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The Cold Light of Day (2012 film)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Cold Light Of Day
The Cold Light of Day.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byMabrouk El Mechri
Produced by
Written by
Music byLucas Vidal
CinematographyRemi Adefarasin
Edited byValerio Bonelli
Distributed by
Release date
  • April 4, 2012 (2012-04-04) (Spain)
  • September 7, 2012 (2012-09-07) (United States)
Running time
93 minutes
  • United States
  • Spain
Budget$20 million[1]
Box office$25.4 million[2]

The Cold Light of Day is a 2012 American action thriller film directed by Mabrouk El Mechri and distributed by Summit Entertainment.[3] It was written by Scott Wiper and John Petro and stars Henry Cavill, Bruce Willis, and Sigourney Weaver. Its story follows Will (Cavill), who finds that his family has been kidnapped by foreign agents who are searching for a briefcase stolen by his father (Willis), which forces him to take matters into his own hands to find them.

The film was produced by Intrepid Pictures and was released on September 7, 2012. It grossed $1.8 million in its opening weekend and $25.4 million worldwide, against a budget of $20 million, making it a box-office bomb.[4] It received negative reviews and has a 4% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes.[5]


Will Shaw (Henry Cavill) owns a consultancy business in San Francisco about to go into insolvency, reluctantly visiting his family in Spain for a holiday. He is met there by his father, Martin Shaw (Bruce Willis), an advisor for the U.S. government, with whom he has a tense relationship. Will's preoccupation with his phone results in a sailing accident where Will leaps to save his brother's (Rafi Gavron) girlfriend Dara (Emma Hamilton) from being hit by the yacht's boom but she hits her head on a winch. Martin grabs Will's phone and throws it into the ocean. Will swims to town to fetch medical supplies and to cool down. When he returns, the yacht had moved and can no longer find his family inside. Will goes to the police and they lead him to Zahir (Roschdy Zem), who knows where Will's family is. Will senses something is amiss, and attempts to escape in a police car. Martin appears, and aids Will by beating the officers.

Martin reveals he is a CIA agent, and that the people who kidnapped their family are after a briefcase he had taken on an assignment. Martin meets his CIA team leader Jean Carrack (Sigourney Weaver) in Madrid, who claims she no longer has the briefcase, but he knows she is lying. As Martin returns to his car, he is sniped and killed by Gorman (Joseph Mawle). Will retrieves Martin's phone as Gorman starts shooting at him and gives chase. As Will escapes, he takes a call from the kidnappers, who want to speak to "Tom", providing a 21 hour deadline and a meeting point to exchange the briefcase for his family.

Receiving no help from the US embassy, Will is picked up by Carrack in a car outside, but he realizes she is untrustworthy. Will feigns illness and Carrack, disgusted by the thought of Will vomitting in her car, has the car pulled over and Will gets away. Will arranges a meeting with his father's friend Diego at his office and meets receptionist Lucia Caldera (Verónica Echegui), Diego's niece, where he fights off one of Carrack's men. The pair go to Diego's apartment, but he was killed by Carrack and Gorman. Will and Lucia escape across the rooftops, but Will is shot. Lucia takes him to a nightclub, to a friend who has medical experience who cauterizes the wound. Lucia informs Will that "Tom" is Martin's alias in Spain, and she is Will's half-sister, being Martin's daughter by another woman. As Will arrives at the meeting point, he is grabbed and tortured for his father's whereabouts by the kidnappers, actually Israeli Mossad agents lead by Zahir, who was using the briefcase to lure a traitor when Martin stole it from them. They realize Carrack framed Martin and she has the briefcase, so they want Will to lure her out. Will briefly sees his family before Zahir releases him.

Will meets Lucia at the nightclub, where she starts a tab on Carrack's credit card. Gorman appears and is subdued by bouncers at the nightclub and tortured for information but he refuses to budge. Will lets Gorman escape so he can follow him, leading them to Carrack, who tries to sell the briefcase in an underground car park. Zahir's men surround the deal but give away their position, so Carrack and Gorman open fire on their own buyers before starting to attack and escape from Mossad, during which Lucia hit (the already shot) Gorman in a car crash who dies, enraging Carrack as she flees. Will and Lucia pursue Carrack through Madrid, with Carrack causing death and destruction along the way, indiscriminately, until eventually their cars collide and Lucia is seriously injured. Just as Carrack is about to shoot Will, she is killed by Zahir with a sniper rifle, who retrieves the briefcase and releases Will's family. Lucia recovers in the hospital with her new half family as Will looks on at his new expanded family. Will is offered a job in the CIA; whether he accepts is left unresolved.



The film was shot in Spain, including at Teulada-Moraira and Xàbia on the Costa Blanca. It was released on April 6, 2012 in the United Kingdom and September 7, 2012 in the United States.


The film was panned by reviewers and holds a 4% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, based on 45 reviews, with an average rating of 2.7/10.[6] On Metacritic, the film has a score of 22 out of 100 from 10 critics, indicating "generally unfavorable reviews".[7] Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "D+" on an A+ to F scale.[8] The New York Times described the film as a "thoroughly incompetent 'Bourne' movie imitation".[9]


  1. ^ Kaufman, Amy (September 6, 2012). "'The Possession' to scare off Bradley Cooper on slow weekend". Retrieved August 20, 2013. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. ^ "'The Cold Light of Day' (2012)". The Numbers. Retrieved May 7, 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  3. ^ Gant, Charles (April 9, 2012). "The Cold Light of Day". Variety. Retrieved May 29, 2020.
  4. ^ "The Cold Light of Day". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved February 14, 2020.
  5. ^ The Cold Light of Day (2012), retrieved February 14, 2020
  6. ^ "The Cold Light of Day (2012)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved July 7, 2020. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  7. ^ "The Cold Light of Day Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved February 15, 2018. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  8. ^ "CinemaScore".
  9. ^ Holden, Stephen (2014). "The Cold Light of Day (2012)". Movies & TV Dept. The New York Times. Baseline & All Movie Guide. Archived from the original on August 31, 2014. Retrieved August 31, 2014. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)

External links

This page was last edited on 14 April 2021, at 00:48
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