See-Saw Day Seven (Saw 3D)

Director: Kevin Greutert

Budget: $20million

Box Office: $136.1million

  • Oh boy, this film is also in 3D, that’s a sure sign of quality when it comes to horror films and is not at all a desperate attempt at dragging people to see it by promoting a gimmick.
  • This film was also known as “Saw: The Final Chapter”. Like almost every single film with that title, however, it’s not the last one.
  • We’re starting with flashbacks to the first one? Jesus HG Wells
  • Although the fact they’re doing this shows that the one-legged doctor is back. Let’s face it; they wouldn’t focus on that scene unless something important from it was coming back. It can’t be Jigsaw, we saw his autopsy, it can’t be Adam, we saw him die in the third one too, so that leaves only Dr. Gordon.
  • Yup, we see a one-legged person crawling.
  • And now I have Linkin Park in my head.
  • Ah man he looks rough, love the make-up they do on him, makes him look awful, in a good way.
  • Fun fact; this film was once shown accidentally at the cinema instead of Megamind.
  • Now onto a trap, two people are chained to a table with buzzsaws on it. In a shop window. How on earth did this get set up? And why have people only just noticed? I mean, we see people stop and stare, but we also see people who are walking away from it so obviously walked past it before the film started. Would it have been too much to ask for a curtain to be involved? Not exactly a complex problem.
  • All these people are standing there, none of them try to break down the glass.
  • Now a curtain comes down, a woman is tied to the ceiling, in basically her underwear.
  • Now the reason; she’s been cheating one on with the other, getting them to steal stuff for her. They have to either push the saw into the other one, or kill her.
  • She goads one to kill the other, then quickly switches her allegiance when the other person starts to look like they’re winning. This works as well as can be expected for her, they decide she dies, with the fakest fake stuff that’s ever looked fake. I mean, I get they can’t actually kill people for movies (damn human rights laws) but they can make it look better than this.
  • Gee this film sure likes its flashbacks, going back to the end of the last movie now, where Hoffman escaped his bear trap.
  • Jill is at the police station but will only speak to certain people, specifically Internal Affairs, who describe her as “crazier than a sack full of cats”, is that a thing people say?
  • “You’ve got to give before you receive in this house Jill” that sounds sexual.
  • Guy called Bobby Dagan is on television talking about how he survived a Jigsaw trap and published a self-book about it. He later turns out to have been bullshitting. He tells a story about how he had to dig two hooks into his pectoral muscles and use them hoist himself up. Weird that nobody asked to see the scars to prove that. Or asked the doctors who definitely would have treated him about his rehabilitation.
  • “I found a strength I didn’t know I had, I just pulled myself up, and yanked the hooks out of my chest” and then I totally had sex with a really hot cheerleader, she’s from Canada you don’t know her.
  • Jill has a nightmare that she gets killed by being run over by a train/spike. Weirdly her dreams are in 3rd person view.
  • Dream sequences are another surefire way that you’re doing a great job with a horror movie btw.
  • I mean, I’ll allow it for Nightmare On Elm Street.
  • Chester Bennington from Linkin Park wakes up in a car-based trap. And now I’m reminded of his death and I have a sad.
  • Okay, it turns out he’s a nazi skinhead, and Jigsaw abhors racism. So to sum up; Jigsaw hates: privatized healthcare, nazi’s infidelity, and extortionate money lenders. #JeSuisJigsaw
  • Quite a complicated trap, he’s glued to a car and in 30 seconds the car he’s in will drop down, crushing one of his friends, then drive off, tearing off the arms of someone else, and will end up crashing into someone on the other side.
  • Jigsaws message btw was played on an in-car tapedeck.
  • Luckily (not for him) the glue is a bit stronger than the glue I’m used to. Otherwise he’d have been lose before he even woke up.
  • “damn you Evan, you got us into this”. Typical Nazi’s, always blaming each other for their mistakes. It’s usually the Jews though.
  • Wow, some of the stuff in this looks REALLY fake. The skin peeling off his back looks plastic, the head being crushed is really hard to look at and NOT know it’s fake, you can OBVIOUSLY tell the person who got his limbs taken off is a mannequin. It’s like they just didn’t care, there’s no dedication to their craft in this and it means they end up looking laughable.
  • A Jigsaw survivors group. I like this as an idea, it makes it seem real. You know what I don’t like? The marketing for this film. The poster showed a statue of Jigsaw being made, suggesting a cult-like following for him or that a lot of people were starting to agree with his methods and make their own piss-poor versions of his traps. THAT would have been a great film, would be like Death Note mixed with The Dark Knight and would have been AMAZING!
  • This survivor was in a trap with her abusive husband. They were both left hanging above a series of blades and had to kick the other one down into them. Yes, it’s a lovely story about how an abusive husband got his just desserts, but what if he won? He’d have learned that violence is the answer to escape things and got more abusive towards people.
  • “this is my lovely wife Joyce”. I like when people say that as it seems like they’re about to follow it with “and this is my awful wife”.
