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This psychological thriller is set on the Alaskan frontier, where a private plane carries wealthy intellectual Charles (Anthony Hopkins), his supermodel wife Mickey (Elle MacPherson), photographer Bob (Alec Baldwin) and photographer's assistant Stephen (Harold Perrineau) to a rugged cabin owned by the scarred and leathery Styles (L.Q. Jones). The team is on a mission to scout out awesome locations for shots of Mickey in a variety of outfits. Bob insists on taking a short flight to the cabin of an Indian, who, he explains, would make a perfect prototype for some photos. The aircraft is hit by a flock of large birds, forcing it to crash land in the remote wilderness, where it is unlikely to be discovered by any rescue party. They must live by their wits, facing starvation and, more imminently, a series of attacks by a Kodiak bear which prefers human meat to fish
. Tension builds as they confront their increasing - and equally dangerous - personal conflicts.

"Intelligent and gripping, The Edge combines action adventure with psychological drama in visually stunning locations. David Mamet’s perceptive, moving script is brought to life by Anthony Hopkins in a knock-out performance: his Charles is reserved, pragmatic and bright, but his achilles heel is the paranoia and vulnerability he carries, as a rich man. Did his gorgeous model wife (Elle MacPherson is surprisingly good) marry him for him or for his money? Hopkins’ consummate ability to manifest every little detail of this complex character is a delight to watch, as he puts to practical use all the theoretical knowledge he has acquired through reading his beloved books. A perfect counter-balance, Alec Baldwin is riveting as Bob, Charles’ rival - in self esteem and love. Their battle of wits, and Bob’s envy of Charles’ ability to think clearly, even through a crisis and use the situation to show his best qualities, is more than he can bear (pun intended). On a see-saw of human weakness and strength, the plank is far from balanced. The beauty and horror of the wild is a paradox, reflected not only in the surrounding wilderness, but also in the form of a massive brown bear, who initially looks like an ornamental pussy cat, but proves to be terrifying. Lee Tamahori’s direction is full of pace and anticipation, while Jerry Goldsmith’s magnificent spine-tingling score enhances Donald McAlpine’s cinematography in a thrilling, shocking, stimulating and moving film which demonstrates that ultimately, the brain is mightier than the sword."
Louise Keller

"When one sees a film written by David Mamet, we expect certain elements in common: groups of losers dissatisfied with their lives, earthy dialogue, claustrophobic environment and so on. So here we have The Edge, a wild, outdoor adventure thriller with doses of sardonic humour that is essentially a two-hander. Atypical Mamet? Certainly, and what he has come up with is an action thriller with intelligence, wit and wall-to-wall excitement, minus the usual Hollywood cliches. Originally called Bookworm, The Edge tells of what it takes to make someone transform. Hopkins' character is normally surrounded by wealth and knowledge through books, but this time he must survive, failing and succeeding in the process. At the same time, he's obsessed with the possibility that Bob has eyes for his wife and may want him dead. So what we have is an exciting outdoor adventure with a touch of Hitchcock, more than ably directed by New Zealand's Lee Tamahori. The film is stunning to look at, as Australian cinematographer Don McAlpine captures the breathtaking beauty and harsh landscape of this fascinating terrain. Jerry Goldsmith's music also creates the perfect atmosphere and the film's various stylistic moods and shifts. And, unlike so many genre films, Tamahori allows his actors room to move, and they consequently deliver exceptional performances. Whether or not movie audiences are ready to embrace an action film which is both exciting AND genuinely intelligent, remains to be seen, but this film certainly deserves the widest possible audience."
Paul Fischer

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CAST: Anthony Hopkins, Alec Baldwin, Elle MacPherson, Harold Perrineau, L.Q. Jones

PRODUCER: Art Linson

DIRECTOR: Lee Tamahori

SCRIPT: David Mamet


EDITOR: Neil Travis

MUSIC: Jerry Goldsmith


RUNNING TIME: 117 minutes



AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: February 19, 1998

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