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74

Generally favorable reviews - based on 46 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.2

Universal acclaim- based on 553 Ratings

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  • Starring: , , ,
  • Summary: How far would you go to protect your family? Keller Dover is facing every parent's worst nightmare. His six-year-old daughter, Anna, is missing, together with her young friend, Joy, and as minutes turn to hours, panic sets in. The only lead is a dilapidated RV that had earlier been parked onHow far would you go to protect your family? Keller Dover is facing every parent's worst nightmare. His six-year-old daughter, Anna, is missing, together with her young friend, Joy, and as minutes turn to hours, panic sets in. The only lead is a dilapidated RV that had earlier been parked on their street. Heading the investigation, Detective Loki arrests its driver, Alex Jones, but a lack of evidence forces his release. As the police pursue multiple leads and pressure mounts, knowing his child's life is at stake the frantic Dover decides he has no choice but to take matters into his own hands. But just how far will this desperate father go to protect his family? Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 36 out of 46
  2. Negative: 1 out of 46
  1. Reviewed by: Betsy Sharkey
    Sep 19, 2013
    100
    Exciting, terrifying, worrisome stuff saturates every second of Prisoners, holding you captive, keeping you guessing until the bitter end.
  2. Reviewed by: Rodrigo Perez
    Aug 31, 2013
    91
    The picture is often graphic and pulls no punches in its disturbing violence, but its unflinching nature gives it a memorable sear that won't soon be forgotten.
  3. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    Sep 19, 2013
    88
    Prisoners is infused with a poetic intensity that's rare in American thrillers. The closest cinematic comparisons would be "Zodiac," "In the Bedroom" and "Mystic River."
  4. Reviewed by: Peter Hartlaub
    Sep 19, 2013
    75
    It's difficult to remember a recent movie that soared so high, before plummeting with a series of bad story choices. But the end result is still a strong piece of cinema, a failure only if you dwell on what might have been.
  5. Reviewed by: Andrew O'Hehir
    Sep 19, 2013
    70
    Don’t get me wrong, I like trash just fine, and the twisty-loo, triple-abduction plot of Prisoners certainly kept me watching to the end. (You’ll figure out some of screenwriter Aaron Guzikowski’s plot twists, but not all of them.) It’s the imitation-David Fincher pretentiousness that gets on my nerves.
  6. Reviewed by: Sheila O'Malley
    Sep 20, 2013
    63
    Aspects of Prisoners are effective, but for the most part it's rather ridiculous (despite the fact that it clearly wants to be taken super-seriously), and there's an overwrought quality to much of the acting.
  7. Reviewed by: Joe Williams
    Sep 19, 2013
    38
    It’s preposterous schlock masquerading as art.