  • Dr. Gordon is definitely still alive, he’s in the group being sarcastic to Bobby. “We appreciate being part of your promotional DVD”
  • “who’s the creepy guy with the cane? Anyone should be worried about?” Erm, surely you’d know him as being one of the main suspects?
  • The tape from the car crash still works, kinda. Enough to piece together what it says, and amazingly he rewound it back to the start of the message.
  • Bobby has been kidnapped and is now in a trap. He must be so happy that his story is finally true.
  • He’s in a cage that’s being dragged around a house, and the only reason this wouldn’t be a theme park ride in the future is if it already is one.
  • He finds his publicist, she’s tied to a chair, a fish hook is down her throat, with a key attached to the end of it. He has a minute to get it out or spikes will drive into her, killing her. The spikes will also advance if she makes a noise. So for spreading lies, she now has to stay silent. This is what the series should do, more poetic traps.
  • He gets the key out just in time but doesn’t manage to unlock the trap because he’s a character in a Saw movie so has no idea how keys work.
  • Flashback to Jigsaw meeting Bobby, because he takes this kind of thing personally.
  • The next room has his lawyer. Her eyes will be pierced unless he holds heavy weights up for a minute, but when he lifts them up blades stab into his sides. He doesn’t even lift, bro, and she dies, on her final second before escaping. Because he drops the weights and can’t be bothered to pick them up again. There were lockers etc in there, I’m sure he could have wedged one of them under.
  • His friend is in the next room. Blindfolded with a noose around his neck, above a hole in the floor with random planks of wood over it. Again, it’s a timed challenge, and again, he doesn’t move until the tape stops playing. Because that wouldn’t be fair play?
  • Bobby gets the key and tries to throw it to his blindfolded friend, this goes about as well as can be expected.
  • Flashback again, this time to a time that Hoffman saved the IA guys life, by getting a homeless guy to drop his weapon, and then shooting him in the back when he’s unarmed. Hoffman got reported for brutality and ended up getting promoted.
  • Next room; his wife is in another room and to get to her he has to unlock the door between them. The code for the door is etched on his teeth, FINALLY utilising the motif from the second or third poster. Only 4 or 5 films too late.
  • He manages it, although it’s a bit weird the numbers were etched on his roots, as that wouldn’t be possible without either removing the teeth or cutting through the gums.
  • Now he’s in the trap that he lied about being in. So he has to dig hooks into his pectoral muscles and hoist himself up. He could, of course, just put the hooks in his clothes. and the hooks are big enough for him to put his feet into so he could rest his feet on the dip in the hook. As it is he digs the hook into himself and is surprised to find that it’s actually quite painful.
  • IA guy finds Hoffmans lab, where it turns out he’s been watching them the whole time and has swapped himself for one of the bodies from the earlier test to get himself into the coronors office. And then a machine gun kills them all.
  • Hoffman walks around and massacres everyone at the morgue, as the SWAT team are gassed. Yeah, this is not a GREAT way to cover your mistakes as it now means you’re kind of a terrorist.
  • Hoffman finds Jill and shoots the guard protecting her. But it’s fine as the guard was actually an alien, I mean, the film doesn’t say he is, but his blood is almost pink so do you have another explanation?
  • Bobby nearly reaches the top and unhooks the trap, but his skin rips and he plummets to the floor.
  • As such his wife is locked into a kind of brazen bull device, which is engulfed with flames. Yeah, that’ll teach her not to……..believe her husband when he lies to her. Yet again this films kills people to teach others a lesson. It kills innocent people to teach guilty people the value of life.
  • Oh but it’s okay, he’s super sad about it.
  • Hoffman puts the bear trap on Jills face. And for the first time in this series it actually works. But because it’s this film, it looks fake as shit.
  • Seriously, it’s the same director as the last film, and the budget was twice as big this time. So why the sudden drop in blood quality?
  • Hoffman burns everything and leaves the building. Only to be apprehended by three people in pigs masks. One of which is Dr. Gordon, who after being annoyed that he was accused of being Jigsaw in the first movie, became Jigsaw after it. This reveal that he was in on it the entire time actually makes sense, it explains how all the delicate medical procedures were done. This series can’t be subtle about it though, and decides to show us him performing the surgeries. Because we can’t be trusted to come to any conclusion on our own.
  • That being said this film doesn’t explain who the other two people in pig masks are. It’s explained in the commentary that they were the two people from the trap at the start of this movie. But it’s never explained or even hinted at. So we’re left with the “who are they” unanswered, and the purpose of the first trap isn’t explained either. This film alternates between holding our hands too much, and tying us in a sack, expecting us to be able to swim when we hit the water. It’s incredibly frustrating.
  • So that’s it for now. Tomorrow will be Jigsaw, the least terrible of the sequels I think

