Comes a Bright Day
Attractively shot but dramatically hollow British heist flick
Reminding us that all that glitters certainly isn’t gold, Comes a Bright Day dazzles superficially but is dramatically hollow. Simon Aboud’s debut as writer and director boasts a cross-generational cast of British talent, alongside immaculate interiors, beautiful cinematography (by John Lynch) and Paul Smith-designed outfits. It’s a romantic heist movie which sees an ordinary boy turn hero when an exclusive Mayfair jewellers is rocked by violence.
Sam Smith (Craig Roberts) is a high-end hotel dogsbody who’s taken hostage during the robbery of Clara, an antique jewellery store. With its wood panelling, gem-filled cabinets, grandiose painted orchids and Tiffany lamp it’s the epitome of elegance. Sam’s fellow captives are shop assistant Mary (Imogen Poots) – the object of his affection – and her boss Charlie (Timothy Spall). The armed robbers are the topically named Cameron and Clegg (Kevin McKidd and Josef Altin); they’re there to snatch the Stahl Papillon, a million pound diamond butterfly brooch, said to have been commissioned by Napoleon for his mistress.
As a thriller Comes a Bright Day is almost completely devoid of tension, and as a romance it lacks credibility. McKidd rages impotently, Spall maintains his dignity in the face of the mediocre material and Poots is respectably regal. All are ill-served by a script which reduces them to little more than dressing and fails to deliver a solitary surprise. The comedically gifted Craig Roberts – enchantingly odd in Submarine and TV’s Being Human – makes for a limp romantic lead and remains defiantly Welsh even though he’s playing a lad raised in Camden. Ultimately, Comes a Bright Day offers insufficient excitement and – like its incompetent robbers – once it battens down those hatches the film has nowhere to go.
Selected release from Fri 13 Jul.