See all 46 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 10 out of 135
  1. Apr 26, 2014
    10
    Literally the best movie I have seen all year. Extremely well made, with heaps of plot twists and exciting visuals. Will definitely have youLiterally the best movie I have seen all year. Extremely well made, with heaps of plot twists and exciting visuals. Will definitely have you biting your nails!! Beautifully produced, loved every second of it. MUST WATCH THIS FILM!!!!! Expand
  2. Sep 20, 2013
    10
    Prisoners is a deep dark film, with a first rate cinematography, breathtaking performances, riveting editing, incredible dialog, and prettyPrisoners is a deep dark film, with a first rate cinematography, breathtaking performances, riveting editing, incredible dialog, and pretty much one of the best movies of all year. What makes this movie distinctive, is the opening silent sequence, the atmosphere its self, it is chilling and a gripping thriller, it is a tense talk film that kept me at the edge of my seat. It is maybe the best performance ever coming from Hugh Jackman, he is magnificent in this movie, the villains and the good ones, everyone in this movie has something wrong with them, and this is one of the things that I loved in this film. Prisoners is one of the best movies all year and highly recommended, I loved Prisoners. Expand
  3. Sep 22, 2013
    9
    This summer was one for the books. With the exception of "Despicable Me 2", most highly anticipated films were duds, "The Lone Ranger"This summer was one for the books. With the exception of "Despicable Me 2", most highly anticipated films were duds, "The Lone Ranger" the biggest disappointment of all. Fortunately this fall seems to be starting off much better, thanks to "Prisoners".
    It's a first rate crime thriller with new developments at every turn, making it very difficult to figure out exactly what has happened, as the audience discovers the truth at the same time the characters do. Hugh Jackman as always is excellent as the grieving and understandably manic father of a kidnapped daughter, along with her friend and the neighbor's girl at the same time.
    Jake Gyllenhaal turns in a performance as good as Jackman's as the detective assigned to and determined to find the girls alive.
    One critic reviewed this movie and slammed it all the way through, and just to show his ignorance managed to re-slam "Mystic River", so it's a safe assumption based on the fact that both are riveting stories and excellent movies, this critic either pans the good stuff just to be a jerk or doesn't know a good movie when it bites his ass.
    The movie will keep you guessing throughout I had misidentified the kidnapper at least three times. It is a dark and utterly humorless movie, but for those who like a good crime mystery, it's among the best. While not similar in plot to the superb "Shutter Island", it does remind me of that unpredictable ending too. Whether it's Oscar material is debatable, but it is one of the best movies of the year so far.
    Expand
  4. Sep 24, 2013
    9
    Fantastic film, and Jake is its heart and soul. The trailer makes it look much more dour and depressing than it actually is. It's a trueFantastic film, and Jake is its heart and soul. The trailer makes it look much more dour and depressing than it actually is. It's a true thriller, and I'm excited to see it again. Expand
  5. Jan 3, 2014
    8
    Literally just finished watching this and my heart is still racing. Jesus Christ this movie is tense.
    Hugh Jackman plays the father of one of
    Literally just finished watching this and my heart is still racing. Jesus Christ this movie is tense.
    Hugh Jackman plays the father of one of two children abducted on Thanksgiving, I think that this year it's between him and Tom Hanks for Best Actor. With the exception of Jake Gyllenhaal as Detective Loki (Best Supporting Actor 2013), the cast is reasonably unknown. That doesn't mean that they don't all do a brilliant. But there is one performance in the movie, by an actor who before watching this was unknown to me, which is amazing. Paul Dano as Alex Jones. Give that man an Oscar. No give him a new type of award which is better than an Oscar. A award or something. He plays a strange, creepy alleged pedofile who is the supposed culprit behind the kidnapping of the two girls. The one word which comes to mind when I think of his character is slimy. He's a mix of Hannibal Lecter, Gollum and the late Michael Jackson. Super creepy! I would watch the 150 minute movie all over again just for his performance. Best actor in the whole film, he totally compensates for the plot hole riddled script and some boring scenes. Much like the recent movies Captain Phillips, Argo and Zero Dark Thirty one of my favourite things about Prisoners is that it stays realistic the whole way through and does not exaggerate action scenes or the climax. This is probably why it gets slow moving and quite boring in the middle, but it's still riveting stuff overall. I am not the type of movie reviewer who pays attention to the score, however, from what I have heard it was extremely effective at building up tension and always fit the scenes it was being played too. Finally the ending is extremely hard to understand. Once I had checked that I was right on Wikipedia it made sense. But as the credits started to roll, I asked myself the question: "What the just happened"?
    Overall Prisoners is a hugely enjoyable movie. Sure it has plot holes the size of small villages and the ending isn't very easy to interpret. But those things are redeemed by Hugh Jackman's brilliant lead and Paul Dano's chilling, shiver inducing performance as the alleged pedofile who can best be described with the word: slimy. Ridiculously tense and very intelligent Prisoners is undoubtedly worth a watch.
    Expand
  6. Oct 5, 2013
    7
    Good solid movie, a bit long and unbelievable (but aren't all movies?). Just wished the ending had been a bit more satisfying IMHO it "cutGood solid movie, a bit long and unbelievable (but aren't all movies?). Just wished the ending had been a bit more satisfying IMHO it "cut off" a bit too early. Another good movie very similar to this (without as many characters) is CHAINED directed by David Lynch's daughter. It was more believable and more gut wrenching. Expand
  7. Mar 31, 2014
    0
    this movie is Absolute waste of time .. i am so sorry for mark Wahlberg ..this movie is so much worse than movie 43. i am glad that i did notthis movie is Absolute waste of time .. i am so sorry for mark Wahlberg ..this movie is so much worse than movie 43. i am glad that i did not waste my money and downloaded it for free Expand

See all 135 User Reviews

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