SLASH’S SHITFACED SATURDAY
SAW III (2006)
Directed by Darren Lynn Bousman @ 108 minutes.
The film starred;
Tobin Bell as Jigsaw/John Kramer.
Shawnee Smith as Amanda Young.
Angus MacFadyen as Jeff.
Bahar Soomekh as Dr. Lynn Denlon.
Jay LaRose as Troy.
Donnie Wahlberg as Detective Eric Matthews.
Dina Meyer as Detective Allison Kerry.
Mpho Koaho as Tim.
Barry Flatman as Judge Halden
Debra McCabe as Danica.
Costas Mandylor as Detective Hoffman.
Betsy Russell as Jill Kramer.
Leigh Whannell as Adam.
Franky G. as corpse of Xavier
Timothy Burd as dead Obi.
Time to let loose the Gorehounds of hell, and launch ourselves back into the SAW SAGA .
It was directed by Darren Lynn Bousman, who was at first reluctant to jump right on the film, but when he found out it would be a tribute to the original executive producer of the series, Gregg Hoffman.
Former director of the original film, SAW (2004), James Wan, convinced Bousman & pal Leigh Whannell to do the movie.
The script was written by Leigh Whannell, who wanted some flashbacks to help explain some of the conundrums in SAW (2004) & SAW II (2005).
Once an Indie/Hollywood formula works, certain ingredients must remain stable to bring the good luck to the project. The film’s musical score, therefore, was once more, written/done by the multi-talented Charlie Clouser.
Ditto, for the cinematographer, staying with the very capable David A. Armstrong, who had a good track record, got along well with Darren Lynn Bousman, & could work at the breakneck speed Bousman likes.
Taglines on the posters:
Like Father, like Daughter.
Sometimes rules are meant to be broken.
Suffering–you haven’t seen anything yet.
Pain–it’s part of the puzzle.
Blood–it’s the price of freedom.
Death–it’s not that easy.
The film was nominated for Best Horror Film by the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy, & Horror.
The film was cast by Stephanie Gorin, who had worked on the casting for SAW II (2005). She gathered some very good talent.
Tobin Bell continues to reign as GameMaster of SAW scenarios. He had a lot more to do in this movie, and did more than half of it lying in a hospital bed.
Probably the heavy-hitter that was cast in this one was Scottish actor, Angus MacFadyen; he is an actor I have favored & liked for 20 years, classically trained, he is capable of playing it all–Richard Burton, Orson Welles, Crassus in Olivier’s part in the first remake of SPARTACUS (2004) a TVM. Interestingly, he got a lot of notoriety for appearing in the SAW SAGA. He has completed 70 film projects since 1991, including BRAVEHEART (1995), WARRIORS OF VIRTUE (1997), CRADLE WILL ROCK (1999), EQUILIBRIUM (2002), SPARTACUS (2004), SAW IV (2007), WE BOUGHT THE ZOO (2011), & COPPERHEAD (2013).
Shawnee Smith takes center stage as Amanda Young in this one; the Jigsaw disciple.
Donnie Wahlberg returns as Detective Eric Matthews. The producers worked hard at not revealing he was going to be in this one; as he does a kind of prologue & epilogue turn for the story.
Dina Meyer returned as foxy Detective Allison Kerry, with a pivotal part to the plot.
I could not resist, however, including some nice tit-shots from STARSHIP TROOPERS.
Bahar Soomekh is new to the franchise, playing the mysterious Dr. Lynn Devlon, recruited, kidnapped, forced to try and save Jigsaw’s life.
She has completed 23 film projects, most of it good television roles; feature films including CRASH (2004), SYRIANA (2005), SAW IV (2007), & MISSION IMPOSSIBLE III (2006).
Mpho Koaho was also a new member of the group, playing the hapless Tim. He has 45 film credits since 1998, including DOWN IN THE DELTA (1998) THE SALTON SEA (2002), FOUR BROTHERS (2005) DOOMSTOWN (2006), SAW VI (2009), & 24 episodes in 3 season of TV series FALLING SKIES (2011-2013).
Debra McCabe, a Canadian actress, had the plum role of Danica, a victim providing us with the first bone-fide tit-shots in the SAW SAGA. SAW III (2006) was her only Feature film; I thank her for the mammeries.
She has done 34 film projects, 99% of it in television roles, like STARHUNTER (2003), THE 4400 (2007).
Betsy Russell played Jill Kramer,
the gorgeous mysterious ex-wife of Jigsaw/John, everything done in flashbacks.
I did find a lovely tit-shot of hers from some other film; please enjoy.
She has completed 32 film projects since 1982, & she looks fabulous for her age; films include AVENGING ANGEL (1985), BLOODY POM POMS (1988), SAW IV (2007), SAW V (2008), SAW VI (2009), & SAW 3D (2010).
Costas Mandylor has a few scenes in this film as Detective Hoffman. His character becomes more important in the next (4) SAW films. He has 98 film credits since 1989), including MOBSTERS (1991), FIST OF THE NORTH STAR (1995), 87 episodes of TV series PICKET FENCES (1992-96), STEALTH FIGHTER (1999), THE PLEDGE (2001), DINOCROC (2004), SAW IV (2007), SAW V (2008), SAW VI (2009), & SAW 3D (2010).
