The Prisoner Or: How I Planned to Kill Tony Blair - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Prisoner Or: How I Planned to Kill Tony Blair Reviews

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John P. McCarthy
Boxoffice Magazine
March 31, 2007
The filmmaker's methodology backfires by undercutting the credibility of the testimony presented and overshadowing any actual miscarriage of justice.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Lexi Feinberg
March 13, 2007
Could such a devastating story possibly be handled worse?
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Top Critic
J. R. Jones
Chicago Reader
March 30, 2007
[Abbas'] story demands to be heard, though Tucker and Epperlein lack the material for a full feature and pad this out to 73 minutes with some incongruously playful elements.
Top Critic
Nathan Rabin
AV Club
March 24, 2007
Consider it the single gloomiest cocktail-party story of all time.
Full Review | Original Score: C+
Top Critic
David Fear
Time Out
March 24, 2007
Retroish cartoon panels of Uday Hussein and torture cell blocks, thought balloons floating over live talking heads, amplified sound effects. The choice is a bold one, occasionally glib and almost derailing the seriousness of the material.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/6
Top Critic
Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
March 29, 2007
The Prisoner is a triumph of specificity. It is one man's story, told in scrupulous and vivid detail.
| Original Score: 4/4
Top Critic
Joe Morgenstern
Wall Street Journal
March 30, 2007
What's troubling about the film's technique is its lack of context; we must take Yuris, who speaks serviceable English, pretty much at his word. What's troubling about his story is its ring of truth.
Nick Schager
Slant Magazine
March 13, 2007
Tucker and Epperlein's film assumes a tone of black humor, using chapter breaks and comic book-style illustrations to highlight the amusing, astonishing, and horrifying absurdity of its central tale.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Manohla Dargis
New York Times
March 23, 2007
A depressing story, certainly, as well as moving, confusing and, at a fast 72 minutes, at once undercooked and overpadded.
| Original Score: 3/5
Prairie Miller
WBAI Web Radio
March 23, 2007
The banality and muted despair of this endured horror is laced with the all too chilling familiarity of racist US revenge culture, like police brutality, exported to an imperialist conquest war zone and spreading like a planetary social contagion.
Beverly Berning
April 23, 2007
The American military comes across as bungling and ineffective as protectors. If people thought we didn't know what we were doing in Iraq before, this is yet more evidence of our incompetence.
Top Critic
Michelle Orange
Village Voice
March 20, 2007
When Yunis occasionally falters, it's not because English fails him; in recounting a story as hideous, incredulous, and nightmarish as this, there are both no words, and hardly words enough.
Top Critic
Gene Seymour
March 22, 2007
What really gives you hope for humanity in general is that Abbas came out of his demeaning and heart-rending experience with his dignity and, maybe, some of his sense of humor intact.
| Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Lisa Schwarzbaum
Entertainment Weekly
March 28, 2007
None of The Prisoner's showy flourishes -- animation, sound effects, fancy editing -- can match the power of Abbas' stillness as he describes one man's agony in one huge hell.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
Top Critic
Richard Schickel
TIME Magazine
March 30, 2007
A modestly mounted, but curiously poignant little documentary which somehow -- quietly, devastatingly -- shows and tells you more than you may perhaps want to know about the dehumanization implicit in the mighty, blighted Iraqi adventure.
Top Critic
Ty Burr
Boston Globe
March 30, 2007
It's an angry story, but also a strangely hopeful one, in the sense of new life sprouting through a battlefield. Above all, it's personal and specific, and that is news we can use.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Jette Kernion
April 4, 2007
I would have preferred a clearer narrative that was easier to understand, without all the comic-book gimmicks. Despite those faults, the documentary is worth seeing.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
David Nusair
Reel Film Reviews
September 7, 2006's hard not to be drawn into his admittedly horrifying tale.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
John DeFore
Hollywood Reporter
March 21, 2007
The prisoner's journalistic tendencies served him well in jail: He chronicled details of his captivity, including names and serial numbers of fellow prisoners, in places guards wouldn't notice (like the inside of his boxer shorts).
Top Critic
Peter Hartlaub
San Francisco Chronicle
March 30, 2007
The Prisoner doesn't try to put the entire war in context or offer broad solutions. It's a focused slice of the war, covering an issue that you've probably wondered about but haven't seen in many other places.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
John Thomason
Orlando Weekly
June 28, 2007
Top Critic
Joe Leydon
July 10, 2008
Peter Keough
Boston Phoenix
April 23, 2009
April 9, 2007
Top Critic

Atlanta Journal-Constitution
May 12, 2007
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