10 Movies like Prisoners you must watch

By Romey Norton
Published: March 7, 2023 (Last updated: February 8, 2024)

We discuss 10 Movies like Prisoners you must watch. Add these well-recommended movies to your watch list. 

Prisoners is a 2013 film starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Hugh Jackman, and I think it’s highly underrated. The story surrounds the abduction of two young girls, and because the police take their time finding them, father Keller Dover (Jackman) decides to search himself. His desperation leads him closer to finding the truth and jeopardizes his life.

This film is gritty and sometimes hard to watch, but it’s compelling as it examines the prisons we put ourselves in; physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. It’s investigative, intense, and thrilling, and one everyone should watch at least once.  

Here is a list of ten movies similar to Prisoners that we recommend you watch! They will have similar themes and storylines; a few will have the same actors. One thing that connects a few of these films in this list is that they’re directed by David Fincher, which I’ve noted at the end of the paragraphs.

10 Movies like Prisoners you must watch

Se7en (1995)

Starring the brilliant Brad Pitt and Morgan Freeman, this film surrounds the story of two homicide detectives on a desperate hunt for a serial killer whose crimes are based on the “seven deadly sins ‘. Similar to Prisoners, this film is dark, haunting, and bleak and will take you on a hunt for answers, justice, and revenge. (Directed by David Fincher).

 Zodiac (2007) 

Starring Jake Gyllenhaal, this film is based on the true story of the investigation of the “Zodiac Killer, “the prolific serial killer who terrified the San Francisco Bay Area. The killer would taunt police with ciphers and letters. The case becomes an obsession for four men as they try to hunt him down. Just like the protagonists in Prisoners, the Zodiac killer is also a prisoner in his own mind. It’s an excellent detective, crime, and thriller film and will have you on the edge of your seat. (Directed by David Fincher)

Gone Girl (2014) 

Based on the best-selling novel, Gone Girl is a thrilling story about a man whose life turns into a media circus when his wife disappears. Then the spotlight turned on him when it’s suspected he may not be innocent. With a fantastic twist and excellent acting, this film is a must-watch for people wanting the dark, twisted tales of torment. (Directed by David Fincher).

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2011)

Breaking away from Bond, Daniel Craig takes on the role of a disgraced journalist, Mikael Blomkvist, as he investigates the disappearance of a weary patriarch’s niece from 40 years ago. He is aided by the computer hacker Lisbeth Salander on his wild journey. Of course, things don’t go smoothly, and they get more than they bargained for. A great adventure film with dark undertones. (Directed by David Fincher)

Disturbia (2007)

I’ll stop with the David Fincher films for now and go back to an old-school favorite of mine starring Shia LaBeouf, who plays Kale, a 17-year-old placed under house arrest after punching his teacher. Bored, he begins spying on the neighbors (and the hot girl he likes), and things start to get weird when guests enter the Turner’s house and don’t leave. This film gets your heart racing, and similar to Prisoners, Kale is a prisoner (literally) in his own home and his mind as he’s growing up and discovering the world isn’t as lovely and simple as we think.

The Call (2013)

Give this film a chance, please. It’s a lot scarier, has some intense moments, and is worth watching for a great female protagonist. Jordan, a 911 operator, gets a call from an abducted girl and uses her experience to help save the girl’s life. Jordan has to confront someone in her past to save the girl. 

Taken (2008)

Of course, this makes the list. A father taking on the world to find and save his abducted daughter is close to the film Prisoners, but this is one more action-thriller than serious drama. Here the ex-Secret Service agent’s teenage daughter is abducted by human traffickers while on a trip to Paris. He threatens the line that’s become a quoted classic “I will look for you, I will find you, and I will kill you.” still sends shivers down my spine. 

My Son (2021)

Edmond (James McAvoy) is informed by his ex-wife Joan (Claire Foy) that their worst nightmares come true as their seven-year-old son has gone missing. Determined to find him, Edmond suspects his Joansnew partner and discovers some disturbing truths. Similar to Prisoners, we have parents searching for their missing children and specifically blaming someone in order to help them get revenge and alleviate their guilt. It’s chilling, thrilling, and well worth the watch. 

Nocturnal Animals (2016) 

We’re returning to a Jake Gyllenhaal film, where our protagonist Susan receives a manuscript of her ex-husband Edward’s new novel and finds it very compelling, but it makes her confront truths in their relationship. The film concerns coming to terms with choices we make that affect our lives, and this is one theme in the film Prisoners

All the Money in the World (2018)

With a star-studded cast who gel together to give some excellent acting performances, this film is based on a true story and is one to add to your list. The story surrounds John Paul Getty III, the grandson of oil tycoon J Paul Getty, kidnapped in Rome by the Italian mob. Refusing to pay the ransom, it’s a race to save the boy’s life. 

Do you have any other recommendations for movies like Prisoners? Let us know in the comments below.

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