Barry Flatman plays Judge Halden in this film. He has done a ton of TV roles, 158 film projects since 1976, 90% TV series work; feature films include THE DEAD ZONE (1983), TERMINAL JUNCTION (1996), & A KILLER UPSTAIRS (2005).
Fun & explication regarding SAW (2004) & SAW II (2005), Leigh Whannell returns as Adam, Franky G. returns dead as Xavier, & Tim Burd returns dead & burned to crisp as Obi.
Jay (J) LaRose played the loser Troy, the chained man in the opening sequence of this film. He is pal of Darren Lynn Bousman’s & has appeared in multiple projects with him. He has completed 54 films, including SAW IV (2007), THE TORTURED (2010), INSIDIOUS (2010), THE DEVIL’S CARNIVAL (2012), ROCKABILLY ZOMBIE WEEKEND (2013), & INSIDIOUS 2 (2013).
Enough with the foreplay, bitches, let’s leap lovingly into this SAW III gorefest; ready or not, Esi.
Opening shot a steel door slamming shut:
Amanda: Game over!
Detective Matthews screaming: You fucking bitch, I’ll fucking kill you!!
Great, we start off directly with the action at the end of SAW II.
Cut to Eric Matthews chained up, reaching for his pistol; can’t get it. He pulls off his boot, & flops with it until he snags the gun, pulling it to him; but the clip is empty–(was the gun empty at the end of SAW II?)
At first it is spooky cool visually, the scene lit with only his 4-cell cop’s flashlight. He finds the hacksaw, tries to use it on the chain, but, of course, it’s too dull for the job.
Cut to flash images:
Dr. Gordon’s severed foot.
(Doesn’t his putz-cop remember the key Jigsaw gave him at the end of SAW II? I certainly recall it.)
Cut to Matthews fussing with his foot, but it is too damn dark to see what the hell is going on–does he bash his foot with a pipe–does he hacksaw the foot off at the ankle? We hear him breaking off the foot, the tendons & bones cracking & crackling; lots of screaming.
Roll opening credits for S A W I I I.
We see a cutting torch slicing through a welded up door in the darkness. The door slams to the floor, & several gas-masked SWAT members rush in. SWAT leader: Oh my God; someone call Detective Kerry.
(We, of course, think the cops must have found the corpse of Eric Matthews).
Cut Allison Kerry entering the crime scene; she is met by
Detective Hoffman: It isn’t Eric Matthews.
Kerry: What the fuck happened?
Hoffman: The victim was held in place by several chains; a bomb went off, & these are his body parts all around the room.
Cut to Flashback: The victim is seated in a chair in the middle of the room, secured by eight long chains;
Chain hooked through his mouth, the flesh of both shoulders, in both sets of Lats, in both thighs, in both feet.
Close-up of face with the large chain ring through his lower lip. His upper torso is covered in his own blood.
Cut to CCTV monitor screen; Billy the puppet’s face; John’s voice: Hello Troy. I want to play a game. It will take place in a room not much bigger than you’ve spent most of your life in–a prison cell. Despite the advantages you were given in life, you returned to prison again & again, You are much more comfortable in chains than you are in freedom. Tonight we will see how far you are willing to go to break those chains. Live or die, Troy, make your choice.
Cut to Troy noticing a bomb on the table beside him, with the timer already ticking.
Cut back to that room after Troy is already dead; cops swarming about. Hoffman: He could see the bomb–all he had to do was release himsel from his chains & escape.
Cut back to Troy seeing he had only 1:15 minutes left on the ticking timer. CU with Troy ripping his right hand out of the chain, breaking & shredding it.
Troy screaming jerking his left hand out of the chains, more screaming as we see only 25 seconds left to him, he popped/tore his shoulder chains out, blood spurting hard, just 7 seconds left;
Oh God, fuck, fuck!!!
clock ticks to zero.
Cut back to Kerry looking at the corpse, several severed limbs; arms, leg, head.
Kerry: I really thought this was going to be Eric.
SWAT leader: Right now Eric is a missing person case, not a homicide.
Kerry: It’s all my fault. I see him in my nightmares.
SWAT leader: What I don’t understand is how Jigsaw managed to do this.
He was damn near dead the last time we saw him.
Kerry: And why was the fucking door welded shut? Jigsaw always allows his victims the possibility of escape. This poor bastard couldn’t have got out of here even if he had escaped the trap.
Cut at her apartment, soaking in the bathtub, breasts under the water. Later standing at her steamed up mirror she sees Eric in a reflection.
Cut to Kerry sitting on her bed, surrounded by police files, watching the Hello Troy Jigsaw tape. Suddenly there is another image on the video, herself in a door slit in the background. She tries to use the controls on the VCR, but it does not respond.
Staring at the screen she sees herself in real time. She snags her pistol from a drawer, and fires three shots into the bedroom door. She opens the door slowly, & simultaneously we see her doing this on the CCTV screen. Then we see a dark figure coming up behind her.
Fade to black.
Cut to a larger room. Kerry is lashed into a Rib-Breaking Trap.
She awakens staring at a strange beaker of bubbling orange liquid suspended in front of her. There are four chains locked to her neck & wrists. Billy the Jigsaw puppet’s face appears as a reflection in the orange liquid vat.
