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4.3 out of 5 stars615
4.3 out of 5 stars
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on 16 February 2015
Finally got round to watching this film.
I thought it was a great film. Dark, thrilling and gripping. It is rather long, but I was so into the plot, that the time flew by.
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3.5 stars

This is one of those films to happily pass away a few hours, and which on the plus side generally taxes your grey matter trying to figure out the various complex plot twists and turns. There is no need to go into great depth into the plot as other reviews have captured the core story line of the abduction of two children from a house in a small American town and the desperate attempt by one father, Keller Dover played by Hugh Jackman, to find the perpetrators. The film directed by the excellent Denis Villeneuve is one of a good man who has turned into a monster to achieve a desirable end. It poses a central question namely can two wrongs make right. To be fair "Prisoners" has it moments and is often ominous and unsettling. There is also a nice performance from Jake Gyllenhaal as Detective Loki the man responsible for the investigation. He is no supercop. Loki is often confused, tired and bewildered by events. He misses some obvious clues and a key witness commits suicide in an investigation room under his supervision. Gyllenhaal holds the film together although like all detectives in thrillers he can frustrate the viewer by working alone when he should call back up. The mood of the film itself is gothic like in terms of its greyness and dark foreboding. Rain pours in in almost every scene and the backdrop of a small American town sees a desperate Jackman take a key suspect to a suitably abandoned building in a rundown neighbourhood where he tortures him to see he can reveal whether or not this man has kidnapped his daughter.

The problems emerge however with Jackman's solid if rather one dimensional performance which comes over as a sort of redneck Jean Valjean. But the two biggest flaws are the sheer length of the film whose labyrinth plot is never quite fully worked out and reconciled. As a result some of the acceptable plot red herrings in the excellent first hour of the film end up smelling rather ripe by the end. This leads to the final flaw in that the ending does not deliver a killer punch and indeed you rise from your seat and almost trip over the loose ends. This reviewer is not saying don't watch this film. It is ten times above the bland horrors populating most cinema multiplexes and a taut, claustrophobic thriller. With a bit more judicious editing and a tighter plot this could have been an outright classic.
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on 26 March 2015
Excellent movie has you on the edge of your seat, Hugh Jackman at his best like always, The ending just when you think he`s going to be found the end pops up; or was he found as when credits rolled on screen I exited the movie ! Did I miss something?.
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VINE VOICEon 29 March 2016
Fantastically dark film about child abduction in the suburbs. Brilliantl performances by both Jackman and Gyllenhaal, Jackman as the Dad of a missing daughter that begins to take drastic action, and Gyllenhaal as the lone officer investigating the disappearances and managing Jackman. The story is dark and so are the surroundings and this will keep you guessing and on the edge of your seat throughout. Great film, I was still thinking about it the next day.
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on 19 February 2016
Not a bad film but far too long and drawn out. Plenty of material that could have ended up as pointless deleted scenes.
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on 7 June 2015
Need to watch this film till the end! Excellent twist, gripping throughout and kept us guessing until the last moment.
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on 21 March 2014
This was a good movie with a good plot and for the first hour and half, it kept me glued to the screen but then I found my mind wandering as the movie went through a phase where it seemed to be going round in circles and not moving on in the story - eventually it began to pick up again and I began enjoying it again only for the very weak ending which just seemed to appear out of nowhere - it's like they all suddenly decided they'd had enough and wanted to go home themselves and it left a lot of unanswered questions.
I think this would have been better if it was shorter to give the story a more nail-biting punch and the ending could have been a lot better.
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on 9 April 2015
I don't usually watch crime dramas, and trust me I'm definitely not pretentious or artsy about film. I usually like action and comedy. But this film is amazing! It's one of those films that I wouldn't watch again, but it's absolutely amazing the first time you see it. The reason I wouldn't watch it again is that the main thing going for it is the story and the plot and the mystery. But it's an extremely captivating story.
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on 4 May 2015
Excellent film, the casting was brilliant. I believe it was a realistic insight into the disturbing, yet surreal, word we live in. With so much ambiguous meaning and thought-provoking scenes, the plot was transfixing. The twists and turns of it kept you on your seat, as you questioned the characters choices and actions, and compared them to the ones you might also make, or the alternative ways the plot may have fell.
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on 10 March 2015
TAUT THRILLER...EXCITING ...A LOT OF TWISTS AND TURNS,,,GOOD ACTING ,,,DEFINATELY WORTH WATCHING
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