Author’s Note: All articles on MK Horror contain spoilers.
Article written by Maggie K. Ward
What was once a refreshing, new, and exciting concept in horror, the twists behind Saw have now been over done, remade, and spoofed over the last decade. Two men wake up chained to pipes in a bathroom, with nothing more than a key, a tape player, two saws, and a dead body.
The story itself is told in a series of flashbacks that inform the viewers about the Jigsaw killer (Tobin Bell). According to Dr. Lawrence Gordon (Cary Elwas), this generation’s movie serial killer is “…not really a murderer. He never killed anyone. He finds ways for his victims to kill themselves.” For example, one man must climb through a cage full of razor wires to reach an exit before the time runs out. Naturally, he died of blood loss in his attempt to save himself.
This concept was fairly new in 2004, however it has been over done over the past few years. The Saw franchise alone has seven movies in the series all focusing on grand scenarios where victims have to survive one of Jigsaw’s “games.” Naturally, the stories get bigger and bloodier as the sequels progress. The first Saw film had a mere two victims in a bathroom, and the rest of the scenarios had one victim that needed to fight their own demons.
In a previously written MK Horror article, I focused mostly on the characters and cinematography in Saw. I stated then, and still agree now, that the original Saw film is superior to the rest of the franchise merely because the creators focused more on telling a good story, and less on the shock of graphic violence.
The original Saw film was fairly light on the gore for today’s standards. When Dr. Gordon cuts off his foot to release himself from the chains, very little is shown to the audience. There are two shots with the saw touching skin. Otherwise, the majority of his foot removal shows his reaction to the gruesome act with some blood splattering on his face. The worst part may be Amanda’s game. She cuts open a man’s stomach to retrieve a key. We see a wonderfully disgusting mixture of guts. Tasty.
All in all, the original Saw is a nifty thriller. The story was creative. The ending was shocking, and it set the stage for a horror fad that lasted for almost a decade. At the moment, there are seven films in the series. They seemed to have stopped making installments to the franchise, but I’m sure there will be more to come.
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