Cut to a CCTV monitor, Billy Puppet speaks (John’s voice):
Hello Kerry. I want to play a game. Up until now you have spent your life among the dead. You are good at this, because you, like them, are already dead–on the inside. I believe you want to join your true family, indeed your only family, in death. This trap corset is hooked into your rib cage, & by the time this tape is finished, you will have 1 minute to find a way out. At the end of that minute, you should know better than anyone what will happen then. There is a key that will unlock the harness cage. It’s right in front of you. All you have to do is reach in & take it out; but do so quickly since the acid is already dissolving the key. Make your choice.
Kerry screaming, struggling against the chains & rib harness.
Camera whirling around her before she begins concentrating on the glass vat–we can see the key in the bottom of the liquid. Screaming, she puts her right hand into the vat; we hear the acid burning the flesh, see the blood turning the liquid red as she pulls her hand out; hearing more screams as
Whirling Jump Cuts:
Her plunging her hand back into the vat, with the flesh being burned off her forearm & hand, until she grasps the key. But her hand is shaking terribly, fumbling, looking for the harness lock, until she drops the steaming key.
Cut to a glimpse of someone watching at the crack of a door.
Cut to her holding her arms up, clutching the chains like a trapeze artist just as the timer runs out & the spring harness breaks & rips apart her chest, her ribs hanging like pork bits in a meat market,
& she collapses just as her intestines boil out on the floor,
leaving her alone swinging like a hog on a meathook.
Cut to Dr. Lynn Denlon sitting on the edge of a bed, with a sour-pussed man sitting alongside her.
Lynn: I have to be at the hospital at 9.
Husband: I thought you started at 11.
Lynn: They changed things on me at the last minute. I have to go. I’ll take a shower at work.
Husband: I want a divorce.
Cut to the ER at the hospital, folks pushing a crash cart.
Nurse: Where’s Dr. Denlon?
Cut to Lynn appearing; we see a little boy is the patient. Another doctor wants open his chest. She disagrees, & does a Trach surgery right there, saving the child’s life.
The charge nurse takes her aside, tells her to go upstairs & see a shrink: There’s no room in this ER for a psych case. Lynn stares at her blankly.
Cut to Dr. Denlon in the locker room. She tries to leave, but, of course, the door is mysteriously locked (& there is nobody else in the large usually crowded locker room). She wanders about, saying: Is there anybody here?
She tries to use her cell phone, but before she can, she is suddenly attacked by a person in a hoodie wearing a pig’s mask (come on, jeesh, how was the pig’s mask brought along, & how was the abductor going to get the doctor out of the hospital?)
Cut to someone’s POV unlocking a chain link gate, & walking into a shadowy chamber, which we already know is another of Jigsaw’s lairs.
Flash cuts to several pig masks on shelves, chains, ropes, hooks.
Cut to Lynn lashed tight into a wheel chair. The lights come on just as Dr. Denlon comes to & begins to struggle against her restraints. We still do not see who the kidnapper is. She removes the hoodie; its Amanda Young in a blood red blouse.
Lynn shakes out of her gag, and yells for help. Amanda does not seem to notice. She approaches Lynn holding a hunting knife.
Amanda: Bitch, are you going to behave?
She then pushes Lynn, lashed tightly in her wheelchair into another room, where we find Jigsaw/John in a hospital bed, sipping on an O2 hose:
Hello Dr. Denlon, you may not remember me. I was a guest at your hospital once, do you recall?
Amanda puts a medical chart on Lynn’s lap, open to Dr. Gordon’s diagnosis of John’s terminal inoperable brain cancer.
As you can see, my prognosis isn’t good. You once told me in a cold clinical way that I was a dead man walking. Looking at me, how long would you say I have left to live? LOOK AT ME!
Lynn: Based on your chart, I’d say not long.
John: Death is a surprise party, unless you’re already dead on the inside. You are leaving your husband, neglecting your children, living on anti-depressants. You have every advantage in life. Now I want to play a game. If you break the rules, you will die. You’re being tested, your will is being tested.
Amanda picks up a heavy explosive collar.
Can you keep someone alive by following the rules?
Amanda snaps the bulky collar on Dr. Denlon.
The device you are wearing is linked to my heart rate monitor. The moment my heartbeat flat lines, or you move out of range an explosion will tear your head off–our lives will end at the same time.
Amanda; On that other set of monitors there is another subject, who must face a series of tests. It is your task to keep John alive until the subject completes all of his tasks. When that happens, & John is still breathing, you will be free to go.
John: So, Lynn, you are a critical part of the puzzle. Amanda, it’s time to start the game.
Amanda leaves the area.
Cut to a man in shadows struggling inside of some crate. We see that the crate is suspended in the air. The man finds, of course, & clicks on a cassette recorder:
Hello Jeff. For the past several years you have become a shell of your former self. You want vengeance against the drunk driver that killed your only son, a killer, to your dismay, that was set free. Today it will be you who will be put on trial. To escape from where you are, you will have to face a series of 4 tests. After you complete the tests, I promise you that you will come face to face to the man who is responsible for the death of your child. Your ultimate test will be to see if you can forgive him. You had better hurry though; in 2 hours the doors will all double-lock & this place will become your tomb. Let the game begin.
