Keller Dover (Hugh Jackman) is a deeply religious man with two children and a loving wife Grace Dover (Maria Bello). He runs a struggling carpentry business. He attends a Thanksgiving dinner with his family at the house of their neighbors, the Birches. After dinner, the families’ young daughters, Anna Dover and Joy Birch, go missing. Previously an RV was seen parked in the neighborhood which is later found outside a gas station next to a wooded area. When Detective Loki (Jake Gyllenhaal) confronts Alex Jones (Paul Dano), the RV’s driver, Jones tries to speed away but crashes into the trees.
Alex is revealed during his interrogation to have the approximate I.Q. of a ten-year-old and is released due to lack of evidence. With no other leads to follow and his daughter missing for days Keller Dover decides to take the matter into his hands.
Hugh Jackman is very convincing playing an angry father, dealing with kidnapping of his daughter and the conflict with his faith. In fact this performance of Hugh Jackman’s is the best I have seen from him till date. Jake Gyllenhaal effortlessly essays the role of a detective struggling to crack the case. Jake Gyllenhaal performance comes a close second to that of Hugh Jackman’s.
There are numerous twist and turns in the movie and most of which are totally unexpected and adds to the mystery. There are no mindless action scenes to pull the movie back. Prisoners‘ asks too many uncomfortable questions like is it fair to do bad things to others because you have been wronged?.
There have been movies with similar theme, before Prisoners. But it is the execution that makes Prisoners watchable. That combined with the performances of the lead actors takes the movie to higher ground. Prisoners is a good movie to watch. But it is not a movie meant for everybody, you need to be patient and wait for the dots to connect and after that all your questions will be answered. My suggestion is simple don’t miss it!
Little Trivia from IMDB
Hugh Jackman portrays a father whose daughter is kidnapped and missing in this film. He was originally attached to play a similar role in The Lovely Bones, but dropped out. That role was filled by ‘Mark Wahlberg‘, who at one point was attached to play the lead role in this film.