The Cold Light of Day (1995)

Genres - Thriller  |   Sub-Genres - Psychological Thriller, Police Detective Film  |   Run Time - 107 min.  |   Countries - Germany, Netherlands, UK  |  
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The naked body of a murdered little girl is found in a forest surrounding a small Eastern European town. It's the third case in a row, and local police detective Victor Marek (Richard E. Grant) is on the killer's trail, but his superior, Novak (James Laurenson), needs to solve the crime quickly in order to boost his political career. So he arrests some suspicious hippie who later hangs himself in a prison cell. Though Marek is ordered to close the case, he continues to work on it on his own. He rents an old gas station and a house in the area where the murders took place. Working from a drawing done by one of the murdered girls he tries to find the clues for the identity of the killer. Marek becomes so obsessed with his quest that when he meets Milena (Lynsey Baxter), a single young woman with a little daughter (Perdita Weeks), he does not hesitate to use the child as the bait for the criminal. Though the film plot bears a strong resemblance to Sean Penn's movie The Pledge, it is actually a remake of the 1958 German film It Happened in Broad Daylight, scripted by Swiss writer Friedrich Dürrenmatt, who later reworked his original screenplay into the novel The Pledge.