Rating: 2.5 out of 5.

Hey out there all you dungeon crawlers, it’s me, Slick Dungeon. I’m back to review the start of a horror franchise that I never watched before. This time I am reviewing Saw.

Saw is one of those horror movies that is legendary for being talked about as being highly disturbing. It’s got a bunch of sequels and has made a boat load of money so it clearly caught on with a particular audience. It’s also known for having a ton of gore in it and creative death traps that ensnare victims who have to make terrible choices in order to survive.

This is one of those series that I meant to get around to as a horror fan but just haven’t found the time. I watched the first installment and there is plenty to like but there are also some flaws here. I am going to give mild spoilers for the movie so be forewarned.

The movie starts with a pair of men in a grungy bathroom chained to pipes on the wall. They’re obviously in a dire situation and their lives are threatened. The film develops mostly through these two characters talking to each other about who they are and how they think they go there. They also try to work together on occasion to try to escape. The whole time this is going on, they find little clues that might give them an idea of who kidnapped them but it’s vague enough to keep them off balance. And the audience is welcome to speculate the whole time on who might really be behind the action, including the men chained in the room.

The whole movie plays out like an escape room scenario where if the characters can “win” the game, they may get to live. It’s a pretty sick and twisted idea and it works well as far as horror goes.

I think the thing that surprised me the most, however, was the casting. I had no idea that Cary Elwes, Danny Glover and Michael Emerson were in this. I thought it was so low budget that it didn’t have any star power at all.

Everyone here puts in a decent enough performance but there are some plot holes. The one that really gets me is that one of the characters starts underwater in a bathtub. It’s a cool and horrifying start to the film but on a practical level, how did the kidnapper know that character wouldn’t just drown and then there would be no movie?

There are a few other plot holes that I spotted but I don’t want to go into them because I will say that the end surprised me. I did not expect it and although it was surprising, I’m not sure that it made for a better movie. I respect what the filmmakers were going for but there are some logic problems with it.

While the premise is inventive, and there is plenty of gore in it, I feel like some of this could be executed (pun intended) better as far as filmmaking goes. I liked it enough that I will continue watching the series because I am curious what they come up with for the franchise but this series is not going to replace any of my top five horror franchises unless they really step up the game in the sequels.

One thing I will commend the filmmaker with though–that puppet is really creepy and they used it well!

If you have watched this, what did you think? Was it clever or contrived? Let me know in the comments.

Horrifically yours,

Slick Dungeon

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14 thoughts on “Saw – #MovieReview

  1. I’ve always been a big fan of the film, and in fact, this is one of the films that really jump-started my love for the genre. It’s not without flaws, but it holds a special place in my heart, and I think there’s a lot more good here than not. Though I liked it more than I did, I still enjoyed the review.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah I feel like the franchise has a chance to be really good and I haven’t watched the sequels yet so I’m looking forward to seeing where it goes. I know this one did bring a lot of people into enjoying horror films and it was better crafted than I expected. I just happen to like some other horror films more. I’m totally open to seeing how the sequels are. I hope they’re able to be as clever as this one.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I think a lot of the sequels are hit-or-miss. This one was focused a bit more on the psychological aspects of the situation, whereas later movies lean more heavily into gore, but I think the base story throughout, while sometimes needlessly convoluted, is generally worth it.

        I certainly wish you a good time with the series, and look forward to reading your takes on them.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Three stars, huh? I thought it was great and still do. The thing that baffled me the most was the . . . Nevermind I won’t spoil it. 😉
    Five stars from me for originality in design and a true psychological horror / thriller. Cheers and thanks for sharing. Keep coming back.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. One more thing: I’m wondering ( sincerely ) why people get so caught up in plot holes? Does it really bother you that much that a fictional story doesn’t line up with what might or might not happen? Just trying to understand . . .

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It does for me sometimes. Maybe I should give it more slack but there were just a couple things about the setup where if a single tiny thing had gone differently the movie never would have happened. In this case it bothered me just enough to lower the star rating.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I wouldn’t say i look for it. I. do like lots of movies that have plot holes but for this one, it just sort seemed like there were too many instances where it could have gone wrong and that jumped out at me. I don’t necessarily dislike a movie due to plot holes but if it gnaws at me, it can bother me. In this case it was just something I kept wondering about after watching and figured if it bugged me that much that maybe the filmmakers could have addressed it a little. Still, the premise was definitely original and they did surprise me more than once but especially… well you probably know when 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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