There were some heated disagreements with the winner of our last Face-Off
. I don't have a problem with the majority feeling that FROM DUSK TILL DAWN should have bested THE LOST BOYS, however for those who felt the two films had nothing in common for a true Face-Off, we definitely don't quite see eye to eye. BOTH were classic vampire flicks from the past. BOTH had a pair of brothers caught up in the insanity. BOTH feature hordes of vampires doing the killing. And BOTH have great moments of comedy (and whoever thought that having a "Funny" category was an obvious push for LOST BOYS definitely needs to check out DUSK TILL DAWN and the numerous slapstick gags again). Anyways, that baby has now been put rest (much like the crappy Twatlight franchise, thank goodness).
Today's Face-Off owes it origin to Friday's release of THE COLLECTION. What's most funny to me is that it seems that many peeps don't even know that this is a sequel! Maybe that's because the first one didn't make much at all at the box office. I suppose it was some DVD success that allowed the horror film making duo of Marcus Dunstan and Patrick Melton the wiggle room to get a second round of deadly traps and gleeful gore greenlit. Doesn't it sound like I'm talking about the SAW sequels here? It would make sense because Dunstan and Melton wrote the last four installments of that series. Anyways, back to today's Face-Off of booby traps and death as we pit SAW II against THE COLLECTOR!
I almost went with the "death mask" trap that opened up the flick because I love how the key to "Michael's" escape is surgically implanted behind his eye, however it was just a little too similar to "Amanda's" reverse venus fly trap device from part 1. So, I'm going with the trap that kicks off the bleeding for the group of abducted prisoners! All this one guy wants is to take a look out the peephole as a door is being unlocked. Then, it's snap... click... bang! A bullet through the eye, care of a precisely placed revolver. It's all done in one swift take and is a great shocker.
This one was easy for me. If you want to go by "horror movie rules" then it makes sense that the gorgeous Madeline Zima shows her sumptuous boobs right before she gets offed. However, I totally did not see it coming in the lightning quick manner with which she's disposed of. Thinking she's about to obtain a weapon in the form of a carefully placed pair of scissors, Ms. Zima's wrist is wrapped with a wire noose that zips her all about the room before slamming her up against a wall of sharp spikes. Ouch!
Donnie Walberg's "Detective Matthews" is quite the crass hardass. He apparently plants incriminating evidence, beats suspects, and other dirty cop activities. However, his grizzled demeanor does work well as a counterpart to Tobin Bell's soft spoken Jigsaw. And at least he's going through the motions with his latest supposed arrest in order to save his son. As a dark hero, he does a fine job, however he does end up getting f-ed in the a by Amanda and Mr. John Kramer.
Josh Stewart's "Arkin" is also somewhat of a dark, anti-hero. The only real reason he is in the house currently being stalked by The Collector is to rob it. Of course, he is doing it to help out his delinquent girlfriend and his sweet little daughter. Further proof that he is a true hero, after escaping the trap-loaded house of death, he goes back in after realizing that the family's daughter is still stuck inside. He also shows some crazy inner strength by being able to take on all the pain The Collector dishes out and still put up a fight.
We hardly got a glimpse of John Kramer aka "Jigsaw" in the first SAW. Thank goodness the sequel came along to give us all the full deconstruction of who this character truly is. And Tobin Bell simply knocks it out of the park upon finally revealing the inner workings of what created the mastermind of Jigsaw. He's confined to a chair for most of the movie and still is able to deliver an interesting, chilling performance. I believe it is in this sequel that Jigsaw attained his horror icon status.
There's no doubt that The Collector has all the chops to become a modern slasher megastar. He's creepy, kinky, and even a tad funny. I do wish that the advertising wasn't trying to shove him down our throats as the "next coming in horror". Still, his completely silent stalking (dude never says a word), shiny, beady eyes, and a complete disregard for all forms of human life do make for one solid and scary killer.
"Oh yes, there will be blood." No one could have assessed this sequel better than Jigsaw! From the key implanted behind the bloody, bulging eye to "Amanda" being literally thrown into a large hole filled with needles, there's plenty of gorgeous gore to make you squirm in your seat. And seeing and hearing a victim slowly slice off the skin on the back of his neck is the ickiest of treats!
Now, this flick truly revels in its splattery symphonies of blood! If you can check some logic at the door (I mean, how was he able to set up all those traps and shit in just a short amount of time), then you will be treated to a heavy dosage of top gore. From a guy getting gutted to throat ripping to a nasty little bit involving a jar of large roaches, The Collector came prepared to knock 'em dead! Even cats and dogs aren't safe! And for me, the pièce de résistance happens when an unlucky dude falls onto a floor covered in bear traps! Snap! Squish!
It's hard not to become entranced by the stunning eyes of Emmanuelle Vaugier. Even while writhing in pain with both arms stuck inside a box of sharpness, she stills comes off as amazingly hot. I suppose it helps that she appears to be in some kind of kinky sex device and just waiting for someone to creep up behind her fine ass and play a very fun game.
Oh, Madeline Zima! The sultry, saucy rich guy's daughter! From her very first scene where she's talking to Arkin after a late night out and wearing a sweet, cleavage-showcasing top to the naughty little act she partakes with her date inside the now Collector-trapped house, she is one major, dark-haired hottie! Bonus points for bearing her bodacious boobs. I actually shed a tear when she was killed off.
Well, booby trap my house and call me a bitch! It would appear that our old masked fetishist has slimed his way to victory over a highly touted contender! Way to represent for the release of your sequel! Now, I'm sure some hardcore SAW fans must be mighty pissed. I do hope you spit your bullets of disdain below and explain why SAW II should have taken the prize. And for all you COLLECTOR fans, don't hold back in voicing your joy over your team's big W. And feel free to send any future Face-Off ideas to me at firstname.lastname@example.org