Prisoners 2013 Movie Review (spoiler alert)


When a movie has me cringing in my seat with horror, hand over my open mouth and eyes preparing to shut out what comes next, it sure as hell has my attention. “Prisoners” a Warner Bros. Pictures’ movie released in 2013, definitely hit that spot tonight.

Starring Australian born, Hugh Jackman (Wolverine) and Jake Gyllenhaal (Rendition), the trailer for this movie made my stomach churn. The story about two six-year-old girls who go missing, thought to be kidnapped by the driver of an RV wasn’t really a story I wanted to watch, seeing as how my daughter is six years old. But watch it we did and while an hour later I am still feeling disturbed, the development of the movie was superb.

Admittedly, just into the opening credits of the movie, I pinned the whole story as being a “mistaken identity scenario”, with the children accidentally locked away in a neighbor’s white trailer. I even wrote my brilliant deduction down on my iPhone, so I could show it to my husband when the movie finished. This reasoning may have helped me to remain calm and continue watching the movie as the story slowly unfolded into day six of the children’s disappearance.

Prisoners Still Shot One
Police, volunteers and family search a nearby forest for the missing girls – Still shot from ‘Prisoners’ – Warner Bros. Productions

Just as disturbing as the children’s disappearance is the tortured reaction of Keller Dover (Hugh Jackman), father of one of the missing girls. Driven by an almost OCD behaviour to prepare for extreme disasters, Keller engages in severe and questionable tactics to get to the truth. Taking the law into his own hands he tries to find the answers to their disappearance, while maintaining hope that the girls are still alive.

Detective Loki reviews live interview footage as part of his investigations into the girl’s disappearance – Still shot from ‘Prisoners’ – Warner Bros. Productions

Detective Loki (Jake Gyllenhaal) has his hands full with Keller’s dismissive and suspicious behavior. When the first lead appears clean, Detective Loki battles with police bureaucracy and begins a one-man investigation into the area’s known sex offenders. This reveals at least one skeleton and a new mystery for the Detective to solve. The pressure is on for Detective Loki who has until now, had an unbroken record for solving crimes.

I have read a movie review which questions the message of this movie. Honestly, I think the message is pretty clear. How far would you go to protect your family? The actions of Keller Drover left me feeling extremely concerned for an unlikely victim. Yet, put into a similar situation, I’d like to think I would do everything I could to find and save my daughter.

Prisoners’ Viewing time

2 hours 34 minutes

Watched on

iTunes Australia

Movie Genre



This review first appeared at – Appreciating the finer things in everyday life – posted on March 7 2014.

Comments, thoughts?