Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Saw Franchise

Horror Fanatic Challenge #21 - Best Horror Franchise

Since the surprise hit "Saw" in 2004, there's been a sequel each year. I'm a huge fan of horror movies, and I absolutely love the "Saw" Franchise. Each sequel was a worthy addition to the original story. Part II and VI were the best sequels. 



Saw I

"Saw" is one of the better horror films in recent memory. I suppose it's more of a thriller than horror, although it still is gory and serves well on a horrific level. It's sort of a cross between "Se7en" and "The Silence of the Lambs" I'd say, and the film is pretty damn good. 

"Saw" opens with two men who wake up in a dilapidated public restroom with no memory of how or why they are where they are. Chained to the floor, they are both utterly confused and terrified. Together, they begin to piece together the memory of what happened to them as the serial killer, nicknamed Jigsaw threatens them and plays numerous mind games that lead up to their demise. Meanwhile, detectives and officials are on the trail of the brutal serial murderer, trying to save the men the entire time.

This is definitely a smart thriller/horror and it will have you on the edge of your seat from the very beginning to the bloody, limb-severing conclusion. The scenes that are meant to be frightening don't require things that jump out at you every two seconds, or cheesy orchestral flailing. The situation is what frightens you, not the presentation. The entire movie has a dark, damp setting, and is overloaded with intense scenes and lots of gore, that are sure to please any horror fan. On top of that, the cleverly-woven story is unique. James Wan does an excellent job, especially considering this to be his first feature film.



Saw II

Just like in the first movie, this movie has an amazing twist. The twist in this movie is kind of harder to realize. In the second movie you find out that the event the tested subject (the one playing the game) is seeing is a prerecorded tape. He thinks it is currently happening, thus making him make the wrong decision. If he was to play along and not do anything, everything would turn out fine. In the end we find him trapped in the same cell Saw 1 took place in, tied to a chain, what a great ending. I loved the ending in Saw 1, and loved the ending in Saw 2 even more. The ending is what makes these movies! The twist at the end is the main reason I love the movie so much. Great acting, great story, amazing twist.





Saw III

I can't really say I had any expectations, I mean, it's a third part in a series and such are rarely keeping the same quality as their predecessors. After seeing it, I have to admit that this flick is definitely keeping the same touch of quality work as the first two parts. I'd say it's better than the second piece, and if it's not better than the first piece, then they're at least even.

I found the third part to have a bit more gore in it, compared to the other pieces in the series. Some scenes are really disturbing and even I, who claim myself to be quite difficult to disturb through film as a medium, at times felt really hmm well, it was almost a bit too much. It's far from snuff, please, don't get me wrong here, since the utter disturbance is very beautiful in a way and very artistic, I'd say.


For the plot, I can't pull off any complaints. Anyone familiar with the first two pieces and the plot of theirs, will recognize the atmosphere and the touch of the flick here. The acting is neat, no complaints there either. 




Saw IV

I know what you're thinking, it's been overdone because Jigsaw died in Saw III. I admit that it's your opinion and you can judge the series after three movies, but you don't close the book on the third movie when the story is "just beginning". Should you bother seeing this movie if you haven't seen the other Saw movies? No. What if you like gore and suspense, sure. But this movie is strictly for the Saw fans who have seen the first three and followed every step and hint, otherwise it's a big waste of time. The only thing that helps those people is that every Saw movie shows flashbacks. Honestly though, it's not as useful as seeing them to begin with.

This is the first Saw movie that was not written by Leigh Whannel. Is this a problem? I don't really think so. Saw IV is just as riveting and plot-detailed as the first three. There were many twists and turns, all what we hoped for. The details are superb; everything clicked and was managed well. Most of all, the gore, violence and games were top notch. I was stunned at how amazing the tests were, seriously. It was a joy to watch.




Saw V

Saw V was a very good film, and lived up to my expectations. It is definitely the quietest SAW film, which never really happened since the first film.

The traps of SAW V are very much different from the previous films, they are much more practical and have multiple methods of solving or dealing with them. The consequences for failing them are (as usual with the SAW films) deadly and very bloody.

The Fatal Five trap is the one that contains most of these practical traps (The Neck Tie, The Sewer Bomb, The Bathtub, The Saw-hand trap). These traps are much easier compared to the traps from the SAW II house, but still effective. On a side note, the Fatal Five trap contains some very beautiful scenery, although it is set in the sewers.

Now for the main characters. Hoffman's part in this Film is to eliminate anybody from knowing his secret identity as the Jigsaw's apprentice, but Agent Strahm is very close on his heels. The chase in this one is very close to the chase in the first SAW, but much more complicated, but I'll let you decide for yourself.

Now for the end. The tagline "YOU WONT Believe HOW IT ENDS" has been everywhere these days, but is it true? It's up for the person viewing to decide. For me, I did't believe how it ended. It was that good. It very much left me wanting more and more.




Saw VI

Jigsaw's 6th puzzle piece is awesome. It is a lot better than the previous film. There are a bunch of new and terrifying traps and twists. They tie up a lot of loose ends. The game comes full circle! All I can say is that you will not be disappointed if you go see it, it's one of the best yet. 

What I really enjoyed most about it was all the twists and turns in the story. It really had your mind going. Also I liked how it started off quickly with the opening scene not even giving you a chance to sit back and relax. The movie seemed to go by fast because there were no dull moments in the entire thing, the suspense and action just continued throughout the entire movie, which made it very good. This movie is either just as good as the original if not better. 




Saw 3D

As much as I think the 3D was unnecessary, Saw 7 has one solid point to it and that is gore and more gore, something the series has really pioneered. This installment has some of the most awful horrific, gut wrenching bloody scenes ever and since that's what Saw is all about kudos to them. It isn't easy to keep horror kills original after seven installments but they do manage. 

Director Kevin Greutert who whelmed the sixth installment but hasn't had a lot of directorial experience but he has worked on dozens of films during his career. It has to be mentioned that his work has been on a lot of campy cheesy films and I think in some ways that has to carry over into the Saw franchise. He might not be the best choice to finish off the last two installments with. Love it or hate it but the series set a new standard of slasher flicks. 


Ps: I recommend having a Saw marathon with all 7 if you want to truly appreciate the entire series. I suggest you watch the previous films before going to see Saw 7, like I did, otherwise it might be quite confusing at times.
Cute Spinning Flower Black