Here is my ranking (from least favourite to most favourite) of the films within the Saw franchise, with a short explanation accompanying each:
(Side note: There’s a little cop-out involved…)
#7 – Saw 3D/VII
I remember coming out of the cinema and being relieved and annoyed at the same time as to how they tried to wrap everything up yet decided to leave it open to sequels. For that, the bad 3D, the less than realistic blood and general un-sawness it is ranked last.
#6-2 – Saw II to VI
Here is my cop-out – I’m grouping Saw II through to Saw VI together without distinguishing between them. This post has been on the shelf for a while and I’ve avoided skipping past it because my method at the moment is to go along the literal shelf from franchise to franchise. It’s just been near impossible to decide on a ranking that satisfies my own mind, let alone makes sense for readers.
The problem for me has been that the mythology and storylines across the franchise and between installments makes it difficult to separate each one completely to judge it on its own merits (what with III/IV happening concurrently and V/VI trying to move the franchise forward and tie up lose ends under a new writing team).
If I had the time to re-watch them maybe I would be able to break them down, but for now I can’t and that frustrates me as much as it may frustrate you…
#1 – Saw
When I first imagined this post, Saw was my number one. Then as I thought about the franchise more and more I realised that I didn’t enjoy it as much as I did many of its sequels. However, unlike its sequels it isn’t bogged down in convoluted storylines and thus can stand on its own – maybe how it should have been left.
It isn’t the torture porn that the franchise is now remembered for: it is smart. The games. The twists. It was original and still works. There’s a reason that viewers flocked to see it and the franchise generally sticks to a high standard – not veering off into hell, space or magic.
What remains to be seen is how Saw VII will affect what has come before. Will it be a reboot? Will it resurrect dead characters? Or will it follow on from the end of Saw VII with a new games-master at the helm? I wait with bated breath…