel bag and finds prescription bottles, energy drinks and a handgun.
 A man has hallucinations of his 5-year-old daughter several times, he hears her voice a few times, and sees a hallucination of her as an adult once.


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LANGUAGE 9 - About 42 F-words, 9 scatological references, 2 anatomical references, 4 mild obscenities, name-calling (crazy, anti-corporation, liberal, new age, tree-hugger, freaks, psychos, terrorists, threat, cop, Jihadist), 17 stereotypical references about women, mental health conditions, Boston, traditional families, the American government, Muslim nations, the police, the American justice system and corporate America, 3 religious profanities, 3 religious exclamations.


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SUBSTANCE USE - A bottle of milk is found to be contaminated with radiation and is later poured down the throat of a man by another man. A man swallows two prescription capsules with whiskey in a couple of scenes, we see four men drink whiskey, a man pours whiskey into two glasses and one man is shown drinking, a man sits on a bench by a river and drinks red wine, a man brings an 8-pack of beer into his apartment and drinks from one bottle, and a man states several times throughout the film that he drinks ginger ale and no alcohol. A man offers another man a cigar and when he declines the first man smokes it, and we see a an ashtray full of cigar butts. A man opens his daughter's luggage and finds two prescription bottles and two cans of energy drinks, and a man opens a kitchen cabinet that is filled with bottles of prescription medicines and vitamins.


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DISCUSSION TOPICS - Nuclear weapons, international crimes, politics, Jihad, government corruption, police corruption, guns, murder, mental illness, love, relationships, families, religion and an afterlife, death of loved ones.

MESSAGE - A child's death can drive a man to committing extreme violence. Heroes do the right thing.

CAVEATS

Be aware that while we do our best to avoid spoilers it is impossible to disguise all details and some may reveal crucial plot elements.

We've gone through several editorial changes since we started covering films in 1992 and older reviews are not as complete & accurate as recent ones; we plan to revisit and correct older reviews as resources and time permits.

Our ratings and reviews are based on the theatrically-released versions of films; on video there are often Unrated, Special, Director's Cut or Extended versions, (usually accurately labelled but sometimes mislabeled) released that contain additional content, which we did not review.


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