Saw II - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Saw II Reviews

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September 13, 2017
love all the saw movies! each one adds a little more of jigsaw's puzzle and has its own unique killings! AMAZING!!
September 11, 2017
With the impending release of 'Jigsaw' next month i thought it would be a good time to revisit the entire Saw franchise from start to finish for the 50th time and review each one. Now i rewatched and reviewed the first Saw film last year and you can find that review HERE, so i am starting with Saw II where we will progress right through to Saw 3D. Saw II sees the return of Jigsaw who since the events of the first film has devised an even deadlier trap that locks 7 individuals in a death house where they must use their will to survive and obtain hidden antidotes. This sequel takes the franchise in a direction more aligned with the 'torture porn' label attached to the later films but still retains some of the thrills, twists, and psychological horror elements that made the first instalment so iconic. The story here is gripping and will have you on the edge of your seat the entire time, the traps are more gory and bloody than before, and the inclusion of characters such as Eric Matthews (Donnie Wahlberg), Allison Kerry (Dina Meyer), and Daniel Rigg (Lyriq Bent) help keep you strongly invested in at least one half of the story.

Where the first film takes place almost entirely in one location, the events of this film occur over two (yes TWO) different locations where you essentially have two 'games' playing out concurrently. The events in an undisclosed house follow the more traditional death trap scenarios that are linked with the Saw franchise in which 7 new characters are put through gruelling and intense tests. Whereas in another location, the game is a much more intelligent one, there is no blood, no gore, and no threat of impending death via minor feats of engineering. This contrast i feel is brilliant and the two plot lines are allowed to progress on their own with minor crossovers and story elements tying them together. Personally i find the mind games being played between Jigsaw and Detective Matthews the much more fascinating story here, especially due to the fact that i have seen the film so many times that i can pick out all the small hints early on that geniusly foreshadow the events to come. The way this plot builds and builds in intensity follows a structure similar to the first film where everything leads up to a big finale that will no doubt shock you.

Now i spoke about the fact that the events going down in one location are more fascinating than the events going down in the house and that isn't down to the story, but rather the characters. The progression of events in the house is interesting as seeing if or how these characters get through their various tests adds a lot of tension and is quite action packed from beginning to end. But where this side falters is down to not really being able to connect to many of the characters and some of the decisions they make being pretty unrealistically dumb. But then again, i'm not the one trapped in a death house dying from a slow acting poison. The issue is that just like the characters themselves you don't get enough time to know any of them as you are introduced to them at the same time they're introduced to each other. This makes your investment in those scenes not as strong as it could be. Daniel Matthews (Eric Knudsen) and Amanda Young (Shawnee Smith) are the only two you can show much of an interest in due to their importance in wither the events of the first film and the other story within this film. But really, you are just waiting for this group of 7 to be killed off by some bloody traps.

This marks the first time we get to see Tobin Bell in action as Jigsaw as he did spend almost the entirety of Saw motionless on a bathroom floor. And here you get to see the genius mind behind all of these traps at work and it is incredible. He just always comes across as the smartest person in the room and he doesn't even need to do any killing himself to cement himself as one of the most iconic villains in the history of the Horror genre. Tobin Bell is phenomenal in the role, so much so that you can no longer separate the man from the role as he delved into the character so deeply that you only see Jigsaw. Wahlberg, Meyer, and Bent form the team of detectives and officers working against Jigsaw that in a very small amount of time are established as likeable characters you can connect to in the story. They sell the desperation and fear going through their characters' minds very well making for a number of interesting dialogue sequences.

So there you have it, the first instalment in my series of Saw reviews leading up to the release of 'Jigsaw', and we began with a great one that doesn't quite live up to its predecessor but does include what is for me the hardest trap to watch......... really not a fan of needles. Saw II retains some the psychological horror elements of the first film and blends that well with the more bloody and gory sequences that the franchise is most known for. Right from the intense cold open you are thrown on an intense ride that builds up intensity and pace as time goes on to a finale that i know i didn't see coming. Saw is such an iconic franchise that you know what it entails and if blood and gore isn't your thing then you should shy away from it, but otherwise definitely check it out.

½ August 13, 2017
As stated in my review of "Saw," there was promise even if the storyline was idiotic. It was not as gory as people like to say it was and it has some creepy atmospheres that led to some decent scares. "Saw II," the beginning of a long road of disappoint for the franchise, removes the creepy atmosphere and adds gallons of blood and gore as well as multiple torture scenes.

