The Cold Light of Day
The young American Will Shaw arrives in Spain to spend the holiday with the rest of his family (father, mother, brother and his girlfriend) on a boat but he’s not really looking forward to it. He doesn’t have much of a connection with his dad who works at the embassy and that he’s constantly hanging on the phone to keep track of what’s going on with his company that’s in financial difficulties isn’t helping the atmosphere much either. When he’s once again texting and as result of him not paying attention the girlfriend of his brother gets hurt, dad Martin goes berserk and throws Will’s Blackberry into the sea.
Will needs to calm down a bit so he swims to the shore to do some shopping in a nearby village, but when he returns he finds it completely deserted. The local police quickly is found to be not trustworthy en when Martin suddenly reappears Will finds out his dad wasn’t just the average embassy employee but a CIA agent and that if they want to see the rest of their family again, they need to return a briefcase Martin stole from the kidnappers a while ago. Nothing, however, is as it seems.
With Bruce Willis, Henry Cavill and Sigourney Weaver in the lead you can expect a spectacular action movie. At least, that’s what you would think. Nothing, however, is as it seems as The Cold Light of Day is as standard as can be. Willis pops by but equally quick disappears again which makes it clear he’s hired to bring some extra (dead) weight to the movie, Weaver acts on auto-pilot, and Cavill is as believable as the story. Completely not. Then you hope the director manages to make things better but Mabrouk El Mechri (JCVD) clearly didn’t dare to bring in any original elements so TCLOD quickly moves from an interesting setup (which seems to have come straight from Spy Kids) to a below average movie. Even with your brains completely turned off you still have to make an effort to remain interested and keep watching.
On the technical side we can’t complain, everything looks nice and only a bit of solarization disturbs the image. Qua sound we get a good mix that perfectly fits with the action on the screen and uses all channels well to support the atmosphere and tension. We also get some promotional interviews with cast & crew whereby it mostly gets noticed that Willis gets more screentime in the interviews than in the movie itself.