Jeff thrashes wildly, & the crate crashes to the floor.
Cut to Jeff in the past, pretending to confront the drunk driver;
Don’t you fucking even know who I am?
He holds out a pistol & dry fires empty chambers, then tips up a bottle of nearly empty whiskey, staring at a shelf of his son’s stuffed animals.
Cut to Jeff bursting into his young daughter’s bedroom:
Where is it? How many times do I have to tell you to leave it alone?
He jerks a stuffed monkey out of her arms.
You don’t touch things in Dylan’s room.
Cut to Jeff sitting on his son’s bed. His little daughter comes in weeping;
I’m sorry, Daddy, I’m so sorry.
The daughter leaves the room, and suddenly, a figure leaps out from behind the door, wearing a pig’s mask & a hoodie.
Cut back to Jeff on the floor, the broken crate boards all around him. he wanders about, Hello, hello; still wearing his pajamas & robe–then He finds a note in a pretty velveteen box, OPEN THE DOOR, JEFF. There is a ripped picture of himself on the back of the note. He notices there are several cameras high on the walls tracking him. He picks up a board, & keeps searching.
Cut to Amanda watching Dr. Denlon do some prep for her forced surgery task. She is distracted by glancing into monitors too.
Amanda walks in as Dr. Denlon is examining John:
It’s begun, he’s out of the box.
Dr. Denlon: I tell you his brain is herniating & he desperately needs an operation to compress the swelling.
Amands slaps Lynn in the face:
You need to start paying attention, bitch. No one’s going to a hospital.
Lynn: I can’t perform miracles!
Amanda: You stupid cunt–why don’t you tell me something I don’t know.
Lynn: Without proper drugs & procedures he will die!
Amanda: If he dies, you die too. Bitch, he chose you, I didn’t!
John: Quit threatening the doctor, Amanda; don’t forget the rules.
John begins to throw up, & then goes into a seizure. Lynn tells Amanda to give him the O2 while she holds him down.
John nearly comatose.
Amanda holding him down.
Lynn searching the greasy cabinets for drugs.
Amanda looks terrified.
Suddenly he seems to stabilize; opens his eyes.
Lynn: He needs an operation.
Amanda: OK, but we do it right here.
Lynn: I’ll need anesthetic & a power drill.
Cut back to Jeff, still holding his board, & wandering around. Note: the camera work, & lighting here are way too dark; we barely see his face at all.)
There is a sign painted in large red letters: FACE YOUR FEARS. He opens a door & stumbles into a meat locker, where an eerie blue light is all there is to see by,
where he finds a woman, naked, chained upright, with her arms in the air. She has lovely perky blue breasts with azure nipples, like an R-rated Avatar lovely–the door slams shut behind Jeff, of course.
Cut to a zoom-in 4-count tit shot; first one in the SAW SAGA. The woman looks up at Jeff. He looks horrified (sometimes having blue tits shoved in your face can do that to you.)
Woman: Please, let me go–why are you doing this to me?
Jeff tries to use his key on her chain lock, but, of course, it does not fit. He flips on the cassette recorder he conveniently finds on a tray.
John: Welcome to your first test, Jeff. For the last 3 years you have cursed of all those you thought were responsible for the death of your son. You fantasized that those accountable would pay for their crime. This woman chained in place in front of you can no longer run–as she did on the day your son was hit.
Flash Cuts: Son Dylan at a playground.
Her name is Danica Scott, the only witness present at your son’s demise.
Cut to Dylan lying dead on the road.
Jeff screams, & Danica now looks horrified;
If not for her cowardice, she could have brought your son’s killer to justice. Now it is you who can bring her to justice. You alone can grant her the gift of life. Before she freezes to death, behind the pipes against the back wall you can find the key to unlock her chains. Save yourself, or save another; make your choice.
Water begins showering the woman from nearby pipes, as she screams & Jeff stands there unable to move it seems.
Woman: I didn’t do anything to you!
(As she twirls in her arm chains, there is shot after shot of her tits).
Jeff: Yes, that’s exactly it, you did nothing, & Dylan, my 8 year old son, died in my arms.
The woman being sprayed from both sides, screaming, as her heaving breasts were bobbling–as ice begins to form on her blue body.
Jeff standing there, just watching.
Danica: I’m so sorry. Look at me–I’m fucking freezing!
Jeff begins reaching through the pipes, swiping at the dangling key ( key to what, her chains, the locked door?) He, as we have come to expect, cannot reach the key (making me wonder how the hell the trapmaster was able to place it there?)
Danica freezing to death, ice forming on her eyelids & nipples. He touches her cheek, & it crackles like brittle glass.
Jeff struggling to reach the key again & again. Finally with great effort, he retrieves it. Looking at her, she looks like a blueberry popsicle, but he tries to unlock her chains anyway. But, gosh, it is too late, she is frozen stiff; he has failed to save her.
Cut to Jeff opening the door (wasn’t it locked?) & escaping.
Immediately he finds another red velveteen box, with another note: ONE BULLET WILL END IT ALL, along with a single cartridge, & another ripped piece of photograph; this one of Dylan.
