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Two dudes, one
a doctor (Elwes), the other a photographer (Whannel) wake up in a scummy
and enclosed space, chained to some pipes with a lifeless body lying on
the ground between them. Before they assume that they must have had one
hell of a keg party the night before, they figure out that they’ve been
abducted by a serial killer named "Jigsaw". Why? Well, the walnut
wants to play a lethal game of “earn the right to live, mofos” and they
have no other choice, but to partake. It, fortunately, gets dreadfully messy.
"Doctor Gordon, this is your wake up call..."-- Jigsaw
film clobbered my skull into ashes, rolled me into a joint, smoked me up,
banged my girlfriend and then squashed me into an ashtray. Let's all cheer
for Lions Gate who seem to know a thing or three about acquiring SOLID and
BALLSY horror films. Coupled with "Haute
Tension", Lions Gate has launched a
fatal right/left genre combo my way and I thank them for it. Now, ask
yourself this: what would happen if "Seven" and "Cube" would do the dirty
deed? Well, if nobody put a “jimmy” on their pecker, a bastard child
named "Saw" would pop out of the rabbit hole nine months later to wreck some
havoc. And wreck havoc it did. YEEHAW!
frame one onward, this genre bully threw me into a corner and didn’t let me out
'till the end credits rolled. Although the tight characterization
at play was one of the key reasons that I was so into this psychotic
ride, where “Saw" stroked me the most was in the way that it conveyed its
toxic narrative. Much like the nickname of its loony, this tale
ingeniously worked like a jigsaw puzzle, going back and forth in time,
illustrating the players’ everyday lives, the killer’s gruesome work
while revealing information i.e. clues for us to latch on. The “audience
participation” nature of the flick tagged with its army of “knock you
over the head” twists, its engaging investigation subplot (go Glover
go!) and its sweet mean streak (look out for those shotguns) had me on the
edge of the edge. I felt trapped within Saw’s deadly grasp and was
zealously piecing the shards of info together, yearning to see the big
picture. But to be honest, I never wanted to escape this bleak web! I was having too much a hoot-nanny with all the unpleasantness!
this horror party’s grim and stylized allure warmed me up like a
“Pizza Pocket” getting the zap treatment. The arresting directorial
style at hand was comparable to a blend of Italian Giallos,
Asian films, some gritty David Fincher-like vibe with a pinch of rock
video aesthetics sprinkled about for good measure. This sicko (yes, director James
Wan...I mean you!) even went as far as visually echoing "Black
Christmas" (eye-ball shot) and slapping some "Deep Red" (cackling dummy) in
there! Good stuff! Add to all
that yumminess, a heartwarming tendency to delve into cruel scenarios
fearlessly, creatively and quite graphically (gore baby….gore) and you
get a horror heavyweight that pulverized me repeatedly throughout to then
knock my block out with its visceral finale! Man, I love rude little
movies like this!
the slight downside, some of the directing and editing choices where a
little too MTV for my taste in certain spots (camera going round and round and
assault of quick cuts). EASSSY MAN! Just say NO to drugs and say yes to
illegal substances! I also got confused once due to the non-linear
storyline. Either it was badly communicated or I’m an imbecile! My
biggest peeve had to do with one
harsh choice made by one of the leads though. I found it somewhat trivial
since there seemed to be at least two other options available before making that play. It had me
yelling at the big screen and I perceived it as solely there to force the
storyline to its pre-destined conclusion. Then again, taking into account
the intense circumstances, the dude’s psychological state, maybe…ummm….arrrggg....I
don’t know anymore! You’ll take that “move” or leave it. I’m
not sure about it yet…sue me!
things considered, “Saw" was a mostly well-acted, definitely
captivating and hands-down vicious little horror thug that took me for
quite the gruesome outing. This bad boy fought me with gloves off…and
won! I respect that! PLAY THIS GAME!
appreciated Cary Elwes (Dr. Gordon), but his knack at losing his American
accent in films always cracked me up. I’m pleased to report that in “Saw”, Mr. Elwes kept his Yank twang the whole way (good job
did it!), but did put out a couple of moments of “off” acting. Overall
though, he gave a layered and bang-on show. Leigh Whannell (Adam) held
his own as the other dude trapped in the room.
Very natural. Danny Glover (Tapp) stole the show as the obsessive
anti-Murtaugh. I appreciate Glover on an all-new level now! Dina Meyer
(Criminologist) was utterly wasted here: she showed up, looked pretty and
disappeared from the movie. Should’ve given her the wife role. Monica
Potter (Diana) aka Julia Roberts Clone never did it for me. Here, she did
what she had to do well, but I would’ve preferred another actress in the
role (i.e. Dina Meyer)
meat shop is open! What will be it be, son? We get a blown off head, a
man having a blast in barb wires, bloody entrails, a slit throat, messy
shotgun shots and other goodies that I won’t reveal in order to not give
away some nasty plot turns.
rusty saws the lead dudes had were naked…get off on that!
is going to take the scene by storm when this film comes out! His heavy-handed style
rubbed me the right way most of the time. You groove on green/blue
filters, insane shots, stylish scene transitions, use of still frames,
fast motion, slow motion and an able smoke machine? You’ll be well fed
here. The man is on speed!
hostile industrial score ruled my world! No wonder...it was composed by
aces Danny Lohner, and Charlie Clouser, ex-members of kick ass band
“Nine Inch Nails”.
surprising, daring, inventive, nihilistic and brutally graphic…my kind
of lady! Movies with balls this size come once in a blue moon...relish
them! Although it sported
minor flaws, I’m still giving "Saw" a perfect rating. What the film made
me feel more than made up for its tiny boo-boos. "Saw" had me under its
blade from frame one, kept me there the whole time and slit my throat with
its finale. As I bled
profusely, I looked back at the outstanding experience that was this
clever, twisted and plasma-heavy flick. Heed my words, let this
you dry when it knocks at your door! Dying was never this much fun!
I heard, Lions Gate Films was set to release "Saw" on October
caught this flick at this year's AFM.
Whannell (Adam) also wrote the film’s screenplay.
Wan and Leigh Whannell are working on their next project “Shhh”
for Universal. All we know is that it touches upon the theme of
this movie on The Arrow's HORROR BOARD
back to the Arrow in the Head Homestead...
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