"Prisoners" benefits a great deal from a strong cast. In particular the two central roles of Jake Gyllenhaal and Hugh Jackman, both of whom are on top form here, as well as a wonderful performance from Paul Dano.
On the one hand there was a very interesting and intense film here concerning a detective struggling with a difficult child disappearance case and a father who cannot handle feeling helpless and is prepared to go to extreme and unconscionable lengths. The father does this because waiting for the detective makes him feel powerless. He lives by strong principles to always be self-reliant and prepared for anything. He feels guilty and weak when his children are taken so easily and none of his preparation seems to help. The two performances made this side of the film work very well and I was very impressed.
( Read the rest of my review under the cut... )