Critics Consensus

Jigsaw definitely won't win many converts to the Saw franchise, but for longtime fans, it should prove a respectably revolting -- if rarely scary -- diversion.



Total Count: 87


Audience Score

User Ratings: 29,225
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Movie Info

Thirteen years ago on Halloween weekend--SAW and the character of JIGSAW introduced the world to a new face of horror. For seven straight years "If it's Halloween it must be SAW" was a holiday tradition. This October 27, Lionsgate and Twisted Pictures proudly present JIGSAW! After a series of murders bearing all the markings of the Jigsaw killer, law enforcement find themselves chasing the ghost of a man dead for over a decade and embroiled in a new game that's only just begun. Is John Kramer back from the dead to remind the world to be grateful for the gift of life? Or is this a trap set by a killer with designs of their own?

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Critic Reviews for Jigsaw

All Critics (87) | Top Critics (14) | Fresh (29) | Rotten (58)

Audience Reviews for Jigsaw

  • Oct 21, 2018
    There was just far too much gore in this one, although I liked the back story. They did it again with the surprise ending, this time I really didn't see it coming. I would not watch again but it is an okay movie.
    Super Reviewer
  • Oct 12, 2018
    So, Saw franchise, we meet again. Given that this the first review I post a review of this franchise on Letterboxd, I feel like I've got to go over my history with the franchise prior to getting into this review. When Saw first came out in 2004, I remember watching it in the theaters with my mom and aunt. I distinctly remember the theaters being packed and it seemed to be a movie that got over very well with the audience. It was also a movie that made one hundred times its budget ($103 million on a budget of $1.2 million). So, naturally, Lionsgate saw a cash cow that they could exploit yearly for some quick cash. And, of course, that's what they ended up doing. Saw 2 released in theaters the year after, which I saw with a group of friends and, while it was a step down, I felt that it was still a highly enjoyable horror movie. Fast forward a year later to Saw 3, which I thought was the best sequel up to this point. And, to me, that felt like the natural conclusion to the story that was established with the original movie. But, of course, there was too much money to be made for Lionsgate, so they kept the franchise going despite John Kramer/Jigsaw's death. To justify a yearly sequel, they kept coming up with more and more convoluted storylines, where Kramer had like seventeen different proteges that would end up betraying the last one when the last one messed up, somehow. It was up its own ass something fierce. The yearly schedule also didn't help matters, given that by the time one film was released in October, they'd already had to be into pre-production for the sequel to meet the yearly release schedule. This, obviously, led to creatively diminished returns as the movie just became a shell of its former self. Movies four, five and six lacked what made the original trilogy strong, even though six was still one of the stronger sequels post-original trilogy. The seventh movie, however, giving in to the trend, at the time, of 3D was an absolute abomination. I said it in my review of the movie at the time, that I felt that the seventh movie was being actively sabotaged by the director, who was contractually obligated to make the film when, I believe, he was hired to direct one of the Paranormal Activity movies, which is what he wanted to. And that's another thing, not only did the yearly releases hurt them massively, franchise fatigue set it, Paranormal Activity came out in 2009 and took the world by storm and, essentially, fastened the downfall of the Saw franchise. The Paranormal Activity franchise ended up making a lot of the same mistakes. Yearly releases, diminishing creative returns, etc, etc to the point that that franchise is dead and gone. Regardless, at the time of this movie's release, it had been SEVEN whole years since Saw 3D (the last movie in the franchise) came out. I felt that if there was one thing that could bring the franchise back to some sort of prominence, to me, was taking a lot of time off, recharging the batteries and coming back to the franchise. I think, conceptually speaking, you can't really do much with a franchise like this. Creatively, it is gonna have to be pretty much the same movie every time out. They've already established the template of the elaborate and deadly traps that several characters have to progress through in order to come face to face with the mistakes of their past. Mistakes that ended up leading to the deaths of innocent people. Blah, blah, blah, blah. If you've seen a Saw movie before, you know precisely what to expect. Having said that, and I don't know what score I'm gonna end up giving this movie, as far as I'm concerned, this is probably one of the best sequels after the original trilogy. Might actually be the best. I know that that's not actually saying much, since I didn't think that movies four through seven were good, but it is still worth pointing out. I think the first thing that jumps out at me almost immediately is how good the film looks. I'm not saying that this is on the level of the Avengers but, for a Saw movie, the cinematography is quite clean. It's obvious that there's still a lot of blood and gore, but the movie is at least somewhat pleasant to look at. And I mention this in comparison to, say, Saw 3D which, again, felt like it was being sabotaged from the inside out. I think that look helps a lot, because it feels as if someone actually put in the effort to make it look nice and, really, those little things add up. Having said that, like I said, conceptually speaking, there's no real difference from this movie to, say, the original franchise. But, and the good thing is, that there's no real adherence to the original franchise. I mean, yes, the movie is a continuation of Saw 3D and John