Synopsis:Two strangers awaken in a room with no recollection of how they got there or why, and soon discover they are pawns in a deadly game perpetrated by a notorious serial killer.
SAW (2004) is an American psychological mystery horror film that has an estimated budget of $1.2 million and grossed over $103.9 million at the box office. Director James Wan (The Conjuring 2 (2016), Insidious: Chapter 2 (2013), The Conjuring (2013)) executed Saw marvelously. Saw contains twists, flashy engineering, imaginative torture scenarios, intricate structure, complex flashbacks-within-flashbacks, creepy, terrifying, suspense, and a good plot.
Saw was a mind gripping movie. Adam (Leigh Whannell - Insidious: Chapter 2 (2013), Saw III (2006), Insidious (2010)) who is a photographer waking up with his ankle chained to a pipe in a bathtub located in an old bathroom. Across the room, from Adam was Lawrence (Cary Elwes - The Princess Bride (1987), Robin Hood: Men in Tights (1993), Liar Liar (1997)) who is an oncologist that is also chained. Adam and Lawrence discover they have a tape in their possession and have to play it with the microcassette recorder that the corpse between them is holding. The tape tells the two men to do different things.
Adam was encouraged to escape as fast as he can from the bathroom while Lawrence was told to kill Adam by 6 o’clock or else his wife and daughter will be murdered while he is left to die. Skip forward - Lawrence figures out that they were kidnapped/captured by the Jigsaw Killer, who is a person that Lawrence was suspected of being about five months prior. The movie gets fascinating as we see a flashback and later learn that Zep (Michael Emerson - Person of Interest (2011-2016), Lost (2006-2010), Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, Part 2 (2013)) is behind it all. Zep is keeping Alison and Diana captive in their home while he is watching Adam and Lawrence via a camera he installed behind a two-way mirror in the bathroom. Tapp is also keeping a watch on the house - you have to see what happened to Tapp and his partner at the warehouse.
Saw is not a scary movie, but it is an intense ride as we see helpless people being terrorized by a sadist in a debilitated environment. All of the actors did a fantastic job with their roles, but Elwes and Whannell had a hard time speaking in an American accent throughout the movie - Elwes overacted a little. The film is set apart from other serial killer movies because the killer had a twisted motive/morality which he thinks gives him the right to humiliate and torture his victims. Saw could have done way better without the formulaic detective story which was not needed.
About SAW 2004
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Writers: Leigh Whannell, James Wan
Director: James Wan