The film starts with an unfortunate man trapped in one of Jigsaw's (Tobin Bell) torture machines, which is described as a copy of a venus fly rap. The key to release the man from the terror was surgically placed behind his right eye. After the tragic killing of the man, Detective Eric Mason (Donnie Wahlberg) arrives on scene who is determined to find the Jigsaw killer. Upon looking through evidence, he and his team find Jigsaw in an abandoned warehouse with computer screens showing 7 people trapped in a house, one of them being Daniel (Eric Knudsen), Detective Mason's son. From there, the viewer watches the gross scenes take place in Jigsaw's house of horror as people are burned alive, stabbed with needles, and facing imminent death in an toxic atmosphere.

The film is tough to watch and I am not even talking about the torture scenes. "Saw II" is poorly paced and dropped everything that made the original "Saw" interesting to watch. "Saw II" is less of a mystery and more gruesome than the original film. There is some mysteries that were solved from the original due to two to three minutes of character development on Jigsaw. Those 120-180 seconds were the only good parts of the 92 minute run time. Everything else is ridiculous nonsense that had no point.

But I guess being so critical on the torture and gore for a film like this does not make sense for a critic. You know before you watch "Saw II" that you are there to be grossed out and willing to watch characters (who you cannot relate to by any means) face horrendous options. In fact, some might find the characters picking and choosing at which torture devices to try kind of amusing. Majority of the viewers might look at this film and ask, "Why was this so popular?"

"Saw" was an average horror film that showed a now masterful horror director trying on the director pants for the first time. For "Saw II," we have a brand new director who votes for gore over tension. Obviously, I do not approve.

Grade: F
July 23, 2017
Well, I think the first one was better than this one
½ July 20, 2017
This film is so cool! I'm really surprised that flixster users didn't appreciate cause I found it really interesting and intense and the ending really pleased me! Can't to watch all the others!
July 15, 2017
i loved saw 1 and i want to see saw 2.
½ June 21, 2017
Disappointing sequel to the surprisingly quality first film. "Saw" had good plotting and a solid mystery, along with a lot of memorably grizzly horror. This sequel instead focuses primarily on the grizzly horror (the pit of dirty drug needles is by far the film's most memorable moment and unsettling) and really doesn't have much of a story outside of how-are-these-people-going-escape-Jigsaw's-deadly-traps? The film does offer one unexpected twist at the end, which led to several more sequels, but for the most part, this film set the formula for the many sequels, which was simply a new set of victims and anew set of overly elaborate traps. That was enough to hold my interest, but it's not really enough to call this a good horror film. Donnie Wahlberg, Beverley Mitchell, Shawnee Smith, Tobin Bell, Glenn Plummer, and Dina Meyer provide the solid cast.
May 17, 2017
I Like The Grisly Deaths In The Saw Movies.
May 7, 2017
While not as great a character story as the first, greater insight of Jigsaw, more cringe inducing, and still a great plot.
½ May 3, 2017
My favourite saw movie
April 19, 2017
Maybe a little worse than the first one, but the crew made great use of the location that the victims of Jigsaw are trapped in. The acting is just a middling as the first, but the villain is shown with a lot more dialogue and he nails it pretty well. Overall, less interesting than the first, but it still does a good job of being a solid 'gruesome horror' flick without falling into torture porn category
½ April 16, 2017
4/15/2017 (2): A decent horror flick. The needle scene sure made my skin crawl.
½ March 27, 2017
Not as good as the first movie. Was a let down and isn't really worth watching. The characters aren't memorable or likeable either.
March 20, 2017
A good twist at the end, but other than that this film didn't do much for it's predecessor, or for the character 'Jigsaw' for that matter, totally turning his 'philosophy' backwards and contradicting himself nearly all the way through. Ultimately he is a psycho who enjoys killing, not the 'life-appreciation-teacher' he makes himself out to be. His choice in victims and his reasoning more than support this argument. There are only a few recent 'horror/thrillers' that deserve attention, and 'Saw' was one of them. Unfortunately though it's fallen victim to the Hollywood system and spawned three 'for-the-sake-of-making-them' sequels, thinking that gore and predictable set-pieces make up for lacklustre storytelling.
March 12, 2017
Its ending lives up to the standards set by the original, but Saw II seemingly tries too hard to one-up its predecessor with more characters and traps; however, the story becomes more convoluted and its traps are so-so.
February 26, 2017
seen Saw3 which was real gory, heard 1 & 2 sooo much better
February 19, 2017
Just as good as the first one to me. Again, the genius of Jigsaw it was intrigued me about this movie.
½ February 8, 2017
January 18, 2017
A solid follow-up to the first.
January 4, 2017
Why did they decided to make a sequel?
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