Hugh Jackman and Jake Gyllenhall’s latest film is grabbing a hold of movie-goers everywhere with its high stakes and unrelenting tension — but is it a movie for you? Find out!
Prisoners (in theaters on Sept. 20) kicks into high gear when Hugh Jackman’s character’s daughter is abducted, setting off a chain of high tension scenes and gritty, captivating (no pun intended) performances. As we move into autumn, Oscar hopefuls are beginning to hit theaters, and from the sound of it, Prisoners might be a front-runner this year! See what the critics had to say below.
Prisoners is the kind of movie that can quiet a room full of casual thrill-seekers. It absorbs and controls your attention with such assurance that you hold your breath for fear of distracting the people on screen, exhaling in relief or amazement at each new revelation. By the end, you may be a little worn out, and perhaps also slightly let down by the fussily clever revelations that wrap up the story, but in the meantime, you are a willing captive, unable to tell the difference between dread and delight.
Like the kidnapping at the tortured heart of Prisoners, once this chilling thriller about a parent’s worst nightmare grabs you, it refuses to let go.
[Director] Denis Villeneuve does a great job of modulating the mood (including some gallows humor) of a film that seems headed toward one conclusion, then veers toward another over 2¹/₂ of the fastest-moving hours I’ve seen in a recent movie.
Some will write off Prisoners as shameless exploitation. But like Clint Eastwood’s Mystic River, to which it’s been compared, Prisoners is so artfully shaped and forcefully developed that objections fade. The great cinematographer Roger A. Deakins (No Country for Old Men) brings a classic rigor to the film as his camera finds the secret crevices of this blue-collar community and the ravaged faces of its lost children and damaged parents. Villeneuve takes his unflashy time building character and revealing troubled psyches in the most unlikely of places. His work with the exemplary actors results in a film of startling impact, packed with twists you don’t see coming. You can’t shake it.
I was sure that in his new, Hollywood kidnapping drama, Prisoners, Villeneuve wouldn’t exploit the peril to children for easy shocks. But my faith has been shaken.
Hey, four out of five ain’t bad, right? To us, Prisoners definitely sounds like a grueling, intense viewing experience, but one that is definitely worth doing. What do you think, HollywoodLifers? Will you see Prisoners? Let us know!
WATCH: ‘Prisoners’ Trailer
— Andrew Gruttadaro
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