I found this to be a disappointing movie. I understand everything in PedroPT's post, but it still seems to me that the religious themes are very superficial.. often obnoxious. The snakes & mazes were especially gimmicky.
All of the characters behaved in reckless and absurd ways. Loki lets snap judgements dictate all of his actions, breaks into basically every house in the movie, and randomly disregards possible leads while doggedly pursuing others. The police chief and him yell at each other constantly and thus encourage each other to act even more rashly (one hopes that this is not how actual police behave). Jackman's character immediately turns violent, psychopathic, and insulting at every opportunity, and worse, the movie seems to justify (or at least consider to be of ambiguous merit) vigilante torture as a means of obtaining information.
It is shocking to me that people believe this movie raises any serious moral questions or issues (whether about torture, vigilantism, or 'the individual and the institution'). As far as I can see, it does not; it has nothing significant whatever to say on these topics.
The connections between the different possibilities which Loki followed are very contrived; is there even a single piece of clue or information that they don't force to be valid and relevant at the end? Perhaps some people see that as a developed and intricate plot, but it makes me feel somewhat like rolling my eyes.
For all that the atmosphere and cinematography were praised, I was also unimpressed with them. Yes, much of it is dark, but I didn't find the use of light or darkness to be particularly meaningful. Maybe I just didn't get the style... I was hoping it would be more like the old german expressionism in use of light, but oh well. I think it would have benefited from some longer and wider shots, but I can't really pretend to know anything about cinematography.
As others, I'm a fan of Gyllenhaal, but I think it's a shame he does so many bad movies like this. His unique charisma and acting style are probably the only redeeming part of this mess.
Halfway through the movie I was already blinking like detective Loki.
Thoroughly enjoyed this movie! Good suspense, acting, plot etc. Highly recommended.
On of these "what would you do" movies. Makes you really think. I just think that Detective Loki's character could have some more depth to explain his actions and manners. Regarding the pace - I believe it is intentional, the sort of feeling you'd have if your child dissapears (as the tagline auggest). So I do recommend it. And going to hug my 3 years old daughter and pray these stories will be just in the films. I also see this movie as proof that faith does make you overcome everything eventually, and this is a great encouragment for me personally.
The ending made me mad. They could have ended it a little better. But good movie though! I enjoyed it a lot. Just a bit too slow.