Review: Prisoner's Daughter

Max (Brian Cox) has been in prison for quite some time and is given a compassionate release after being diagnosed with a fatal cancer. His daughter, Maxine (Kate Beckinsale) reluctantly takes him in despite their contentious relationship because she needs money. Max takes the opportunity to bond with the grandson, Ezra (Christopher Convery) he never knew he had while trying to prove to Maxine that he has changed his ways.

Director Catherine Hardwicke made one of my favorite films of all time, Thirteen. Then she followed that up with another great film, Lords of Dogtown. Then...I haven't liked a movie of hers since. I keep trying though, and I'm still on my Succession high so seeing that she has a film with Brian Cox, I was hoping this would break my losing streak.

Unfortunately it does not. Prisoner's Daughter is a very by the books redemption story that is hampered down with stilted dialogue and an uneven range of acting abilities. When your film is good, being "by the books" can slide. However you can almost predict what each character is going to say next. It's like they hit every "down on their luck" stereotype out there. Of course Maxine has a druggie ex (Tyson Ritter, who is much better as a singer than he is an actor) Of course her costs her a job. Of course Ezra is a smart kid who is bullied and of course he has a medical condition that they cannot afford treatment for.  

Cox and Beckinsale are good, but they are carrying all the other actors and it is painfully obvious. The ending is also exactly what you would expect. 

While it's nice to see Cox in a more caring role, there's no reason to rush out to see this, unfortunately.

Grade: C-


  1. sounds like a paint by numbers movie. Why would Cox be in this?

  2. Tyson Ritter? No thanks. All-American Rejects suck ass! Kate Beckinsale and Brian Cox deserve better.

    1. I used to love AAR when I was in high school but I don't think I've listened to anything new from them since. I remember they did an acapella version of Womanizer by Britney Spears that I thought was pretty funny.

  3. I gotta admit I kinda fell for this one. I really enjoyed that Cox and Beckinsale chemistry. She is such an underrated actress.

    1. She is good, but she needs to choose some better projects. I really did like Cox's acting because I'm so used to him playing despicable characters, but this film needed some serious finessing.

  4. Didn't realize Catherine Hardwicke directed this! I do love Brian Cox but this look like a very silly B-movie. Maybe I'll give it a shot, but not rushing to see it, ahah.


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