Saw is one of those cinematic franchises that possesses far more widespread popularity than it seems at a glance, and has somehow permeated pop culture in a way that’s as unexpected as it is undeserved.
Currently consisting of nine feature films, the Saw franchise attempts to lend some narrative weight to the idea of cinematic “torture porn”, and the results are… inconsistent, at best.
While the original Saw is by no means a bad film, the franchise swiftly became little more than its central gimmick: a series of convoluted traps designed to inflict horrific (but non-fatal) injuries on their victims, in hopes of “rehabilitating” them and helping them discover their will to live.
Many see the Saw films as little more than a guilty pleasure, but they really are everything that’s wrong with the idea of a modern horror franchise. There’s very little that the sequels say or do that wasn’t done better in the original, and there’s barely any genuine narrative to be enjoyed over Saw‘s nine-film span.