Cut back to the operating theater within the Lair. Dr. Denlon is carrying a large tray of instruments. We notice a red chainsaw sitting on the bench behind her. She wanders around a bit, looking at axes, swords, knives, machetes, chains, ropes, handcufs, & a mannequin head inside the original trap that Amanda escaped from; open books on torture, hand-drawn diagrams of various Jigsaw traps; (yet why the hell was she on a walkabout? Time is essential; if John dies, she dies).
Amanda appears, & she hands Lynn a battle axe, taunting her to kill her way out of there, & foolishly try to take her explosive collar off; obviously Amanda is a sick bullying bitch, nearly out-of-control.
Cut to the past, John sitting at a work bench, painting the head of one of the Billy puppets, a photo of Amanda on the bench, alongside a diagram of her head trap from SAW (2004).
Cut to the past, Amanda wearing the head trap in the test room where the test happened, John on tape telling her she needed to cut a key out of the stomach of another inmate, in order to unlock her head trap.
Recreation of Amanda’s game in SAW (2004).
John building the head trap. John putting the trap on an unconscious Amanda. Amanda raising the shirt of the still alive other inmate, & we see the large black question mark painted on his belly. Amanda leaving the room, free of the head trap.
Cut to John in his hospital bed.
Amanda: He made it through the Freezer Room; he tried to save her.
Cut to a close-up of a power drill.
Cut back to John’s face:
Amanda, there are some things I need for you to do for me. In my desk, in the middle drawer, there is an envelope with your name on it.
Amanda: She has decided to do the procedure on you.
John: Yeah, looks like it.
Amanda: I can’t do this!
John: Yes, you can. You’re stronger now. I believe in you.
< Some odd writing here for Amanda; maybe she is supposed to be manic- depressive, for one minute she is a ruthless hard-as-nails murdering bitch, & the next she is a cowering, whiny, frightened, insecure little girl.>
Cut back to Jeff, finding a red tricycle, like the one Dylan rode;
Flash of an image of the dead Dylan, like the one Billy rides.
Flash to the Billy puppet on the floor next to the trike.
Jeff picks up the Billy doll, and it laughs its nutso mechanical laugh, like Chucky with a mouthful of cashews. He tosses it roughly to the floor, & walks off still hearing Billy laugh & laugh.
Cut Jeff approaching another large door, with a sign hand-painted on it in bold red letters–TIME TO LET GO. He pushes the door open, enters the room, & of course, the door locks behind him.
Voice: Who’s there? I hear you. Help me, please. I am down here. Get me the fuck out of here!
Jeff climbs a ladder stair well, & finds a dangling cassette recorder. He sees a man dressed for the office, lying in the bottom, chained up with a metal collar, of an 8’ wide barrel, 10’ deep.
John: When the judge who presided over your son’s case, sentenced your son’s killer so lightly, your soul never recovered. Now you have the power to sentence his soul straight to hell–or you can forgive him. The key that will unlock his collar is hidden in one of your son’s stuffed animals, that you have clung to for far too long (his son’s toys are all lined up on shelf below him; which we didn’t notice earlier.) They are sitting in an incinerator, & if you flip the switch a fire will destroy them all; then you can get the key to help free this man. He doesn’t have much time left, Jeff. Let the game begin.
An overhead chain brings a meat-hooked large pig’s carcass out & over the barrel & the judge, & as it tips forward it pours the putrified guts & fresh maggots down onto him. Pig after pig is rolled out & dumped into the barrel onto the man. (one technical issue for me is that each pig after dumping its innards drops off the hook; but all we see is putrid liquids, & some pig entrails, & floating maggots– no pig heads, bones, etc; quite the oversight actually.)
Jeff: You probably don’t remember me, judge. Maybe you remember Timothy Young, the driver who killed my son.
The steaming pig’s innards & accompanying maggots are beginning to fill up the barrel, more than half covering the judge. The stench seems overpowering, making Jeff cover his mouth & nose.
You only gave him a 6 month sentence–what you would normally give for a fucking overdue parking ticket!
Judge: Don’t become a killer yourself! Please, help me.
Cut to pig after pig rolling out & dumping their foul gutloads onto him. Jeff crawls back down the ladder, & stands looking at Dylan’s toys.
Dylan in his lap.
Dylan at play.
Dylan at Christmas.
The judge moaning & pleading for his life.
Jeff screams at an overhead camera: Fuck you! to Jigsaw,
Shut the fuck up! to the judge.
He finally gives in & pushes the switch ON for the incinerator, & watches weeping as his son’s only extant possessions go up in fierce flames.
CU of the key flopping down into the ashes. He scoops it up. (oddly it is not hot at all). By this time about 37 pigs have been rolled out on hooks & dumped their putrid load on the judge; his face was barely up out of the liquid, entrails, & pig blood.
Jeff climbs down into the barrel, the death goo is over his knees as he struggles to unlock the collar–which he finally does, actually saving the judge.
Cut to Amanda, playing with her hair, watching the events on monitors.
Cut back to John in bed, with Dr. Denlon prepping for surgery.
Jump Cuts ( like 35 of them)
Dr. Denlon checking out her crude instruments, a skull saw, power drill, blood drip pans, 20 different sized scissors & scalpels, bone knives.
Amanda walks in & observes.
