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I'm a fan of 'Saw', I have to get that out there. I grew up in envy of the 80s horror franchises by the likes of Elm Street, Friday the 13th, and Halloween. And it took me awhile to realize it, but it took two decades for Generation X to be bestowed our own franchise. So here we are, witnessing a year after year set of installments building a greater arc of film that probably isn't needed but surely is satisfying. It safe to assume I get gitty when a new 'Saw' hits theaters; my patriotism is oozing. Much of my awe is owed to the fact that we have a coherent, continuing narrative that is clever and REALLY pays attention to continuity. Never before has a franchise been, essentially, one consecutive story told in 90 minute segments, and for that I applaud it. Moving into the fifth chapter...
We have two corresponding stories being told. The first has Agent Strahm continuing his investigation of the Jigsaw murders and indulging a theory that Jigsaw had multiple accomplices. The second involves 5 unsavory people trapped in an enormous room-to-room torture chamber. I can't say much more or I'll spoil much of the franchises' goodies.
I will say that 'Saw V' plays out a bit slow at times, and can be unengaging to passive viewers. It's the least action packed of the series and features the least of Jigsaw. Costas Mandylor carries a good portion of the film and does so elegantly. His flashback scenes allow him to show off his emotional chops in acting, providing the most satisfying scene in the film where Det. Hoffman and Jigsaw have a good ole fashioned scene of simple dialogue debating the morality of life and rehabilitation. It's a genuinely satisfying piece that outshines the rest of the segments.
On a more critical note I will say that no sense of danger is here, no race against time, like the previous films had. Though we have a timer, it's a moot point. I never felt the acceleration of knowing that some finale was building up. I feel that is the biggest downfall of 'Saw V', there's no honest suspense. It's fairly tame for such a graphic series. In addition, the characters in the 'traps' are just bodies. No time is devoted to exploring them or their moral failuresl; hell, I can't recall one of their names and I just watched the film.
The DVD has a decent amount of features, ranging from 2 commentaries to 4 segments on various traps and how they created them. The trap segments are very interesting, especially the Cube Trap. You see Scott Patterson fully submerge his head in a box trap filled with water; quite impressive and more than it sounds.
Finishing up, 'Saw V' is still a good effort. Though the weakest, that's not saying anything derogatory. That's like asking who would win in a fight: Steven Seagal vs Jean-Claude Van Damme. Whoever loses, they're both badasses. Same applies here. While the others before focused on that adrenaline rush of constantly moving or the characters would perish, this entry focuses more on a suspenseful cat and mouse type tale. The characters in the trap come off as fluff, and we don't care about them or even know who they are because one line of dialogue doesn't explain their motive. I don't care what the filmmakers tried to play it off as, but that's just lazy. The fact is there were too many characters in one room. Cut a few out, quality not quantity proves once again. If you've seen the rest, no sense in skipping 'Saw V', and for what it's worth, you might enjoy the slower pace.
In as much as Hollywood would have to admit that there is only a very slim clientele for these types of films, the genre continues to attract the curious. After four years of running in the Halloween weekends, it finally fell off the top 4 list of films that made the box office top list. That being said, the audience finally got a fill of this type of insanity. This film, not falling off the list at a better time, has represented a period of time when people would rather see blood on the screen rather than dance with death at the hands of justice. During the period of time where justice was due, but never solved, based on the 9/11 crisis, people wanted to justify seeing violence on the screen, but not on the streets of Iraq or Afghanistan.
Nevertheless, there are still many audiences out there who outwardly oppose everything the Saw series stands for; that involving torturous blood and gore, the message it sends to our society about immoral behavior, and the quixotic snapshots of people being trapped and mutilated (in some fashion) in sheer and utter horror. This kind of entertainment would never had been filmed even 20 years ago in an unrated world. The sheer possibility that going from then, which is easily blown off as just some tacky horror movie sequel, in general, to the mainstream film based on psycho thrillers, really blows the average viewer for a loop when they first set foot into this type of film. Yet, having said this, my first reaction to this film is as expected. The story blows sheer stupidity as did the first film. Let's just be real. The first film was, without a shadow of a doubt, enough to curdle your blood for life. The rest of the films were mainly there to convince you that you were a serial psycho bent on seeing someone tortured.
Typically, as I have been witness to many films of this horror genre and what it has to offer in terms of entertainment, so far this year I can safely say that, while Saw V is, by no means a masterpiece, nor as significant as its first production, it still beats out most of the competition by quite some distance.
