Darkman is a 1990 American superhero film directed and co-written by Sam Raimi. It is based on a short story Raimi wrote that paid homage to Universal's horror films of the 1930s. The film stars Liam Neeson as Peyton Westlake, a scientist who is brutally attacked, disfigured and left for dead by a ruthless mobster, Robert Durant, after his girlfriend, an attorney, runs afoul of a corrupt developer. After a failed treatment to cure him of his burn injuries, Westlake develops super-human abilities, which also has the unintended side-effect of rendering him mentally unstable and borderline psychotic. Consumed with vengeance, he decides to hunt down the men responsible for his disfigurement.