Doctor scrubs up with alcohol pads, & begins shaving the top of John’s head, scowling a lot, her collar lights blinking.
Amanda: He made it through the second test. The judge is still alive.
John: Yes, it’s going as I expected.
The doctor explains what she is going to do, without expression, as if sharing a recipe for blood pudding.
And there can be no anesthetic; the patient must be conscious.
Lynn begins the surgery, her hands shaky, cutting out a 3-sided wedge of scalp, and folding it over, out of the way; then rinses the skull with rubbing alcohol until it shines like teeth implants.
She picks up the power drill, and drills four corner holes in a rectangle, then picks up the bone saw.
Lynn: You will hear a lot of ringing, but I need you to remain very still.
She begins cutting away the skull, blood spatters her face, Amanda has to look away (I would have guessed her character would have dug watching the procedure). She removes the skull cap, cleans away the viscus, and we are looking directly at John’s throbbing brain.
John at first stabilizes, remaining conscious, then his vital signs dip, and he begins to fade.
The doctor rushes around picking up instruments.
Cut to John’s dream memories:
He is walking with his lovely blond wife in a park; they seem so in love.
He recalls an early meeting with Amanda.
John: I need you to give yourself up completely to me, every cell in your body, every thought–is that understood.
John sending her out to kidnap Dr. Gordon.
Cut to present, Amanda on her bed, in her corner of the lair, opening up some kind of toolbox.
Cut back to a “behind the scenes” look at the prep work John & Amanda did with Adam & Dr. Gordon in SAW (2004).
Adam using his camera flash, searching for the intruder in his apartment.
Amanda in the present, her pants down to her knees, her white panties with a red stripe in them contrasting to her blood red blouse, cutting her thigh with a large hunting knife.
Amanda in the past wearing an orange jump suit & the wild Pig mask.
Amanda playing the game with the 7 others in SAW II.
Amanda dragging Adam into the original toilet killing room, shackling his right foot.
John in t-shirt and flowered boxer shorts, painting the fake blood on his face and shaved head, prepping himself to play the corpse in the middle of the room between Adam & Dr. Gordon. They fill the nasty bathtub with rusty water, & lift Adam up into it.
We get a glimpse of Dr. Gordon lying shackled up on the opposite side of the bathroom ( but bad choice, his hair is black, not blond like with Carey Elwes.)
John: Time to start our game.
He injects himself with something that will relax his muscles & slow his heartbeat.
Amanda flips off the lights, and closes the door.
Cut back to her bandaging her thigh in the present. (never clear as to why in hell she needed to slice open her own thigh; little S&M perhaps?)
Cut to Dr. Denlon putting her wedding ring back on, wiping off some of the blood on her face. We see that John’s head is bandaged. He seems to be alive & resting well.
Amanda comes in, bends down & hugs & kisses John.
Lynn: He can’t hear you. He doesn’t even know you’re there.
Evil Amanda whirls around and chokes the doctor, backing her up to a bench. She reaches for the pistol tucked into the elastic of her pants.
John: Amanda, stop that. You need to leave us alone. Doctor, I apologize for her behavior, but she swims in my sea, and her emotions are her weakness.
Cut to the past, with Amanda re-entering the toilet killing room, using a flashlight (why didn’t she just turn on the lights?). She comes up to Adam, and shakes him awake; I will help you, free you!
Then she puts a plastic bag over his head & begins smothering him. He fights, but she is strong, & soon is the victor.
Cut back to the present; Jeff & the Judge, who is wearing his pig’s blood spattered yellow silk tie. Jeff conveniently finds another red velveteen box, and another Note: ONE STEP CLOSER TO YOUR REVENGE. There is a ripped pic of his daughter on the back of it. He pulls out the other two pieces, and we see Jeff with Dylan & his daughter.
Judge: I am sorry about your son, Jeff, but vengeance only makes things worse, makes your pain greater.
Jeff loads the single bullet into a semi-automatic pistol left with the note. He opens up another large door, & immediately we see a black man tethered to a mechanical crucifix.
He is wearing a head trap, & there is a cassette recorder around his neck.
John: Hello Jeff. If you are listening to this that means the confrontation you have dreamed of is finally unfolding. This man is a symbol of death. I present him to you now, or as just another simple human being in peril. His name is Timothy Young, you do recognize him. He is a 27 year old man whose life changed drastically the day your son died; the day he hit & killed your son.
The judge enters the room.
Dylan on his bike.
A car bearing down on the child.
The day he made his terrible mistake.
Tim is weeping in anguish.
You still believe he didn’t fully pay for that mistake, & now is your chance to make him pay. The device he is strapped into is my personal favorite trap. I call it the Rack. You know the body is a marvelous thing. Do you realize how much an arm or leg can twist before ripping apart. But still, he might live. To your right is a box, & in the back of the box is a key; but it is tied to a shotgun. Ask your self if you are ready to take a bullet for the man who killed your son. Make your choice.
Several CU of the Judge being horrified, confused.
The door slams shut, & the death machine starts up (CU of huge gears turning, hands & feet beginning to twist terribly, breaking bones, shredding tendons. The judge reaches into the box for the key. Jeff stands idly by.
Judge: You’ve got to help him, Jeff. Doing nothing still makes you an accomplish to his death.
