James Wan’s ‘Saw’ cuts up the gore

Blood. Insanity. Kidnapping. Semi-predictable plot twists. All are key elements in making a basic horror flick, and all are included in the new James Wan film, “Saw.”

This was one of the best “gorror” flicks I’ve seen since “House of 1000 Corpses.” It follows many of the guidelines of common investigative thrillers, such as “The Cell,” and the “Hannibal” series, but what stood out for me was the M.O. of the “killer.”

Instead of directly murdering its victims, the killer would place the victim in such a situation that they would eventually kill themselves. The killer would even give an option of how to escape. Usually, this option would also result in either death or serious mutilation. These situations, or “puzzles,” coined the name, “Jigsaw Killer” for the killer. Brutality is a constant theme with these puzzles. One situation involved a barbed wire cage, or a reverse bear trap attached to the head. Twisted.

Wan was rather up-front with the gore involved in most scenes, but some of the more brutal parts were covered up to avoid an NC-17 rating, where I feel it would have been better to be more graphic. Damn the ratings system for the cutaways. At least Wan made up for it with the realistic cheesiness that accompanies insane desperation. The final scene was so chalk full of cheese, you might end up missing the revelation of the killer because you’re laughing so hard. But the final twist comes as such a shock, you’ll be leaving the theatre asking yourself, “Why?”

All in all, this is a flick I’d recommend to anyone who enjoys a good “brain-scrambler.” But a word of caution to the skittish-there is a creepy clown doll.