The Cold Light of Day
Running Time: 93 minutes
Starring: Bruce Willis, Henry Cavill, Sigourney Weaver
Directed By: Mabrouk El Mechri
Rating: 3 out of 10
A man’s family is kidnapped while vacationing in Spain and he has only one day to try and save their lives.
There is nothing like a film that keeps you riveted to the edge of your seat. A film so awesome you don’t want to blink in fear of missing something amazing. Picture the exact opposite of that and you will get this movie. I hadn’t even heard of this movie until a week ago and now I am wishing I still hadn’t. The Cold Light of Day is the story about Will who is a young entrepreneur. He is vacationing in Spain when his family suddenly disappears and it is up to him to find out why.
I cannot express to you how thoroughly bad this movie is. It uses the same formula as the movie Taken but does not execute anything well in the slightest. Instead of Will having a particular set of skills he has no skills. The movie starts off with the introduction to Will and his family as they vacation in beautiful Spain. I liked the location for this story as Spain is an unusual spot for a thriller like this to take place. Usually movies where characters are running for their lives take place in major cities like New York or Los Angeles. So seeing beautiful styled buildings as Will runs for his life is a refreshing change. The movie doesn’t get going until Will’s family is taken and this is where the movie just doesn’t get it right at all. Will is stuck in a tight spot (Said like George Clooney from O Brother, Where Art Thou?). At the end of the day though, he is basically a kid running from professional killers and hired hit men. What starts off with a very unbelievable scene where Will narrowly escapes being shot escalates into a movie where that is the sole premise. Will runs and drives through the city at random firing a gun he has no practice with and takes on a multitude of bad guys. Will fires at the bad guys and the bad guy’s fire at Will, all with the precision of a drunken male teen peeing at a dorm toilet.
The lead Will played by Henry Cavill was below average in his performance. He runs through Spain like a mad man and does not get the viewer to care remotely about his predicament. I am not saying he won’t be a good Superman (Man of Steel 2013) but it is just a disappointing lead up to that film.
Bruce Willis plays Will’s dad Martin and he dialed in this role adding nothing but a celebrity name to this movie. A family friend Carrack played by Sigourney Weaver also seems to be in this film just for another name. Her performance is neither convincing nor fun to watch. All in all most of the characters in this film just go through the motions as they say their lines.
As the film carries along the viewer is treated to car chase scenes that are choppy and over edited. There are lots of gun fights where everyone seems to get hit but Will. The guns themselves seem to have unlimited ammo, and when the film does slow down the story is so broken and unbelievable it cannot be enjoyed. In a city where Will knows no one and doesn’t speak the language he gets around surprisingly well. Random encounters where people help him with no questions asked and also characters that make stupid non plausible decisions just adds to the chaos which is this movie. When the movie comes to its end you realize that it was basically an hour and a half of Will running around Spain like a chicken with his head cut off. You will not care for the story, you will not care if Will survives, you will not care if he saves his family, and finally you will not care to watch another thriller for a long time. With so many great movies of this ilk out there I found this film plain and quite frankly pointless.
Director Mabrouk El Mechri put together a very puzzling film. His camera work is spotty. His casting is made for household names instead of the right fit for the role. The action is choppy and uneventful. The story is rife with contrived plot and stupid characters. Lastly the films pace is way too frantic to be enjoyed. He failed basically across the board on this film except for having it based in Spain.
I cannot recommend this film for many reasons but mainly because the worlds next superman is boring as hell as an action star.
T Factor + If you like movies where the protagonist is on the run for his life than this could score higher on the rating scale.
T Factor – If you have seen lots of thriller movies before than this could score lower on the rating scale.
If you liked this film reel recommendations: Taken, The Fugitive.