See-Saw Day Five: Saw V

Director: David Hackl

Budget: $10.8million

Box Office: $113.8million

  • We open on lightning and rain. All that’s missing is demonic chanting and it would be cliche horror opening #151
  • A guy has woken up in near darkness. FINALLY, the director of one of these films realises we might actually want to see what’s going on and shines a spotlight on him.
  • Turns out the guy is called Seth, he killed somebody and escaped a full jail sentence. He’s chained down with a pendulum slowly making it’s way down. To escape he has to put his hands in blocks and crush them. He crushes his hands, driving his brain into an agonising pit and the pendulum rises. He still can’t get up, however, and the pendulum comes down, slicing his stomach open. So it’s going to be one of THOSE films, where Hoffman uses the motifs of Jigsaw without using the concept of game theory. So in other words; he’s just a random guy who tortures people. That’s what these films have become at this point, no longer about people testing their limits and us seeing it, it’s about torture and murder.
  • Yeah, he dies.
  • And now we flashback to the fourth movie. Specifically the part of the fourth movie that took place at the ending of the third one. So Strahm finds a hidden exit and escapes. Which is something I really wish I could do at this point. He finds a tape, because Jigsaw never went digital. He’s a purist in that way, a hipster.
  • He gets abducted by someone in a pig mask and placed in a trap. You know, just like almost every other character in this series.
  • The trap is this: his head is in a box that fills with water. And to escape….well he can’t, because this isn’t the first movie, aka the only one where that mattered.
  • He manages to escape still though, well he performs a tracheoctmy,trachoctomie, he makes a hole in his throat. This works.
  • Jigsaws wife is watching his video will. It turns out he’s left her something, a box. A box, which, despite belonging to a known serial killer, hasn’t been opened by police. Even if it was locked the police could still do it. I mean, security at airports tear the lock off your bag even if you’re not a serial killer.
  • A press conference announcing Jigsaw is dead and Hoffman caught him. They announce this in respect for those who have died, which somehow includes Danny Glover. I thought he lived for some reason.
  • How do people not know Hoffman is evil? Do they not listen to him when he speaks or see his face?
  • Hoffman goes back to his office, please as punch (with his punchable face) and finds a note saying “I know who you are”.
  • We flashback again to Perez getting her face blown off, the assumption being that it killed her. The last thing she said was “Detective Hoffman”, leading to Strahm believing that Hoffman is responsible (pretty accurately). Hoffman threatens him, which is definitely the actions of an innocent man.
  • Five people wake up in a room with a collar around their neck attached to massive razor blades. The five people are a mix of different genders and races, and an English guy.
  • This trap seems like all they need to do is do nothing for 15 minutes. Finally, my time to shine.
  • “I am fucking relaxed!” the guy screams.
  • They go to discuss their sins, but never actually do it. Shame.
  • An arsonist runs off, setting off the timer for the trap. What a dick.
  • Everyone starts to run off to get their keys. None of them thinks to also break the box next to theirs to get the other keys out too. Then everybody would relax. As it is, one of them dies, a blonde girl called……blonde girl. Who is there because……reasons.
  • So the guy in the first trap of this movie killed Hoffman’s sister. Which is probably why he died.
  • Strahm goes to the building where Seth died. Luckily the building is in the exact same state; even the hole in the window is still there. If that had been knocked down and replaced with luxury flats this wouldn’t be possible.
