The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

Review | What to know about ‘Saw Xʼ before watching

Courtesy of IMDb

** This review contains mild spoilers. **

Though it’s been two years since the last “Saw”-related movie came out and six years since the last mainline entry came out, “Saw X” brings the memorable franchise back from the dead. 

The movie does a great job returning to its roots, while still improving on the weaker aspects of the series — leading to what is arguably the best entry since the first film.

A vast improvement that “Saw X” has over its predecessors is that it puts aside the convoluted story the series is often known to have and is centered on this singular story, which mainly takes place in one setting.

Taking place between the events of “Saw” and “Saw II,” “Saw X” sees John Kramer (Tobin Bell) diagnosed with cancer. In his desperation, he is recommended an alternative treatment, which takes him to Mexico. However, the treatment ends up being a scam, and Kramer does not take that lightly. 

He gets help from Amanda Young (Shawnee Smith), his personal assistant, as he sets up a new game of traps where everyone who did him wrong must find the will to live to escape.

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With the plot set far away from the usual setting the series is used to, the story gets to focus on its own characters, giving them more time to develop on-screen without connecting to the various characters already introduced in the franchise.

The only issue with this plot is the time between scenes. More often than not, characters will just walk around, saying little to no words to each other before the movie decides it’s time for the next trap. These moments are scarce but noticeable when the fun gets halted for a moment.

Gore is one of the main aspects of the “Saw” franchise, and “Saw X” does not hold back with its content and even improves on this aspect, with the movie taking more of a practical route regarding its blood effects. 

For example, in one of the movie’s most gruesome scenes, one of the characters is forced into the “brain surgery trap,” which forces its victim to perform surgery on themself. 

When the character in question begins to cut into themself, not only is the actor really cutting into something, but tons of fake blood begin to spew. 

Because of this, the film is way more immersive and fun, as you’re left wondering how the filmmakers could’ve pulled off such gruesome scenes. No wonder some theaters have given out “Saw X”-themed vomit bags! 

“Saw X” also does a great job as an introductory movie for anyone interested in walking into their local theater and watching the movie without pretense. Characters and references are made to prior entries of the series, but watching the previous films is not necessary to understand what is happening in “Saw X.”

That being said, it would be recommended that viewers see “Saw,” “Saw II” and “Saw III” beforehand to get more of an insight into who exactly John Kramer and Amanda Young are and what their characters are like.

“Saw X” is out in theaters now and is a great watch for new and old fans of the series. If you’re like Kramer and want to “play a game,” then watch “Saw X” and have some fun!

Oh, and just so you know, “Saw X” does have a post-credits scene.


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