Kramer himself has been dead since the end of the third movie. But, to me, they don't get boiled down in the mythology and incessantly adding nonsensical plot twists in order to extend the movie one more year. To me, this is a much more simplified movie and that's precisely what this needed to be. Because if this was a movie that made you attempt to remember every minute detail of the previous entries, it would have been a disaster. All you need to know is that John Kramer, supposedly, is dead and yet, somehow, there's someone, whether John Kramer himself or a copycat, killing people in the same way that Jigsaw himself did all those years ago. The mystery is, again, much more simple this time and it's to the benefit of the entire movie. There's still the some legacy issues I've had with this franchise. There's probably gonna be some MAJOR SPOILERS here, so just don't read this review from now on. Ok, so, essentially, everything is happening in two different timelines. The scenes with Mitch, Anna and Ryan (since those are the only ones whose name I can remember) are all happening in the past, ten years or so, to be somewhat precise. So the scenes where John Kramer actually appears are happening before the events of the first movie, hence he's not really actually dead, at least at this point. Everything with Logan, the medical examiner, and Halloran, the crooked cop, is happening in modern times. It is revealed that Logan, surprise surprise, is another Jigsaw protege who felt it was his calling to continue Jigsaw's legacy. Logan was part of the game ten years ago, when Jigsaw saved him as he felt Logan shouldn't be punished for a simple mistake. So he took Logan under his wing, cured his wounds and helped him overcome his PTSD, I think. If Logan was Jigsaw's first protege, as Logan helped design the reverse bear mask from the original movie, then how come he wasn't actually a part of the first seven films, like, at any point. Again, these are legacy issues. Logan is not the first protege where I've thought this. But, seeing as they don't attempt to muddy the waters, as it were, with added mythology, then they get a pass at this point in time. I know I've mentioned this plenty of times before, but the simplicity was key for this movie. And I think that, for the most part, it worked. So, long story short, Logan is helping to precisely recreate the traps that Jigsaw put him in ten years ago in order to lead people to believe that Kramer wasn't actually. Logan is using people attached to Halloran's cases that went bad for one reason or another. And, I'll be honest, while it's not exactly the most original twist in the world, I do think that it was cleverly handled. Saw has always been a franchise that uses subterfuge in order to throw red herrings at you and this one is no different but, in my opinion, all things considered, the twist makes some sort of sense, which is something that I can't say for most of the other films in the franchise. But, really, at this point in time, the real twist in a Saw movie is that there IS no twist. With that said, I still have SOME issues with the twist itself. Essentially, with everything that Logan did, it meant that he had to have been like seventeen places at one time. Perhaps maybe not at one time, but he had to do so much shit that it would be physically impossible for him to do it all on his own. I'm certain, if there is a sequel, he'll have people working with him, but as it stands, there's still too much for him to do on his own. And, once again, these are legacy issues. This has been a problem since the fourth movie. Every problem in this franchise, or every logic stretch you have to make, is solved by involving more and more people. As far as the horror is concerned, it's precisely what you've come to expect from this franchise, there's plenty of blood and gore and, realistically speaking, that's what the people want. There's obvious Saw devotees that love the world this franchise has created, but its lore so convoluted that the majority of people simply don't give a crap about it. With that said, as I mentioned earlier, it does help if you, at the very least, watched until the third movie. That's all the knowledge this movie requires of you and, even then, it's not essential. All you need to know is that Kramer is believed to have been dead. With that said, however, I don't feel comfortable calling this a good movie, because it's not. It doesn't really do much that is that different from what we've seen before and original trilogy is better than this movie. But its simplified approach to its story, gore and a clever twist make this a step in the right direction if this is going to be rebirth of the franchise. It's not gonna compete with the Mandys or Hereditarys of the world, but this franchise still has its place in modern horror. This is a decent enough horror movie, which makes it better than it had any right to be, but I still wouldn't go out of my way to watch this unless you're a major fan or if you have Prime and need some solid gore in your life. With that said, this is a movie that somehow feels outdated given where horror has gone since in the years that the franchise wasn't around. That's not a complaint, but it is something worth noting.
    Jesse O Super Reviewer
  • Feb 02, 2018
    This is the eighth film of the franchise, and so anyone who has obviously seen the previous movies before jumping into this one will recognize all of the same tricks, plot devices and typical twists, but still this installment is entertaining and coherent enough not to be a disaster.
    Carlos M Super Reviewer
  • Jan 12, 2018
    Saw V was the worst of the series, and Jigsaw is basically just Saw V again but worse. So, that's not exactly a glowing review. But that said: I was anticipating the worst for the ending, but the climax actually wound up being pretty satisfying, or at least, satisfying enough to give me the "Not good, but better than I was expecting" feeling by the time the credits rolled.
    Gimly M Super Reviewer

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