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John Serba’s “‘Prisoners’ Review” Focuses on the Theological

In response to John Serba’s 601‑word review of Prisoners on

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With “‘Prisoners’ review: Hugh Jackman, Jake Gyllenhaal carry the weight of a harrowing kidnap drama,” John Serba offers a unique take on the movie Prisoners, spending a bit more time focusing on the theological implications of the film than other critics might. It’s not enough focus to be heavy-handed, and it never becomes preachy, but rather it shines a spotlight on an aspect of Prisoners that is often, surprisingly, overlooked.

Thankfully, carry the weight explores other territory as well, covering the essentials like plot, tone, characterization, and performance. Serba manages to find the right balance of each of those things, weaving them into a review that moves along swiftly without seeming hurried or careless.

It’s a shame to see a critic like Serba toiling in relative obscurity, because he has some unique insights to offer. He may not have the name recognition of a Peter Travers or a David Edelstein, but he could easily hold his own against either of them. Harrowing kidnap drama is a confident, self-assured piece of criticism which shines a light on the film while leaving just enough of it still in the dark. And the best part? You won’t need any divine intervention to read it.    

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