As you well know, Saw wouldn't be Saw without its morally challenging undercurrent squirming underneath all the corpses and violence, and in this regard, number 5 does well to incorporates the same subtext.
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There are several primary flaws in this film that deserve mentioning. Firstly, there didn't seem to be any main character driving the film forward. Also as well, the script was extremely flimsy in trying to convince the audience that a detective of 22 years (Hoffman) would ever actually turn into the guy he was trying to catch. Another major complaint that I had was most of the short cuts of the film was just reaction shots from various players with little to no meaningful dialog. Even when Jigsaw captured Hoffman and scared him into becoming his accomplice, the dialogue was quite unbelievable. Straham's narration was quite distracting and out of character with the film.
With everything else going on, it became quite evident that trying so hard to tie all the tiny pieces of story-line together was enough to break or choke anyone's neck regardless of what crazy box someone in this film was trying to drown or saw off someone's stupid head. I honestly didn't get the fact that Hoffman and his partner were two different people after the editing which really confused me after viewing.
Every Halloween for the past four or so years we have seen a new Saw film come out. Now that Saw V is here we already know that they have greenlit Saw 6. The franchise has managed to live on so long because I believe most people just want to see a horror film in October and Saw happens to be the one film that is always playing. Since Saw 2 I have felt the films have gone from bad to worse. Saw 4 was just awful and extremely complicating if you didn't have a very firm grasp on all of the films. This time around I think they became somewhat aware of the fan out cry and played everything out with a more logical scheme and made it a lot more easier to follow.
The story is really hard to go into detail without ruining some aspect of the plot but basically this one is all about FBI Agent Hoffman. After the house is cleaned out someone manages to survive one of the traps so he must go back and figure out a way to tie up all the loose ends. Like I said above if you were put off by the last film for being to confusing then this one should be much easier for you to follow along with.
Even though the story is easy to follow along it has to be interesting. Now I think this film really goes back more to the first film and explains how the traps were carried out. Despite the fact that I think this film is in on par with the first film I think it also is just more of the same. The traps after awhile just become more weapons of destruction and aren't as interesting as they once were. The film is not really horror anymore. Yes the blood does flow and there is plenty of gore but over time these films have just made that mandatory canceling out the horror of it all. In a way the audience is almost like Jigsaw. We have seen it all so much that it no longer affects us.
Besides some of the main characters this film really lacks any real people to root for. Well not even the main characters are really likeable. What else seems to detract from the film is that it has become quite evident that it wasn't the intention of these films to go on like this for so long from the beginning. But I do have to give the scribes a lot of credit here for being able to stitch them together the way they have. It is almost flawless. Almost.
I felt like I was watching more of the same the whole time. While it is much better than 3 and 4 it still comes across as just another entry. These films have almost devolved into a police procedural drama TV series. If you try and hop on in the middle you will be missing out on a lot of the story. That is the main reason these films will not stand up to the test of time.
Overall however I think if you are already a fan of the Saw franchise you will like this entry. Though the gore is significantly cut back probably because Darren Lynn Bousman is no longer behind the camera. So don't expect as much splatter. A solid entry into the Saw franchise but if you are not familiar with the franchise.. don't even attempt to catch this one. I highly recommend however doing a marathon run of the first four films to catch yourself up. I would say to people who are wary of the film to just wait for DVD. With the economy the way it is you can spend your hard earned money on something much better than this.
THIS IS A MUST HAVE MOVIE TO ADD TO YOUR OTHER SAW MOVIES..STILL BY FAR THE FIRST SAW IS THE BEST IN THE SERIES.
IF YOU HAVE NOT SEEN THE FIRST SAW I HIGHLY RECOMMEND IT!
Jigsaw (Tobin Bell) might be dead, but his traps live on in this fifth Saw entry, which finds the series' production designer David Hackl at the helm for his debut directing gig. Costas Mandylor reprises his role as Hoffman, the detective whose involvement in the string of grisly murders turns out to be more than meets the eye. Picking up where the fourth entry left off, Hoffman is revealed to be a hidden accomplice in Jigsaw's grisly games of death, which look to be continued by the lawman. The plot bounces back and forth from the beginning of their relationship to the present, as Agent Strahm (Scott Patterson) delves farther into the case.
