The usual Nordic Noir garnishings of furrowed seriousness, chilly visuals and grim subject matter add a dash of flavour to this plodding crime procedural but still fail to enliven it. Grizzled Danish cop Nikolaj Lie Kaas, having messed up big-time on a previous assignment, is sent to the cold-case office to keep him safely behind a desk. Needless to say, there’s no way this misery-faced maverick is going to stick to paperwork. He’s soon off investigating the disappearance of a top female politician, allowing for some torture-porn-lite as we’re let in on her sufferings.
Furnishing Lie Kaas with a professional partner of Arabic extraction brings yet another layer of cliché to the film’s selection of stock elements. It’s all done with undeniable class – Mikkel Boe Folsgaard, the mad king from ‘A Royal Affair’, is especially strong as a brain-damaged key witness – but the impression is of a workaday TV pilot that’s wandered on to the big screen. Never less than professional, rarely more than functional.