He rushes up to the machine, & tries to stop the gears with his bare hands; pretty lame useless move on his part.
Jeff: I’ve wanted to kill him every day for 3 years. I wanted to kill you too. Maybe I am an accomplish to murder.
Then he carefully reaches into the box, & snags the key. The shotgun goes off, slaying the judge. Jeff is searching frantically for where to put the key, but before he can locate the lock,
the machine has broken Tim’s back, & twisted both arms & legs in two, & has twisted his head half off.
Cut to Amanda watching all this on a monitor.
John to the Doctor; Don’t you think it would be wise to engage me in conversation for your own sake? Matrimony has always fascinated me–husbands barely able to stand looking at their wives, wives lying on their backs for perfect strangers, bearing children only to neglect them.
Doctor; My marriage has survived more suffering than you can imagine.
John: Suffering? You haven’t seen anything yet.
Doctor: You are a fucking murderer.
John: I have killed no one. I despise murderers.
Amanda comes back in, & John sends her away again.
John: You will make it through this, Lynn, & one day you will thank me, just as Amanda did.
Meanwhile Amanda goes to John’s desk, & pulls out the large envelope with her name on it.
Jeff moving along a corridor in anguish.
Amanda weeping after reading the letter from John.
Lynn begging for her freedom.
Jeff shuffling along the hallway.
Amanda putting her pistol back into her pants.
Amanda re-entering the room; He’s completed the 3rd test.
John: Congratulations, Lynn, you’re free to go.
Amanda: Yeah, but he’s not all the way done yet.
John: Take her collar off, Amanda, let her go.
Amanda: I told you, he isn’t finished yet.
John: Lynn is much more important than you know. Let her go!
Amanda: I said NO–(cocking her pistol, aiming it at Lynn): She doesn’t deserve to live. You gave her control over me–Fuck you!
Cut to the past: Detective Eric Matthews is dragging his bloody stump on his right leg, leaves the bathroom. Amanda, still in the corridors, hears him & stops. They come face to face, & he leaps onto her. They tussle, but Eric is still strong, & he beats her down: Where is my son, you junkie bitch? She stomps on his stump, which makes him let her go; & she escapes.
He yells after her: Fuck you, you stupid bitch–you are nothing! You are nothing! ( Sadly this fight, lasting several minutes, was jump cut edited, and shot in dim light, so we could not make out much of the mayhem. When a director does this, it always pisses me off.)
Cut to the present:
John: You left him for dead, but I cleaned up your mistakes.
Amanda: God damn it, John, now you are telling me to save this bitch’s life, on the dumb assed principles of one of your stupid games.
John: Be very careful, Amanda, you are close to a precipice.
Cut to Jeff, wandering the hallways, slamming things with a steel pipe.
Amanda; No one ever changes, ever truly learns anything. It’s all bullshit! Even I am just a pawn in one of your fucking games!
Cut to Jeff, finding another note, & another key:
OPEN THE DOOR. He opens a locked gate door.
Amanda: I don’t mean anything to you.
John: You mean everything to me.
Amanda: You’re a liar, fuck you! Why is she so important to you.
Cut to Jeff, finding another note, LAST CHANCE. He finds & loads another pistol. (wait a minute, where is the other loaded pistol he had?)
Cut back to John: Your time is running out.
Cut to Jeff entering the main warehouse section of the Lair.
John: Think about what we’ve done, about our dreams.
Jeff bursts into their space, looks at Dr. Denlon, & says, Lynn?
Amanda shoots Lynn, who falls into Jeff’s arms.
John: You have just murdered Jeff’s wife!
Jeff shoots Amanda in the neck, & she slumps to the floor, holding her neck wound.
John, raving on: The whole time I was testing you. You could never take over my life’s work, because your games were un-winable. All your subjects became your victims.
Cut to Kerry in her rib cage trap, seeing Amanda standing in front of her wearing the red Jigsaw hood & cape, just as the machine tore the detective to pieces.
John: I wanted you to succeed, to be the one.
John: Game over.
Jeff points his pistol at John.
John: Have you learned nothing tonight? You know now that killing me will only add to your misery. You can’t kill me, Jeff.
Jeff, grimacing, pulls the trigger several times on an empty gun.
John: Think, Jeff. I can get an ambulance for Lynn in 4 minutes. If you move her now, she will die. Would you like to take her to safety? This is your last test, Jeff. You can kill me, or you can forgive me.
Jeff is holding a buzz saw blade, which he drops to the floor.
John: Which is it to be, live or die, Jeff, make your choice.
Jeff: I forgive you.
Then he lifts up a Saws-All.
John smiles broadly.
Jeff slices open John’s throat. Holding the wound, John reaches over to a tray next to him, & snaps on a cassette tape;
Jeff, this was the final test of forgiveness. If you’re listening to this, then you have failed, & now you must pay the price. I am the only person who knows where your daughter is being held. She is already running out of air. If you want to get her back, you will have to play one more game.
40 Jump Cuts:
Flash moments from both SAW (2004), & SAW II (2005).
Close-up of the heart monitor for John going flatline.
Last shot, Lynn’s head being blown into apple butter.
–Roll the End Credits.
