Research Summary

Saw Research Summary
Last year, one of my good friends had asked if I liked to watch horror movies. I haven’t seen many but I had liked watching them with my friends in the past. I then ended up giving in and watching the movie. This movie was Saw. I really enjoyed the movie because it required a lot of thought to create. I also immediately had a great appreciation for the movie because of the very intriguing and original concept of the movie. Throughout this paper I will search to compare this movie to other shows or series and also compare it to James Wans other movies. For this project I will be composing a prequel for the movie Saw. The research I have found while writing this paper has helped paint a clearer picture of what I want to write about when I write a prequel for this movie.
“ I’ve never murdered anyone in my life. The decisions are up to them. Ethical guidance and cultural pessimism in the saw series”*
This article speaks mainly of how the writers used distorted, incredibly morally wrong actions to portray part “liberal and conservative ideologies” (Walliss & Aston) This article also speaks a lot of how, throughout these movies, the only way for one person to be saved is through a vigilante. This article speaks of how in every trap, there is a tape recorder explaining one, why they’re there and two, what gruesome task they have to complete to escape. “The series producers, however, were much more unequivocal on their position that not only did the series promote a strong moral message but that it did so through innovative uses of the horror genre” (Walliss & Aston) This quote states that the Saw movies stray from the norms of the horror genre. The horror genre usually consists of actual monsters who are terrorizing its victim through fear while being there in person, tormenting them until they either get captured and killed or until they make their great escape. These films usually include some gruesome images along with jump scares. Saw strays from the societal norm of the horror movie category. In Saw they use a different type of horror. They use psychological horror and gore. Instead of the idea of having an actual monster, they use a normal person with monstrous thoughts. They’ve strayed away from jump scares and have added psychological horror inside of the characters mind. This so called “monster” has trapped these people and instilled a lot of fear in their eyes without establishing a physical presence/ dominance over them.

“The Hostel Rhetoric of Torture, A Discourse Analysis of Torture Porn.” *
This article speaks a lot of the meaning behind the art of torture porn. Torture porn is mainly seen as “scenes of extreme violence and torture” (Tziallas 2010) Throughout the movie there are many scenes that consist of a lot of gore especially near the ending of the movie. Two scenes that stuck out are one, the scene where the cops partner gets shot from a trap that Jigsaw set up and two, in the end of the movie when one of the two men in the room cut off their feet to be able to free themselves from the chain. “The aforementioned definition depicts the current state of Hollywood horror as not only violent but bloody violent; however, it ignores the sexual titillation, which often accompanies the violence on display throughout the genre.” (Gartside) This quote states that the movie Saw is unlike other horror film out there. The movie portrays the horror genera from a different angle. It shows the creativity of the idea behind the movie, because there are no uses of any sexual content throughout the movie, in which many other movies do end up using.

“Morality plays: pain, penance, and admonition in Se7en and Saw”*
This article explains a lot how the two movies are alike in how they both feature serial killers who use torture to portray a specific point or to prove that what they have is special. The movie Se7en bases its issues surrounding Christian Theology and the seven deadly sins. The movies are dry alike in ways that view sin as extremely wring. “Common to the two films is a dominant metaphor of sin as a “debt”that must be repaid. However cruelly, for the moral balance to be restored” (Wills & Wilson) These movies both show the secret sins along with the more outright sins and force these people to have to pay a public penance through the “elaborate rituals in which victims undergo poetically appropriate ordeals fitting consequence to crime” (Wills & Wilson) In Saw the crimes have been against themselves rather then against another person or the law. The some of the so called crimes were someone who was cutting himself, another person was an addict to a serious drug and for Dr. Gordon, he cheated on his wife. Jigsaw tried to correct these people and have them see what they were doing wrong through torture, to see if they really appreciate life enough to do whatever it takes.

“A deconstruction of Dexter: an analysis of Noble cause corruption within a crime drama” *
This article describes a lot how the viewers of the show Dexter justify his murderous acts and monstrous deeds because his targets are also monsters. Dexter is a man who is a blood splatter analyst for “Miami Metro Homicide” but he lives a secret life on the side of his desk job. He is a serial killer of cereal killers. The innocent looking Dexter makes people think that his criminal acts are justified. “Causing viewers to side with a killer and cheer for him, instead of of acknowledging a killer and wanting him to be held responsible for his actions.” (Lawrence) In the movie Saw along with Dexter, the killers are both disguised as normal people. Dexter has a real job and in the beginning of the series, no one knows that he is a serial killer. At the same time, Jigsaw is a normal person because, in the beginning of the movie, Jigsaw was lying in a bed and no one knew of what he does. Both people are committing monstrous deeds, but no one knows who they are.

“James Wan”*
James Wan has been able to direct a number of movies, from the horror genre all the way to a superhero movie. He has grossed over 1,147,000,000 dollars directing movies. “His most successful was the movie Furious 7.” Although Saw may not have been his most grossing film, it is still one of his best. Although he is known mainly for films in the horror genre, his best movie isn’t in that genre which is cool for him because he can not only target one audience, but many because of the wide range of movies he directs.

“The hidden meaning behind the saw franchise”*
The article speaks a lot of what the true message that James Wan is trying to portray. They speak a lot about the plot and what happened in the first movie. Including a description about how a the budget was only one million, and they ended up grossing 121 million dollars. “Though the subsequent films took more dramatic turns and eventually lost the true meaning, “Saw” is a thinking film: what would you do and how far would you go to stay alive?” (Nowitz) This for sure is truly a thinking film. Many scenes are very thought provoking and well thought out. One scene that really sticks out is the part when he opens his wallet to see the picture of his family and then there is a picture of his wife and daughter bound up and being held hostage. This shows how well thought out Jigsaws plan is, there is no stone left unturned. He thinks of absolutely every possibility imaginable and adjusts to it. This movie is very well thought out.