Review: Saw IV


Director:Darren Lynn Bousman

Cast:Tobin Bell, Costas Mandylor, Scott Patterson

Running Time:95 Minutes


Our last view of the infamous Jigsaw was of him lying on an "˜operational table,' covered in blood from a gashing slit at his throat. His apprentice, Amanda, was next to him, dead. With both of them gone the evil games of "˜rebirth' were thought to be over, but after discovering the body of Agent Kerry, two FBI agents, Strahm and Perez, are called in to give the case a new eye. However, when Agent Riggs, the last remaining officer to be untouched by Jigsaw , is abducted; the newly tarnished man has just ninety minutes to conquer the games left for him by Jigsaw"¦ or else face the deadly consequences.

As a huge fan of the series I had high expectations for this film, and my expectations were exceeded on all accounts. Combining gore and intelligence, Saw IV opens a small window into the man we call Jigsaw and allows for a fun, intense, edge of your seat thrill ride that escalates into a powerful finale that will leave you in shock and have you talking for days.

If there is one thing to appreciate about the Saw films, it is their ability to cause shock in awe for their level of intelligence. Each film has been "˜somewhat' smarter than the previous and with Saw IV there is no exception. The traps are gross and twisted, but ingenious all the same. Not to mention the continuity between films. Time and time again it proves itself as a volatile series, and I have to saw that this film is by far the most unpredictable. In a dying genre, it is nice to see a film combine the stereotypical levels of gore with a level of intelligence that warrants it to be considered a legit "˜story film.'

Another aspect of the film is its characters and story. The story is smooth and intense. Capturing and holding you down, the story demands your attention, forcing you to rack your brain trying to uncover the clues and figure out the ending before it is too late.

Then there are the characters. Jigsaw is, and always will be, a psycho, who somewhere along the way got an idea in his head that he should play God. Nothing changes in this film except for the level of understanding that we have for him. Saw IV opens our eyes, though not too far, to his history. Sure we all know that he had cancer, that he was in a car crash, but the effects of this are greater than any of us imagined. Not to mention his fiancé, his baby, and most importantly his continual loss that ends up being his pitfall. Jigsaw becomes a man, a father, a husband "¦ but most importantly a person. Adding this element to the overall story creates another level of drama and suspense that many other films are missing.

Overall the film is perfect. It is smart, creepy, gory, scary and most importantly fun. The violence is intense, and the traps definitely serve as a "˜rebirth,' creating a stellar sequel that is more than worthy of your money and your time. Do yourself a favor, even if you barely like scary films, go see this one, you won't be disappointed.


About Stephen Davis

Stephen Davis
I owe this hobby/career to the one and only Stephanie Peterman who, while interning at Fox, told me that I had too many opinions and irrelevant information to keep it all bottled up inside. I survived my first rated R film, Alive, at the ripe age of 8, it took me months to grasp the fact that Julia Roberts actually died at the end of Steel Magnolias, and I might be the only person alive who actually enjoyed Sorority Row…for its comedic value of course. While my friends can drink you under the table, I can outwatch you when it comes iconic, yet horrid 80s films like Adventures in Babysitting and Troop Beverly Hills. I have no shame when it comes to what I like, and if you have a problem with that, then we’ll settle it on the racquetball court. I see too many movies to actually win any film trivia contest, so don’t waste your first pick on me. My friends rent movies from my bookcase shelves, and one day I do plan to start charging. I long to live in LA, where my movie obsession will actually help me fit in, but for now I am content with my home in Austin. I prefer indies to blockbusters, Longhorns to Sooners and Halloween to Friday the 13th. I miss the classics, as well as John Ritter, and I hope to one day sit down and interview the amazing Kate Winslet.

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