Prisoners commits a bit of a crime on BluRay & DVD


Warner Brothers releases ‘Prisoners’ in a three-disc combo pack – but is it all it’s cracked up to be? Where are the special features? Now, that’s the real crime!


When it comes to motion pictures, I typically tend to lean more towards comedies. What can I say? It’s just my comfort zone. It’s for this fact alone that it came as a bit of a surprise to my friends that I opted to watch a movie such as Prisoners, a film that’s not only gritty but damn near depressing — but depressing in a good way. Headlined by Hugh Jackman, whom we all know and love as Wolverine in the X-Men series, Prisoners is one humorless movie.

The film centers on Jackman who plays a determined father who must come to terms with the reality that his young daughter has been kidnapped and possibly murdered along with her best friend. As family members and friends deal with her tragic and mysterious disappearance, Jackman’s Keller Dover — what the hell kind of name is that? — launches an all-out war on the young man who he believes may be the culprit. Complicating things is the fact that this man, played wonderfully by Paul Dano, has the IQ of a 10-year-old and isn’t big on talking and sharing feelings. Things get a bit disturbing with some pretty frightening torture scenes and squirm-inducing images. It’s worth noting that the film was once rated NC-17 before being edited to earn an R rating. Still, it makes for some remarkably tough stuff.

With that being said, how does all of this do on BluRay?

Well, in my humble opinion, that’s rather hard to say. Never one to skimp on crystal clear visuals, Warner Brothers chose to release Prisoners in 1080p high definition — which on a movie with vibrant colors would work wonders. Pardon my slang but Prisoners ain’t that kind of movie. From the second the movie begins, the color scheme is dark, dreary and bleak. There’s hardly any sunshine. There’s an overcast in the first few outdoor scenes and everything is just grim. Perchance that’s what the film is going for. Nevertheless, when it comes to high definition, I like to see my films in color.

The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 mix is a nice touch, but is pretty customary when it comes to releases from Warner Brothers as is the fact that it comes in English, French and Spanish. What I do like is that the studio chose to release this in a nice combo pack including BluRay, DVD and — drumroll, please — Ultraviolet which seems to be all the rage now. Additionally, the ultraviolet component can be instantly streamed allowing for viewing on different platforms including television, smart phones, tablets and computers.

Not too shabby, Warner Brothers.

It’s just a pity that I can’t say the same about the bonus features. I’m someone who likes to see what goes on behind the scenes of films. Call me nosy. I don’t care. I prefer the word inquisitive. I like audio commentaries. I love deleted scenes. I treasure outtakes. Sadly, Prisoners offers none of those. It only comes with two bonus features including:

  • Prisoners – Every Moment Matters (3:05) — A short feature with some of the cast members talking about the subject matter of the movie.
  • Prisoners – Powerful Performances (9:22) — A nice feature detailing how the cast worked together and played to their strengths.

That last feature was actually worth including on the disc. The cast for this film is indeed incredible. There honestly isn’t a single weak link, and even though Jackman is the lead, costars like Terrence Howard (who is currently making quite the splash in The Best Man Holiday), Viola Davis, Maria Bello and Melissa Leo manage to steal the show whenever they are on screen … especially Leo who’s practically unrecognizable. In fact, I was really impressed with her performance. Quite frankly, I think she may deserve an award.

So, what’s my take on the BluRay release? Eh. It’s whatever. Purchase the BluRay for the film itself and not for the special features.

Anything else would be a real crime.

Warner Home Video kindly provided CliqueClack with a BluRay/DVD Combo package for review.

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Photo Credit: Warner Brothers

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