  • So the police who found Seth’s body knew who he was, and that he’d just got out of prison, and what for. And yet still didn’t know he was connected to Hoffman until he told them? These guys suck as detectives. I mean, wouldn’t they have known that his sister was murdered and the guy had just got out of prison? I mean, it was in the news and everything.
  • “I can see where the body was through this hole in the wall, this means Hoffman must have done it and made it look like Jigsaw!”. Or……Jigsaw did it because of his sense of justice, he’s killed people for similar reasons before. The only reason you know it’s Hoffman is because of the flashbacks, and you as a character don’t see those.
  • They go through their history, sadly they do it through speaking, not singing like in Chicago.
  • Oh, the English guy is an investigative journalist, that’s how he knows things.
  • The journalist beats the drug guy with a bat. But does it before they’ve got the key. Logically he should have waited until they got the key, and then hit them and stolen the key. If you’re going to be an asshole, do it right.
  • One of the women hits the English guy from behind, letting the drug addict take his key. See, this is why you should have waited. Also, what was her motivation? The drug guy is the one who set off the trap in the first room. Also, who would you rather have with you? Who would be more useful?
  • More flashbacks. This time to Jigsaw abducting Hoffman because he’s annoyed that he stole his gimmick. “they say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery”, I tried using that as a defence in court for identity theft. Didn’t work.
  • See this is a compelling scene, where Jigsaw is convincing Hoffman to join him. Jigsaw is definitely the best character in these movies, which is why they keep using him long after he died. Really, killing him off was a terrible idea from a narrative standpoint as it kills the story and means you need to depend a lot on flashbacks to use your most valuable asset. But the trouble with using so many flashbacks is it’s hard to use them skillfully enough to advance the current narrative.
  • Back to the test subjects. We’re now down to three. Three really underdeveloped characters because the film has felt it more important to develop a character who died 2 films ago.
  • More flashbacks! This time to before the first movie, shows them abducting the guy who died in the barbed wire thing from the first film.
  • Now we have flashbacks to the second film, showing Hoffman dragging everybody into the house. I think about 50% of this story takes place via flashbacks
  • Back to the main trap people. Three of them in a room, they have to complete an electrical circuit to open the door. They decide to throw the junkie in a bathtub and connect all the electrical bits to him so he completes the circuit. One of them then decides “fuck that”, stabs the other woman in the back of the neck and uses her instead.
  • And now the two that are left FINALLY realise that if they stopped being selfish and actually helped each other they all would have survived. Every game was meant for 5 people. So this was essentially a team-building exercise?
  • They finally find what connects them. The junkie was paid to burn down an “abandoned” building which still had people inside. The woman at the start filed a bogus report, the city planner pushed through permits after being bribed, the journalist buried the story, and the other woman who was still alive set it all in motion.
  • Strahm has followed Hoffman somewhere and knocked him into a glass cabinet. Meanwhile another cop who hasn’t really done much finds the woman who was in the trap (the guy is dead due to blood loss), and suspects Strahm, putting out an APB on him.
  • The glass casket thingy hoffman is in falls backwards into a hole in the floor, as the rest of the room rises slowly, crushing Strahm. That has to be the only time I can recall a “slow crushing room” thing actually working in a film. Thing is, he really should have killed him another way. If he just shot him he could have said “I went to arrest him and he went to shoot me so I got him first”. How’s Hoffman gonna cover this up?