Tuesday, October 02, 2007
A woman wakes up in a coffin. After she kicks and claws for what seems like forever, she manages to escape this predicament only to find herself facing the butt of a rifle and being asked (in a very polite voice), “Do you wish to continue?” She is knocked out. After regaining consciousness she finds herself tied to a tree by her throat and standing precariously on a wobbly makeshift box, which is threatening to collapse at any minute. Lifting up her shirt she finds that her stomach is stitched up. Apparently she has a choice; either undo the stitches and stick her hand into her guts to retrieve a hidden razor to cut herself down, or perish. She takes out the stitches, rummages around in her gut, which is spilling out, gets the razor and attempts to free herself. It does not go well. Is this the opening of SAW IV you ask? Nope. It’s a low-budget, torture-porn offering that was obviously created to cash in on the recent SAW wave.
Fast forward. Hope has just come home from a blind date with a perfect man. After telling her best friend all about it, she goes to sleep only to wake up, you guessed it (see first paragraph). Thus ensues another version of the beginning all over again. Hope manages to free herself from these initial traps, with much gratuitous gore. She has motivation and refuses to be “broken” because her torturer, a man who bears a striking similarity to Van Helsing has also kidnapped her 6-year old daughter and hidden her away.
The film follows Hope and her many attempts at escape. Between these escape attempts, Hope is expected to do such menial tasks as cleaning The Man’s breakfast dishes and tending a pathetic garden. Eventually The Man acquires another woman who joins Hope in this terrible situation. Will the women ever gain the upper hand from this jerk? Will Hope ever see her kid again? Can Hope be “broken”? These are questions you might be mildly interested in having answered.
This is one of those frustrating movies where the heroine has plenty of opportunity to escape but always does the wrong thing. On at least three occasions The Man is either sleeping or knocked out. Rather than bashing his skull in or slitting his throat, she opts to do things like cut his leg. Of course he regains consciousness in all of Hope’s escape attempts and punishes her accordingly. The Man’s motivations are never made clear as he probably only has 10 sentences of dialogue in the entire film. A bleak ending provides zero relief from all we have sat through.