[Damn, it looks like Jigsaw/John really bit the big one, that he really is dead. How will they film the next four SAW movies?]
TRIVIA: The producers of this film asked the producers of SCARY MOVIE IV if they could use their bathroom set, since it was an exact replica of the sets used in SAW (2004), & SAW II (2005). The actress in the nude scene, Debra McCabe is wearing a mirkin (pubic wig) to preserve some degree of modesty. Ironically, since they had to make the “freezer room” set quite warm for her comfort, later they had to add the actor’s breath digitally. This is not, it was pointed out, the first use of nudity in the franchise–just the first tit-shot, female nudity. In SAW (2004), where there is a victim covered in a flammable gel, he was completely nude as well; can’t say as I really noticed.
The pig carcasses were made of foam rubber, & later the hog props were filled with disinfected maggots. Tobin Bell said that this was his favorite trap in the entire series. Prop master, Jim Murray, coated the pigs used in the Judge’s trap with honey, to help the maggots stick to it for the close up shots (which were cut out of the version I watched; but thank God all the tit-shots were left in).
As in the previous films, only the actors who appeared in the final scene were ever given complete scripts. This film was highly anticipated by SAW fans. 1000 posters were made up for the American Red Cross, & they sold for $20 a piece.
They were printed up from a vat of red ink. Tobin Bell added two vials of his own blood to the ink for publicity.
Like SAW II, this film was shot entirely in a warehouse studio in Toronto. Costas Mandylor character was named Hoffman as a tribute to producer Gregg Hoffman who died suddenly before SAW II opened.
Shawnee Smith & Bahar Soomekh are good friends in real life.
The film had to be re-edited seven times before the hard assed MPAA was willing to reduce the NC-17 rating down to another hard R.
Tobin Bell & Shawnee Smith spent several weeks hanging out together to increase their on-screen closeness (not sure the chemistry was enhanced much). Screenwriter Leigh Whannell actually became physically ill watching some of the scenes that were shot.
Internationally, this became the highest grossing SAW movie, making 200 million dollars world-wide. The film was shot in 32 days; each SAW, so far, has raised a larger budget, and had a longer shooting schedule; residuals from success I suppose. Leigh Whannell was on the set for the whole shoot, doing re-writes & finishing some scenes just before they were filmed. The brain surgery scene, the most graphic one in the movie, passed the MPAA standards easily, as they felt it was medically accurate.
Bahar Soomekh had nightmares for the first month she was on the film. Bousman had not met actor Angus MacFadyen until the first day of shooting.
Bousman works fast, completing 40 set-ups and 4 locations on the first day.
He uses detailed storyboarding to steamline things. Amanda was not supposed to grab Lynn by the throat in the last scene, which startled Bahar, who made up the line, “You fucking freak!”
The freezer room game was supposed to be using a male police officer, but then they wisely changed it to the female witness character; originally she was just supposed to be in a wet t-shirt & panties.
Rotten Tomatoes rated the film at 28% Critic’s Approval with 71% Audience Approval; so much for the power of the critic; word-of-mouth works, I guess.
Scott Foundas of LA WEEKLY wrote: “All told, this is a more affecting study in grief, guilt, & human frailty than Babel.”
Brian Holcomb of KINETOFILM wrote: “Images jump, blip, strobe, & shock like an epileptic seizure–all the result of Bousman’s lack of trust in Whannell’s screenplay.” (I have to agree, Brian; jump cut editing is not my favorite film tool.)
Rob Humanick of PROJECTION BOOTH wrote: “Face Your Fears–a lesson worthy of praises, if the film preaching them were not so completely full of shit.”
Felix Vasquez Jr. of CINEMA CRAZED wrote: “The real power of SAW III lies not in the gore, torture, or tension, but in the troubled relationship between Jigsaw & Amanda.”
Tim Brayton of ANTAGONY & ECSTASY wrote: “This film is just nihilistic, amoral, self-congratulatory wanking.”
Chris Alexander of RUE MORGUE MAGAZINE wrote: “The only brains on display are the ones that get drilled out of human skulls.”
URBAN CINEPHILE CRITICS wrote; “If you found Hannibel Lector’s brain cooking scenes too much, then beware of SAW III–but if you are a hardcore fan of gory versions of horror–this one will be an icon essential.”
MY RATING: I’m kind of conflicted on judging this sequel, this third entry in the SAW SAGA. As before, I miss original director James Wan, who is not so fond of jump cuts, hand-held whirling shots, dim lighting as is the new director Darren Lynn Bousman.
For me, Whannel’s script, all his, not a collaboration with Bousman or Wan, suffers from rushed writing, and poor blue-penciling. The obligatory surprise ending did work fairly well, but I just did not believe the motivations of the main characters, Jeff & Amanda; especially Amanda, who was more schizophrenic than she needed to be. I am tiring a bit of the oversimplified preaching that comes along with the Jigsaw “I want to play a game” tapes; they are beginning, after hearing 16 of them in the first three films, to sound too much alike. And if we only keep using the find & get the key hooks to each trap, it will become less engaging for me. Like so many things in life, we seem to have paid more for this one, but got back less. I would rate the film at 6/10 stars. Here’s hoping SAW IV (2007) will reinstate some of the old SAW vigor.