John Kramer (Tobin Bell) is in the last stages of his life. He’s gone through countless attempts to cure his cancer including chemotherapy and every single kind of treatment he could find. Then he finds a place in Mexico which is strongly claiming to be able to cure his cancer and have him live a long and happy life. However, that was all a lie and when Kramer finds out, he decides to enact his revenge in the only way that he can.
Saw X is the latest instalment of the Saw franchise, a franchise which has taken something of a tumble in recent years considering attempts at a spin off with 2017’s Jigsaw and the reimagining with Chris Rock and Samuel L. Jackson in 2021. Not to mention that the franchise has never surpassed the shock value and originality of the first movie. Also, with the Jigsaw killer being long dead, it felt like there really was nowhere else to go.
Thankfully though, Tobin Bell agreed to return to his most famous role for perhaps the last time. Picking up before the events of the original, fans may certainly know where this is going, but for die hard fans of the franchise, it’s the journey that makes it all the more satisfying.
However, there is and always has been the question of whether Kramer was doing the right thing to his victims. After all, in his mind he was giving them a choice and that was usually at the cost of a limb or some other kind of important bodily function. In his mind this was the logical thing to do and it made the torture of his victims all that more vindicated.
Saw X attempts to remind its audience of this moral quandary, although the vast majority of the audience will already know this going in. However, making Jigsaw’s victims so personal to him also helps to humanise his efforts and even make him some kind of anti-hero.
There is still a formula to the Saw movies though and by this time, audiences who have kept up with the franchise for better or worse will know what’s coming. Especially considering that a prequel means that the stakes are very low. Although for a horror franchise that’s still bringing in audiences after nearly twenty years, then it’s still an impressive achievement, even if not all of it makes sense.
SAW X is available to buy and rent on digital 30th October from Lionsgate UK.
Horror, Mystery | USA, 2023 | 18 | Digital HD (Buy & Rent)| 30th October 2023 (UK) | Lionsgate Films | Dir.Kevin Gruetert | Tobin Bell, Shawnee Smith, Synnøve Macody Lund, Steven Brand, Costas Mandylor