REview: The Cold Light Of Day (12A)

Undated Film Still Handout from The Cold Light Of Day. See PA Feature FILM Film Reviews. Picture credit should read: PA Photo/Entertainment One UK. WARNING: This picture must only be used to accompany PA Feature FILM Film Reviews.

Undated Film Still Handout from The Cold Light Of Day. See PA Feature FILM Film Reviews. Picture credit should read: PA Photo/Entertainment One UK. WARNING: This picture must only be used to accompany PA Feature FILM Film Reviews.

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NEXT summer, Henry Cavill will be one of the biggest stars in Hollywood’s glittering firmament.

The ruggedly-handsome Jersey-born actor will take up the mantle from Christopher Reeve and slip into Superman’s distinctive blue and red spandex for Zack Snyder’s blockbuster Man Of Steel.

Cavill affirmed his action man credentials as Perseus in yesteryear swords and sandals romp Immortals – a triumph of brawn over brains that played up his impressive physique over the paucity of heartfelt emotion in his performance.

That woodenness in front of the camera is glaringly apparent in The Cold Light Of Day, a pedestrian spy thriller that casts itself in the mould of The Bourne Identity, but falls pitifully short on every count.

As the accidental hero at the centre of a deadly conspiracy, Cavill lumbers just like Mabrouk El Mechri’s film.

In sequences which call for him to run for his life, he lollops in an awkward fashion that suggests he has bet a member of crew that he can sprint with a walnut clamped between his thighs.

When he’s not huffing and puffing, Cavill delivers pivotal lines without any trace of feeling.

A tearful telephone call – “Mum, they killed him!” – might as well be a discussion about the weekly shopping list considering the absence of anguish in his face and voice.

Like a block of chiseled marble, he’s beautiful yet stone cold.

Business consultant Will Shaw (Cavill) joins his father Martin (Bruce Willis), mother Laurie (Caroline Goodall), younger brother Josh (Rafi Gavron) and his girlfriend Dara (Emma Hamilton) on board the family yacht in Spain the very same week that his company is threatened with bankruptcy.

The timing of the holiday couldn’t be worse and Will’s Blackberry continually trills and buzzes to the obvious irritation of Martin, who eventually throws the device overboard.

Will is apoplectic – as much as Cavill can convey – and he swims ashore to acquire a new phone.

When he returns, Will discovers his loved ones have been abducted.

A plea for help to local police exposes a dark family connection to feisty CIA agent Jean Carrack (Sigourney Weaver) and her henchman Gorman (Joseph Mawle).

With less than 24 hours to rescue his family, Will places his trust in a beautiful stranger called Lucia (Veronica Echegui) to guide him through Madrid’s teeming streets.

The Cold Light Of Day is an interminable bore, lacking suspense, solid performances or a coherent plot.

Continuity errors abound – Will’s swim bag has miraculous vanishing powers – and every role is woefully undernourished.

Car chases appear to be conducted within European speed limits, despite the best efforts of composer Lucas Vidal to crank up the tempo with his generic score.

“I’m getting sick of this!” growls Weaver’s character halfway throughout one protracted night-time set piece.

We echo her sentiments entirely, between yawns.