Prisoners Tuesday, 31 March 2020


Additional Info

  • Rating:

    MA15+: Strong themes and violence.

  • The pitch:

    Will hold you captive.

  • Starring:

    Hugh Jackman, Jake Gyllenhaal, Viola Davis, Maria Bello, Terrence Howard, Melissa Leo, Paul Dano, Dylan Minnette, Zoe Borde

  • Directed by:

    Denis Villeneuve

  • Running time:

    153 minutes

  • Rated:

    MA15+ (Australia), 15 (UK), R (USA)


    Children kidnapped, a man commits suicide (gunshot). People are shot, punched, tormented, shoved, wrestled, threatened at gunpoint, bound, gagged, hooded, tortured, threatened with objects, beaten, pursued, head-slammed. Home invasions, property damage, smashed objects. An animal is shot, an animal is near-choked. Head-on collision, smashed windscreen, dangerous driving. Suicide mentioned (newspaper report). A television plays a war movie (planes, bombs, explosions, soldiers). Arguing, shouting, screaming. Sex offenders, killing children, abducting children, pornography mentioned. Blood/gore: Animal corpse, animal head. Human corpse tied to chair. Bloody cuts, bloody faces, blood on clothing, bloody hands, bloody bullet wound, split lip, severe swelling, bruising, bandage. Evidence photos (blood-splattered clothing).




    Sedated child. Child injected with unknown drug (hypodermic needle seen entering skin). Prescription pills. Abducted child drugged with LSD mentioned. Alcohol (wine, spirits), inebriation.


    F-words, s-words, a-words. Name-calling. Religious references and exclamations. Regional, cultural, disability stereotypes.


    Missing children, kidnapping, survival, police investigation, crime scene, vigilante justice, desperation, suspicion, moral dilemmas, Thanksgiving, family, sobriety, inadequacy, helplessness, righteousness.


    Hospital setting. Video of missing child. Estranged husband, step-father, deceased parents, deceased child (cancer) mentioned. Rat, dogs, snakes, flies. Snake phobia mentioned. Slicing deer meat.


    Spellbinding, effective, tense, unflinching, riveting, exciting, cathartic, powerful, disturbing, potent, ambitious, complex, grisly, gruesome, unnerving, triumphant, brilliant, nail-biting, graphic, violent, dark, engrossing, brooding, visceral, compelling, fascinating, sombre, twisting, intense, exhilarating. Rich, twisting script. Outstanding performances, vivid characters, wrenching subject-matter, formidable editing, haunting score, immaculate tone, masterly film-making, excellent cast, rousing ending, visually eloquent, emotionally bruising.


    Exhausting, relentless, humourless, claustrophobic, bleak. Third act strains credibility.

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