I recently watched the movie SAW 3D - also known as SAW 7 - and want to share some thoughts. This is kind of a review, but I guess it's a better read if you've already seen it.
A little warning in advance - this will include massive spoilers and everything, but you don't usually go and watch a SAW movie for the story anyway.
First off - I've been a fan of the SAW series for quite a while now. In my oppinion, the first SAW movie was a film to remember, and even if you are not usually into horror, this is a movie you should have seen. It has quite a thrilling plot, and the twist in the end will definately get you cold. Now additionally you got a hell lot of blood, limbs and everything you could want from a real splatter film.
That was 6 years ago. The SAW guys made it a point to realease a new sequel every year on Halloween from then on. Needless to say, those never quite matched up to the first movie.
And well, let's be honest here, for the most part all of those 6 sequels really sucked. There were definately ups and downs throughout, but now with SAW 3D (AKA SAW 7), which will be, so we're told, the last one as of now, we can be really happy that they've finally stopped killing the whole idea of the great first movie again and again.
Things they did quite good.
Something I noticed in SAW 7, as well as in every other SAW movie, no matter how hard you look, you won't find any logical flaws. Lots of stupid stuff, sure, lots of "oh come on, that's just a weird-ass explanation", but it always makes some kind of sense. For example, at the very end of SAW 2 they reveal that Amanda, that heroin-addicted girl who got "tested" and nearly killed in the first SAW movie became jigsaw's apprentice seemingly minutes after her release, and then helped him test others. Because now that her life had a meaning again she totally wanted to "help" others or something...
Saw 7 uses that same trick to somehow work in that totally unexpected final twist - Dr. Gordon, that same guy who everyone believed died in the first movie, suddenly has not died at all, somehow escaped the testing area of jigsaw's game with a freshly sawn-off leg only to become an apprentice of John Kramer (the Jigsaw killer) too. And then we get told that he also helped testing most of the subjects from SAW 2 to SAW 7.
It some how works out but come ooon... I thought he died 6 movies ago and now you're re-using him to fill in the blanks? Yeah well. Whatever.
Another thing I liked about the movie was the fact that it isn't one of those movies that are completely worthless when not watched in 3D. In my oppinion the big "3D" blown in your face from every direction should be used as a cool extra feature to enhance a movies visuals, and not as THE big thing defining the whole film. The new SAW did a good job at that, occasionally there are guts flying into the viewers eyes (which looks unbelievably cool in 3D) but apart from that the movie doesn't solely rely on cheesy 3D effects.
Have you watched the latest Resident Evil 3D? No? Good, you shouldn't.
It's a steaming pile of trash only kind of bearable because half of the movie you get slow-mo shots of boobs and bullets in three dimensions. If you watched it in 2D you'd probably think it's some weird fan-made sequel where dialog was merely a temporary feature and written by 13 year olds.
Not so cool stuff.
I warned about spoilers, right? No one survives. At all. Every single character somehow in connection with a death trap fails trying to escape it. Or rather fails getting escaped out of by someone else - for the most part it's other people having to mutilate themselves in order to save others this time. But if I remember correctly that was the case in SAW 6 as well. I believe by now they forgot what the original SAW movie was about anyway. Like, you having to save your own life because you forgot to appreciate living it.
There is that one trap where this guy has a noose around his neck and is blindfolded, and this other guy has to guide him through kind of an obstacle course of planks several feet above the ground, failure resulting in the noosed guy falling down, hanging to death.
Now when that scene started to play I was pretty confident that this subject would survive his test - hanging to death just didn't seem spectacular enough for a SAW death. I mean like, the audience wants chopped off heads and stuff. That, plus the fact that maybe one or two survivors help to keep the "sucky story-to-unnecessary violence" ratio in balance.
But no, it wasn't meant to be. He died.
Died a really unnecessary, boring death.
Now another death trap did something similar, only in the opposite direction.
The scenario looks like this: in some random underground garage there is a group of nazis (yep, jigsaw hates racism) tied up and bound down in all kinds of weird situations. Now the guy in the middle, sitting in a car and having his back glued to the seat, has to reach a lever in front of him by riping apart his own body, basically.
Now what the jigsaw killer tells him is pretty much this:
"Allright mister nazi, check this. Either you free yourself in 60 seconds, pull the lever and everyone of you 5 guys survives... Ooor you try to get free, fail horrbily, get yourself killed while doing so and aswell get everyone of your buddys killed in a couple of really graphic, disturbingly gory and brutal 3D-Slo-Mos. Make your choice, but consider the audience who pays a shitload of cash to see some limbs flying around. Make. Your. Choice."
Seriously, they could at least have tried to make it a bit more interesting. This scene is as in-your-face as it gets. I wonder if anyone, for a split second even, had doubts about this one ending in a splatter fest.
(fun fact - they don't seem to care about who acts in their movies anymore - this is Chester Bennington, lead singer of Linkin Park. Another role was "awarded" to the winner of MTV's "casting show" Scream Queens. I loosely remember that there was a time were you had to be an actual actor to be in a movie - but then again, all they have to in SAW is screaming afterall...)
Now if you haven't guessed it by now, all of those nazis died in there. Looked pretty cool though. Chester, you did the right thing.
Some final thoughts.
I think it's a somewhat watchable movie. In my personal SAW toplist it ranks in between SAW 3 and 2. That's 2 behind SAW 1 but 2 and 3 in front of 5 and 4 respectively. Oh wait, I forgot SAW 6.
6 is pretty much 2 in front of 2, so 7 is 2 behind 3 yet still 3 before 4.
If you are a fan watching it is obligatory, and if you managed to go for the first 6 ones you will more or less have to watch the 7th one as well.
As for anyone else - if mild horror and hard splatter in 3D is your thing and a lame story you won't fully understand without having watched the first 6 SAWs doesn't tip you off you can give it a watch as well.
Aight, that's it for this kind of informational post in this kind of informational blog.
If you read the whole thing, kudos and thanks to you.
If you liked this post feel free to drop a comment about SAW 3D or the SAW series in general, or follow me for further kind of informational posts.
Can you figure out the exact order of my SAW toplist? Try to decipher it from the "final thoughts" section and leave a comment if you think you've got it right :)