johnlink ranks SAW VI (2009)

Don’t have much witty to say in anticipation of SAW VI, so let’s just get on with it…


I watched SAW VI (2009) on 10.12.15. It was my first viewing of the film.

The opening of SAW VI has two people having to cut off their own flesh. Whoever cuts more will win. That is the sort of trap that this series devolved into as it got lazy. The films, by this point, stopped being about ‘lessons being taught by a sadist’ and more about writers in a room trying to come up with the sickest brutalities they could muster. Because of this, the films aren’t scary in the sense of true horror. They justifiably earned the moniker ‘torture porn’ because they are nothing more than excuses to show Auber-violent images. The opening scene of SAW VI is not shocking or scary. You merely watch with a desensitized straight face and wait for a story to start.

SAW VI equates the world of insurance companies with the work of serial killer Jigsaw (Tobin Bell). The movie is not subtle about saying that the decisions the executives of Big Health make are directly analogous to the you-did-it-yourself services that Jigsaw provides. While this isn’t a terrible comparison to make, we are once again given several unlikable characters stuck in traps and we expected to root for their demise. The first SAW had flawed – but likable – victims. Now we are supposed to cheer the traps.

The plot forces the policymaker of an insurance company (Peter Outerbridge) to make a whole bunch of decisions of who will live and who will die. The climactic one on a child’s merry-go-round is a scene which goes too long and shows how far the series has gone from inception to that point. These victims are not people who get to be participants in the game, but rather are passive observers who have no legitimate chance.

The acting in this film is particularly painful. While this is all a matter of life-and-death, the writing is so heavy handed as to leave the actors nowhere to go but deep melodrama. Bell manages to buck this a bit by whispering his way through his stuff (even though his character has been, you know, dead for three movies), but everyone else comes across as much less than real. And while Costas Mandylor has the thankless job of being a back-up bad guy, he presents much more as a character of convenience than a malicious presence.

It is hard to understate how poor the writing of this series has gotten by the sixth installment. Now things like ‘being a smoker’ are enough to ensure you judgment. Jigsaw delivering a line about ignoring high blood pressure ranks high on the unintentional comedy scale.

Really, SAW VI is nothing more than a completists film. I have pretty low expectations going into the final one – especially since I know the final twist – but I may as well not stop now.




FINAL SCORE: 3.5 out of 10

~ by johnlink00 on October 12, 2015.

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