The Edge (1997)

THE EDGE is an okay thriller about a billionaire bookworm (Anthony 
Hopkins) and a swinging-dick fashion photographer (Alec Baldwin) 
who, along with one of the hired help, get stranded sans provisions 
in the Alaskan wild, miles from their middle-of-nowhere lodging, 
where the rich man's model wife (Elle Macpherson, contributing to 
the local supply of timber) and the rest of their party is waiting.  
The catch?  Well, there are a couple.  First, the younger dude may 
or may not have dangerous designs on Mrs. Money Bags.  Second, that 
seemingly unassuming old guy is actually a fount of knowledge-- 
theoretical, at least-- on the subject of outdoor survival.  Third, 
it's bear season.  And, when one of those 1800-pound monsters gets 
a taste for human flesh, well, guess who gets eaten first. 

As directed by Lee Tamahori (MULHOLLAND FALLS, ONCE WERE WARRIORS), 
from a script by David Mamet of all people, THE EDGE doesn't have 
much of one.  The various elements, while admittedly intriguing, 
never gel into a compelling, cohesive whole.  Hopkins delivers a 
thoughtful performance, while his costar slogs through a much murk-
ier characterization.  What do these men *really* mean to each 
other?  Who knows, but they *do* get to engage in one whammo of a 
bear fight.  However unaffecting the first and final reels are-- 
did they have to reveal *all* of the survivalist secrets in those 
first few scenes?-- the big battle is probably worth the matinee 
price of admission.  I mean, when will you ever again get to see 
Hopkins, a live bear, and a handmade spear sharing the same frame?  
Breathtaking scenery, too.  (Rated "R"/118 min.)

Grade: C+

Copyright 1997 by Michael J. Legeros
Movie Hell is a trademark of Michael J. Legeros

Originally posted to triangle.movies in MOVIE HELL: Edgy

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