BLU-RAY/DVD REVIEWS

003581Reviews & Counting
SEARCH BY TITLE # A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Prisoners
BLU-RAY disk
Jan 14, 2014 By: J.A. Hamilton
Prisoners order download
Director:
Denis Villeneuve

Actors:
Hugh Jackman
Jake Gyllenhaal
Terrence Howard

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

star Printer-Friendly version
comment
WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
When his little girl and her neighborhood friend go missing, a desperate father is willing to do anything and everything to find them before time runs out.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
There wasnt a lot of hype or advertising hovering around PRISONERS last year. Id actually overlooked the initial trailer, and then only watched the other one by accident because Id heard something about it via word of mouth. But when I did watch it I knew this would be something big, something huge. And it was. I saw this flick in theaters and was going to review it then, but didnt. As a father of a twenty-one month old daughter this film pushed buttons I didnt even know were there. So I waited, and let the film digest. Sitting down with it a second time was just as mesmerizing, emotional, and awe inspiring as my first viewing. PRISONERS was my favorite film of 2013, and is a true triumph to the thriller genre.

This story spoke to me not only as a father, but as a hard core moviegoer. The visuals and score are downright haunting, seeping their way under your skin almost immediately. Theres a foreboding sense of danger in the air that never seems to lift, and its this type of electricity that keeps your ass on edge from start to finish. I dig Keller (Jackman) as a character, but I could feel him as a fatherly figure. I could feel his desperation, and most importantly, his wrath. His whole survivalist angle is a little questionable, but his tenacity and iron will are legendary. Yes, it would be easy to think you heard the kid mumble something like they didnt cry until I left them, but the fact that he did hear something, and knew beyond the shadow of a doubt that something was off and was willing to do whatever it takes to get his daughter back was awesome. It make me think of the saying, How many men would you kill to save the ones you love? The answer? All of them.

The acting is what really elevates this film to the highest levels. Hugh Jackman is brilliant. If ever there was a doubt that this man deserves to be where his is (I know there isnt at this point, but just in case), this performance will put that to bed. There are so many great moments, but my favorite is when hes sitting in the car with Loki (Jake Gyllenhaal) talking about every minute wasted is a minute his daughters wondering why hes not there. That sentence doesnt do the scene justice by any stretch, but trust me, its powerful. Im also a huge Jake Gyllenhaal fan (DONNIE DARKO baby!), and he was on fire here too as the detective in charge. He owns every scene hes in, but I loved the smile on his face when he goes to the door of a dude hed chased down earlier, I wont get into it, but the scene itself is fantastic. The rest of the cast do their part, some good, some a bit wasted, but the acting is solid all around.

PRISONERS was my favorite flick of the year, but thats not to say there wasnt a couple faults worth mentioning. (SLIGHT SPOILERS) The whole red herring dude, who was abducted but let go, subplot was a little bumpy at best. It felt a little forced, and a little too well timed. The dead guy at the church was also similarly misplaced. I get the relevance, I get the idea, and I understand how it all plays together, but I just think it could have been a bit tighter. Also, Im not a hundred percent fond of the ending either. I liked it, but I didnt like the leave it to the imagination angle, nor do I like the idea of Keller going to jail if and when they find him. I get that he kidnapped someone, and/or tortured him for info, but he actually had info. He was part of it. I would think that in light of these off-the-wall circumstances, theyd be able to cut the guy some slack, but thats just me. Small grievances aside, this is still one hell of a ride you cant afford to miss.
THE EXTRAS
Behind the Scenes: PRISONERS Every Moment Matters: Mostly just parts of the trailer in a short three minute spurt. If you want real meat for you time, look up Jackmans interview where he explains the scene in the bathroom with the hammer.

Behind the Scenes: PRISONERS Powerful Performances: This is where the film shines, with Jackman and Gyllenhaal kicking ass and taking names. Terrence Howard was good, but sadly, Maria Bello was wasted. She had at least one cool scene/line when she confronts Jackman about being about to protect his family.

Previews: There are some trailers, as well as a DVD and Ultraviolet Copy of the film.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
Obviously this flick will hit you harder if you have kids, but that doesnt mean its not a dose of equally powerful whoop-ass if you dont. A cool story, phenomenal acting, and an edge of your seat pace are more than enough reasons to overlook its small flaws.
Strikeback
Not registered? Sign-up!
Or

+2
12:42PM on 01/14/2014
I think it's THE underrated movie of 2013! Cinema thriller at its best!
I think it's THE underrated movie of 2013! Cinema thriller at its best!
Your Reply:



11:25AM on 01/14/2014

Totally agree except..

The ending was not open to your imagination. Just because they did'nt show it, does'nt mean they did'nt imply it, and they did, it was actually matter of fact. But I do agree with you that, one character gets away scott free just because he's a little off, but the other is doomed to a long term prison sentence. It just doesn't make sense. But ,like you, I thought it was the best film of last year, even with it's flaws.
The ending was not open to your imagination. Just because they did'nt show it, does'nt mean they did'nt imply it, and they did, it was actually matter of fact. But I do agree with you that, one character gets away scott free just because he's a little off, but the other is doomed to a long term prison sentence. It just doesn't make sense. But ,like you, I thought it was the best film of last year, even with it's flaws.
Your Reply:



JoBlo's T-Shirt Shoppe | support our site... Wear Our Gear!