The Jig-SAW Puzzle 3
By Ryan Pence
November 1, 2006 | The Halloween season for some is
a time to dress up in costume and parade around the
neighborhood looking for hapless people to snatch some
candy from. For others it's a time and excuse to throw
a party, and yet for others it's a time to cause fright
and be frightened. And because of the latter, Hollywood
enjoys this season too much and will stop at nothing
to deprive the theatergoer of mind, sense and stomach.
To this end Hollywood released Saw 3, a tiring
story and end to a tired series.
Story. If you saw any of the previous Saw
movies, then nothing will be new for you here. The story
starts pretty much where the last one left off. Jigsaw,
the manic morality murderer, who proposes to play games
with his victims, is at it again. This time he puts
a father who can't let go of his deceased son, who was
killed accidentally by drunk driver, in the game. The
objective is that he has to confront people associated
with the crime, forgive them and release them from various
situations before they meet a gruesome demise. Unfortunately
this is a horror film -- do we as audience members really,
truly believe that this man will learn to forgive those
that he has learned for so long to hate? No, at least
not in nick of time, that is.
If the main story were not enough, there is a secondary
story that's just as menial. Jigsaw, as fans of the
series know, is on his deathbed with a terminal brain
tumor. As his last test to his self-appointed heir,
who is to continue his life's work when he dies, he
forces her to learn the value human life by putting
her life in the hands of another.
Positive Element. The only reason to watch
this movie is for the gruesome special effects. Which,
I might add, were done fairly well, well enough at least
that I felt a little squeamish at some points. What
sets Saw 3 apart from its predecessors and
other films like it is the amount of on-screen graphic
depictions of violence. Most of the time in horror films
the violence is suggested, we hear a lot of noises,
screams, etc, and we put the image together in our minds.
Even in the overly graphic Hostel, most of
the violence is implied -- for example when the woman's
face is being burned with the torch we hear her screams
but the action is hidden behind the torturer's back.
In Saw 3 we get to see the whole thing -- if
someone's going to die we see them die and how they
die in all its graphic integrity.
Negative Elements. There are a lot of things
in horror films that exist for our enjoyment and
Saw 3 is full of them. Bad dialogue for starters,
bad acting and some of the worst screen chemistry between
actors imaginable. Plot holes are a big issue in this
film -- lack of enough plot to fill an entire movie.
There had to be at least 20 minutes of flashbacks from
the other movies that were totally irrelevant to the
movie at hand. Total predictability. The movie must
have been made with one thought in mind: the audience
must know what is going to happen so they can anticipate
Bottom Line. If this were the only movie
to watch, and you could find your stomach strong enough
to muster it and if you were a fan of the first two
films, then by all means watch it. But if you're cup
of tea isn't watching people die in grotesque manner,
then pass this one by and watch something else.
Rating. This movie is rated R for strong language,
nudity, violence and grisly deaths.
Ryan's Picks. Since I'm not going
to suggest watching Saw 3, here are some classic
horror films to tide you over.
Psycho. Alfred Hitchcock's most daring claim
to fame, this is also the movie to top AFI's list of
most heart-pounding movies. Even if you have never seen
this movie, you will at least of heard of its infamous
shower scene. The movie is wonderful in its suspense
and cinematic achievement. If you haven't seen it, pick
it up -- it's one of those movies you won't regret that
The Exorcist. One of the only truly terrifying
movies out there; the only trouble is that over the
years it has been imitated so much that much of its
edge has worn off, but that by no means takes away from
its brilliance. Regan, a little girl, is possessed by
a demon and an exorcist is called in as last resort
to help her. This is a truly fascinating movie.