The body of 16-year-old Laura is found, wrapped in plastic, half buried under a bush in a desolate-looking park on the outskirts of a Munich suburb. Inspector Elisabeth Eyckhoff (Verena Altenberger) captures her first impression of the crime scene as a voice recording on her smartphone.
Then she looks at a concrete sculpture sprayed with graffiti – and a red climbing frame. But is the scaffolding really there? Is it just imagination? Or memory? The inspector seems to notice something that the audience does not understand at first. The scene is a lesson in how to create tension without words. The intense look into the faces of the characters is one of the most frequently used stylistic devices in the “Police Call” episode “The Light That the Dead See”. In addition to Altenberger, this time with a short hairstyle, two other female faces characterize the film.
Stefanie (Zoë Valks), a blond young woman with a nose piercing, never smiles, roams through the high-rise complex on roller skates, takes care of her always panic-stricken boyfriend Patrick (Aniol Kirberg) and sells drugs. Caroline Ludwig (Anna Grisebach) is the mother of a girl who disappeared two years ago.
At the beginning she is seen standing on the edge of the “Ice Dance Palace” while admiring the pirouettes of a talented figure skater. The runner is Laura, who is murdered soon after. Caroline Ludwig’s daughter Anne (Emily Heidenreich) looked strikingly like her.
The suburban drama impresses with its close proximity to the characters and an atmospherically dense narrative style. The ice surface in the “Eistance Palace” is a glaringly lit island in a cold, gloomy high-rise world. When Stefanie and Patrick meet up with friends, they hang out somewhere on a parking deck. And the mess in their apartment corresponds to the inner chaos of these two unstable figures.
Why the screenplay by Sebastian Brauneis and Roderick Warich pays so much attention to the young couple remains unclear for the time being. However, the crime film does not become a social study of young people addicted to drugs. After the body is found, Caroline Ludwig reports to the police – assuming that the dead person is her daughter. Because it was never found.
Recordings from a surveillance camera show that Anne boarded a long-distance bus to Italy two years ago. Since then, however, there has been no trace of her. Because she was a similar type to Laura and often skated in the same rink, Commissioner Eyckhoff also believes it is possible that both girls were victims of the same perpetrator. But Caroline Ludwig soon becomes a suspect herself. A cellphone video of her with Laura surfaced. In addition, her ex-husband Martin (Miguel Abrantes Ostrowski) accuses her of abusing their own daughter.
The case brings the qualities of the main character to bear once again: In the interviews, Commissioner Eyckhoff proves to be sensitive and devoted to people. Criminological fact-mongering has its place; but the Eyckhoff series is all about exploring human relationships and finding out the motives behind the characters’ actions.
Right at the beginning of the film, the inspector talks about how she sees her job when a group of students ask her about it. One sees and hears a reflective policewoman who also demonstrates an attitude towards her old and new colleague Dennis Eden (Stephan Zinner).
It is true that she develops a collegial relationship with Eden, despite some differences of opinion. However, this “Bessie” Eyckhoff is not a pronounced team player. Nothing is known about her private life either. The sensitive inspector prefers not to reveal more than hints in half-sentences about herself – a trait that only makes her more interesting.