As I watched this I realized something is missing? I believe this started to fast not enough story on jigsaws death and it imedeatly went into the torcher mode. wish there was more story in the other series. But still a great movie..would recommend to anyone who likes the saw series...
First up, you should be aware that this SAW movie is quite gory. The first trap
we see owes a lot to Edgar Allan Poe's "The Pit and the Pendulum" only here (in
comparison to the Vincent Price movie) this is a cut above (pardon the pun.)
Tobin Bell's Jigsaw is seen a lot (in flashback, obviously) and much of what you
thought you knew of the SAW plot line across the films is cleverly re-woven
here. In that regard, you should definitely see the SAW movies in order,
a lot of the movie would make no sense at all without knowing what when before
and the cleverness of the back plot changes would be lost.
The plot of this film as tight and compelling, and the sharp pacing kept me on
the edge of my seat for most of the movie.
The traps (aside from the Poe style pendulum, which, though well done was for me
clearly a "lift") are once more unique and clever. My personal favorite from
this film would be the five man table saw trap - It certainly made me grimace!
I would definitely recommend this film, though seeing the prior SAW movies
first is pretty much a requirement.
Thumbs up: 1. the logical plot 2. the morals of working together as a team in face of impending doom..and 3. Jigsaw's yet-to-be ended legacy
Thumbs down: 1. terrible acting (of some of the movie's victims)...and 2. what the hell is in that box that Jigsaw gave to his ex-wife?
Saw V...the unveiling...this movie is basically the unveiling of every twists and mysteries of the past 4 Saw movies. This could have ended the franchise's good run at the box -office but then again, like it's predecessors, Saw V's conclusion didn't quite end it all. With the good-guy-turned-out-to-be-the-accomplice was spared of death, it looks like Saw VI is just lurking around.
The question is, who are the next targets? I'm looking forward to the next chapter...
Nothing is better than watching a horror movie on a cold night with people you care about. Although I would not place the Saw series in the same category such as "Halloween" or "Jason" in means of horror, but it has plenty of gore and keeps on the edge of your seat as you watch chosen people by Jigsaw attempt to survive his "tests". I don't have many complaints about the series, but more impressed of how many torture devices could be created for the movies.
Let me say upfront that I am a HUGE fan of the "Saw" movies. I'm not a huge horror fan because I don't find them scary (oooh, LOUD music and a cat jumping out of a cupboard!). The gory ones (to me at least) are guts for the sake of guts with no scares. The Saw movies however have some brains involved too. A person is in a bad situation and there will be gore and blood, but there is a REASON they are there and they (because they have done something bad) have a logical way to escape death (more often than not involving them being in a lot of pain) if they are willing to sacrifice something. They have a choice at redemption via suffering, or they can die.
Anyway, I thought that I would probably not like this one so much. You can only take the same basic premise so far, for so long. Y'see, to get the most out of the "Saw" movies, you really have to have watched all of them because they always link together and intertwine (Saw 3 and 4 it turns out were running simulaniously timewise, a clever twist) so I thought (even though I re-watched parts I-IV earlier this year) I would forget the plots from the earlier movies and a lot of the film would be lost to me. Luckily my memory held up pretty well.
Jigsaw is still dead, his apprentice Amanda is still dead, but it turns out that Jigsaw had a SECOND hidden apprentice working for him (a cop called Hoffman) Another cop who was supposed to die at the end of Saw 3/4 survived and figured this out, so now Hoffman has to take care of him (and we get lots of flashbacks showing how Hoffman fits into the first four movies)
Still, it was loads of gory fun and the subplot with five mysteriously connected strangers trying to escape nasty ends was interesting (although the "twist" was not as shocking as usual) Also, what was in the box that Jigsaw's ex wife recieved? hmm, guess I will be watching "Saw VI" to find out (maybe)
I had bought this item a few weeks ago. I have not really watched the movie I bought because I had already seen it before,serveral times.
I like all these Saw movies So much that I decided I wanted to have a copy of each part. I think this series is one of the best Horror series EVER!!
I like the clever traps that people get put into and the reasoning for them to be in that situation. The producer keeps us all in suspense the whole way threw all 6 Chapters.
saw v was a pretty good movie if you like the blood and gore. as well new torture devices as well for the movie. but they are getting carried away with to many sequels to one movie. this is a good gory movie for those of you that are horror fans but i am getting a little tired of too many sequels to one franchise. this movie is worth the time to pick up and watch.