|Hugh Jackman & Jake Gyllenhaal|
During Prisoners I felt like I’d been strapped to my chair and was being whipped around through a house of horrors I hadn't signed on for. The director, the Québecois Denis Villeneuve, is extremely accomplished, and the movie is beautifully made, with sequences that are marvels of suspense and mood. He’s working with a superb cinematographer, Roger Deakins, and with a talented cast who create distinctive, interesting characters. But everyone is at the service of material – Aaron Guzikowski’s script – that amounts to the worst sort of gut-wrenching manipulation, sold to us as a meaningful disquisition on evil and how the loss of a child can diminish one’s humanity. Prisoners is a cheap thriller dressed up to look like an important movie, its 150-minute length offered as proof of prestige. It’s loathsome.