We already have this. The human eye can see some mighty wide dynamic ranges. That's why scenes can look beautiful, but when we snap a picture, we find the picture is heavily saturated. The dynamic range of the human eye is about 10-14 fstops, or a ratio of about 1,000,000:1. The equivalent level of sensitivity for touch would be being able to lift a car, and then be aware of a feather dropping on top of it!
General purpose dynamic range is very difficult to attain, because you need a very sensitive sensor and a very wide bandwidth channel for the data. Typically animals adapt to the sorts of high dynamic range scenes they expect to need to operate in. One major example of this is the need to be able to see a bright sunlit field and yet still see things resting in the shadows. To support this, human eyes (and all eyes that I am aware of) have a highpass filter built into the retina. As a photo receptor is hit by light, it inhibits nearby receptors so our retina really shows the difference in light across the scene. The brain then stitches this together. You can see this effect by staring directly at a point without letting your eye move. Eventually your entire vision will turn grey as your brain loses track of the overall lightness of the image. In fact, your eyes undergo a small jitter on a regular basis, simply to refresh the image that you were staring at! Eyes are marvelous things.
Another approach would be occlusion. This is actually used on some of our telescopes to blot out a bright star to explore for dim stars or exoplanets around it. In this case, the telescope designers knew that there would generally be one circular bright object and a bunch of dim stuff around it, so they put a physical barrier to occlude the bright star's light from reaching the sensor.
You could do similar if our optic nerve had a reverse path back to the retina that we could use. Your brain could "paint" an occlusion by sending signals to parts of the retina to attenuate themselves. Of course, this would only work in scenes where the brain could accurately predict which areas of the retina needed occluding, but it wouldn't be hard to develop a scenario where your flashlight holding example was realistic.