A new Saw film has reliably haunted theaters every Halloween starting in 2004, creating a wildly successful horror franchise that some have dubbed "torture porn." That tradition will purportedly end with this weekend's release of Saw 3D: The Final Chapter. Are critics sorry to say goodbye to moralistic anti-hero Jigsaw and his complicated traps? (Watch the Saw 3D trailer)
It's time to say goodbye
"Saw 3D is the [same] tired old set of tricks," says Drew Taylor at IndieWire. "You've seen high school productions of Bye Bye Birdie with more impressive sets than this."
Completists are obliged to see it
"It does attempt to bring the Saw saga full circle in a mildly satisfying way," says Krystal Clark at ScreenCrave. "If you’ve followed the franchise from the beginning, you might as well cough up the money to see how it all ends."
Nostalgia for Saws past is already setting in
From the "the inconstancy of Jigsaw's schemes" to the "insanely convoluted" flashbacks... I will miss the series," says Scott Mendelson at The Huffington Post. "Warts and all, there was something weirdly special about the Saw series," and "the franchise as a whole stands out as a unique bit of horror filmmaking."
It could rise again
"The central storyline is starting to feel really played out, but there's a palpable sense of actual fun to this alleged final film," says Luke Y. Thompson at E! Online. "Saw 3D is a fair enough victory lap, and it's unreasonable to think that such a profitable franchise won't be revisited at some point."
Especially if it cashes in
"Expect Jigsaw to go out on top" at the box office this weekend, says S.T. VanAirsdale at Movieline. If it brings in $30 million, "you can count" on there being another Saw flick down the line.
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- Obama just kneecapped Jeb Bush and Chris Christie's 2016 prospects
- It's official: The religious right is calling it quits
- 43 TV shows to watch in 2014
- The dangerously childish morality of liberal ObamaCare supporters
- How to be the most productive person in your office — and still get home by 5:30 p.m.
- How science is accelerating our search for alien life
- 10 classic Sesame Street moments we wouldn't show today's kids
- Why insects are the future of food
- The myth of the stay-at-home dad
- The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 1: 10 major differences between the book and the movie
Subscribe to the Week