Peyton Westlake is a scientist who has discovered a way to produce synthetic skin. This could revolutionise skin grafting, except for one minor glitch; the synthetic skin degrades after 100 minutes of exposure to light. When gangsters attack Peyton, he is horrifically burnt, and assumed dead. In his quest for revenge, Peyton, aka the Darkman, is able to take on the appearance of anyone (using the synthetic skin,) but he only has 100 minutes per disguise. Written by
Look-wise, Sam Raimi was interested in paying homage to Universal horror films of the 1930s. Production designer Randy Ser remarked, "if you look at Darkman's lab that he moves into, which is an old warehouse, what was on my mind was Dr. Frankenstein. There were a number of references visually to what we were thinking about in regards to those films." See more »
Much of the helicopter chase scene is flipped horizontally. See more »
'Cause he's an asshole! Tell him no. Tell him no, too. Him, tell "fuck you." No, I'm gonna be here a minute. Got some guy coming up who thinks he's gonna muscle me out of my property. What's it matter! Just another tough guy, that's all.
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The opening credit sequence is full of dark clouds and brief images of Darkman. The second A in the title is shaped like Darkman's silhouette. See more »
Darkman is an innovative, fast-paced, fun super hero type film about a doctor trying to find the key to keeping artificial cells alive only to keep them going only in the dark. This scientist gets embroiled in a corrupt man's efforts to keep his corruption invisible and is left for dead by the henchmen of that corrupt man. While not a super hero in the classical sense, Darkman - the product of this science and burns covering almost every inch of his body - does avenge the wrongs done to him by using his machines, somehow still in perfect working order in his burned-out warehouse, to create any face he wants to wear. This device allows him to appear as other people and in some scenes we have the double appearance and spectators taking double takes with double vision. Sam Raimi shows us why he is so good with a movie like this by making us care about the character, wonderfully played by Liam Neeson, and keeping the pace nice and brisk. Which is good, because if you think too long about what is going on, you will know just how ridiculous the story really is. I cannot believe that all that scientific machinery was still in working order. The science is never fully explained. You are to take it at face value. I did, and the film was entertaining for that reason. Frances McDormand plays Neesom's girlfriend fairly well, and Larry Drake really chews up scenery as the primary henchman that has a penchant for cutting off the fingers of his adversaries. Raimi does substitute action scenes for coherent storytelling, but does so in such a manner as to still be somewhat convincing and as always entertaining.
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