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Thursday, October 23, 2014 
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Cinematronic by Michael Snyder
Film
cinematronic
  Saw cinematronic
  director

James Wan

cast

Leigh Whannell, Cary Elwes, Danny Glover, Monica Potter, Ken Leung, Dina Meyer, Shawnee Smith, Makenzie Vega

year

2004

rating rating cinematronic
  References to "Seven," "Silence of the Lambs" and any number of other slasher/horror movies crop up in "Saw" — a tidy little frightener that makes the most out of a small budget and packs enough sick shocks, red herrings and didn't-see-that-coming twists to earn a recommendation. A young man named Adam, played by the film's co-author Leigh Whannell, comes to consciousness in a filthy underground chamber. He's chained to a pipe, as is Dr. Lawrence Gordon (Cary Elwes of "The Princess Bride") across the room. Between them, the lifeless body of a man with a gun in one hand lies in a pool of blood. Adam and Dr. Gordon soon learn that they are pawns in a game set up by a psychopath. If one of the prisoners doesn't kill the other, they will both die. Dr. Gordon realizes that the nutjob behind their dilemma is the same monster implicated in a series of killings being investigated by an obsessed police detective (Danny Glover). In all cases, a deadly game of chance or choice governed whether or not the victim died. As Adam and Dr. Gordon try to find a way out of this nightmare, their captor starts raising the stakes. There are some strange acting choices that may be meant to misdirect the audience. It could be scarier, but "Saw" is a disquieting, grisly puzzle that takes a few familiar elements and tries to shake them up for freshness. As the debut feature from director James Wan, it's a decent calling card.  
cinematronic
cinematronic


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