Night Hunter 2018 ****

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Henry Cavill is at something of a cross-roads right now; the substantially framed leading man did a great job in Mission Impossible; Fallout, and that offsets underwhelming outings as Superman and stale thrillers like The Cold Light of Day. In writer/director David Raymond’s thriller, he’s cast as Marshall, a cop in a quandary; he captures Simon (Brendan Fletcher) a paedophile who has locked up a girl at an unknown location. While a psychologist (Alexandra Daddario) attempts to get inside Simon’s head, Marshall has to balance the demands of his boss (Stanley Tucci) with the girl’s father (Ben Kingsley), who has previously used his daughter as bait to trap and castrate sex-offenders. Night Hunter’s plot has echoes of the final scenes of David Fincher’s Se7en, with the police scrambling to understand the complex machinations of a diseased mind; there are issues relating to mental health in the way that Simon is described, although a late twist changes the meaning of his behaviour. Night Hunter has a few issues of its own, with some of the scenes oddly edited and not always landing squarely. But Raymond has assembled a top-notch cast, all of who perform, with Tucci, Kinsley and particularly Daddario racking up the intensity. For Cavill, it’s a welcome change of pace to see him in a more human role that the usual supermen characters that his physique seems to inspire; he manages to ground the narrative, and helps make Night Hunter an absorbing, intense thriller.

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