- 1 hr 36 min
Darkman is a science fiction, action-packed noir film directed and co-written by Sam Raimi. The film stars Liam Neeson, Frances McDormand, and Colin Friels, and it was originally released in 1990. The movie begins with Dr. Peyton Westlake (Neeson), a scientist who is working on a synthetic skin that can withstand extreme conditions, dating his girlfriend, Julie Hastings (McDormand). Things take a turn for the worse when a group of gangsters, sent by Durant (Larry Drake), a ruthless criminal boss who wants to take control of the city, break into Westlake's laboratory, destroy all his work, and leave him for dead. As it turns out, Westlake is still alive, but his face and body are destroyed beyond recognition. He then embarks on a quest for revenge against Durant and his henchmen, using his synthetic skin to disguise himself as anyone he wants. In other words, he becomes Darkman. Throughout the movie, we witness Darkman's struggle with his newfound identity and his desire for revenge. He knows that he can never go back to his old life, and he's plagued with memories of his past. At the same time, he's also driven by a sense of justice, and he refuses to let Durant and his gang get away with what they did to him and his girlfriend. One of the key elements of the movie is the relationship between Darkman and Julie. Even though he can never again see her face to face, he's still deeply in love with her, and he uses his synthetic skin to make himself look like her to get closer to her again. In one of the most touching scenes of the film, he even takes on the appearance of Julie's face when the couple is out on a date. The cinematography in Darkman is also noteworthy. Sam Raimi employs his trademark style, which is known for being dark, gritty, and heavily stylized. The camera work is dynamic, with plenty of close-ups, Dutch angles, and quick cuts to add tension to the scenes. The music, composed by Danny Elfman, also adds to the atmospheric and haunting vibe of the film. One of the strengths of Darkman is how it balances its tone. Despite its dark and often violent themes, the movie also has plenty of humor, making it a truly enjoyable experience. Liam Neeson's performance as Darkman is top-notch, and he brings a sense of melancholy and humanity to the character that makes us root for him even as he becomes more and more unhinged. But perhaps the most impressive aspect of Darkman is how it tackles issues of identity and loss. Westlake's struggle to come to terms with his new identity, and all the memories he's lost, is both moving and thought-provoking. Moreover, the film's exploration of how people react to those who are different or disfigured is still relevant today. Overall, Darkman is a highly entertaining and thought-provoking film that deserves to be seen by anyone who enjoys science fiction or action movies. With its great performances, dynamic visuals, and engaging storylines, it's a cult classic that still holds up more than 30 years later.