Thursday, November 03, 2005
Saw 2: A Critical Analysis
In which V. has been to see a film, and is gonna tell you about it.

This afternoon's entertainment was Saw 2. If you saw the original Saw, then you pretty much know what to expect. If you're a fan of films about brutal mindless torture-killing (and yeah, okay, you caught me - I'm a fan), then you won't be disappointed.

(A brief aside here... apparently there are quite a lot of fans of films about brutal mindless torture-killing, judging by the box office performance of Saw 2, and also judging by the trailer for Hostel, which I saw today and am now super-keen to see... more on that to follow.)

Something else interesting I'll point out before I get into the meat and bones of the film (so to speak)... there were about ten other people there besides me, including an elderly couple. I was well impressed. I figure that's going to be me in 50 years, still hobbling into the cinema to see brutal torture-kill films. Rock on, old couple, you're awesome.

Okay so, the topic at hand: Saw 2. You've got Donnie Wahlberg playing a hard-nosed dirty cop, and he plays the role very well and very convincingly. This was kind of surprising to me, as I still picture Donnie Wahlberg as looking like this.

Anyway, Donnie Wahlberg gets involved in the latest Jigsaw Killer murder, and everything goes way out of control from there. This film manages to top its predecessor when it comes to devising incredibly sadistic ways to torture and kill. I think for me (and judging by audience reaction, for most everyone else) the most squeamish bit was when a character is thrown into a pit full of used (and I mean crusty) hypodermic needles and made to look for a key hidden there. The needles were sticking all into her body, and she was plunging her hands into this endless mound of needles and broken glass... ick!

To add to the gross-out factor a bit, the characters have all been exposed to a nerve gas that sort of mimics the symptoms of ebola. So in between bouts of mindless torture-killing, they keep pausing to throw up blood. Awesome!

So yeah, go see this. I mean, erm, if you like that sort of thing. I do. I expect a lot of people don't. I've seen hundreds of horror films in my lifetime... literally probably well over a thousand... and these Saw movies make the short list of the most horribly brutal ones I've come across. They are definitely not for the easily disturbed. And I mean, there's gore, yes, but it's not the gore that gets to you. It's the simple brutality of it all. So consider all of this carefully before you decide to see it or not.

Before I wrap this up, a few words about Hostel, the film I mentioned earlier. It's from the guy who directed Cabin Fever, which I thought was innovative and very well made. The premise of Hostel is that there's a place where people can pay for the privilege of acting out their sickest torture fantasies. That's pretty much the entire gist of the trailer. It looked grim and gritty and incredibly warped, and as mentioned I'm super-keen to see it. Oh hey, I just found this. You can see the trailer for yourself here.

Right then, my work here is done.