24 Mar 2015


Films have formulas and rules, but how well do films follow those formulas?  Are the slasher film rules true?

Saw (2004) is considered torture porn or gorno film.  But is it also a slasher film?

"Let the game begin." ~ Jigsaw

The following will include spoilers for

Saw (2004)

Rule #1 - There Will Be A Warning...

No warning, which is sort of the point.

Rule #2 - There Will Be T&A

One victim (male) is naked, most are in underwear.  The naked victim is seen naked, but briefly and sped-up so it barely counts.  There are rom-coms with more nudity.

Rule #3 - Death Will Be A Punishment For...

Jigsaw makes specific claims about the crimes of each of his potential victims.
  • Paul Leahy - Faking a suicide attempt to get attention.
  • Mark Wilson - Fraud.
  • Amanda - Drug Addict (assumed).
  • Don Greco - Drug dealer (script)
  • Dr Lawrence Gordon - An affair.
  • Adam - wasting his life.
  • Zep Hindle - unknown.
It should be noted that Dr Gordon's wife and children were also potential victims, though, and seemingly innocent.

A:  SEX - Not on screen, but Dr Gordon would count (and affair being transgression).
B:  NUDITY - Mark, but that was done by the killer so doesn't count.
C:  DRINKING - Not punished.
D:  DRUGS - Probably Amanda and Greco.
F:  CRIME - Greco and Mark.
G:  BEING AN ANNOYING/BEING A COWARD/BEING A SLEEZY GUY - Could apply to a number of characters, mostly Paul and Adam.
H:  BYSTANDERS - The Detectives killed probably count, although they did a search without a warrant and Tapp got weird by the end.

Rule #4 - Never Go...

A:  THE BASEMENT - There are lots of abandoned basementy places.  Few go their by choice.
D:  OUTBUILDINGS - There are lots of abandoned basementy places.  Few go their by choice.
F:  ANYWHERE ALONE - Most people go somewhere alone.

Rule #5 - Order of Death...

A:  THE FIRST PERSON ON SCREEN - Adam was the first person on screen.  Last or second last to die if he dies at all.  (Fail).
First on screen, alive when the film ends.
B:  THE BLACK MAN DIES FIRST - A bunch of white characters die before the two minorite detectives (the white female detective lives.)  (Fail)
C:  THE STONER:  Amanda. Probably more then just pot Survives (Fail)
D:  THE BIMBO - Nil  (NA).
E:  NERDY/FUNNY GUY - Maybe Zep and Adam both killed late. (Pass)
G:  STRONG FEMALE CHARACTER - Amanda who survived.  Although she's the surviving female and does find inner strength to surive she doesn't face down the killer and isn't the center of the film.  (Pass)
H:  THE PROTECTOR - Detective Tapp.  Killed latish  (Pass)
I:  THE SENSITIVE GUY - Adam.  As a surgeon, Gordon my count as a jerk, but he was sensitive by the end  (Pass.)
K:  THE FINAL GIRL - See below.

Order of Death:

1.  (1)  Paul [?]
2.  (2)  Mark [?]
3.  (3)  Greco [?]
4.  (4)  Detective Sing [H]
5.   Detective Tapp (presumably) [H]
6.   Zep Hindle [E]
7.  (5)  Adam (probably) [E/I]
8.  (6)  Dr Gordon (possibly) [I]

I've discounted Tapp and Zep as Jigsaw's victims, because they were killed by other people not specifically because of Jigsaw.  Although Jigsaw didn't personally kill the other victims, he set up their deaths.

Rule #6 - Especially When They Are Most Needed, The Following Things Cannot Be Relied On…

A:  COMMUNICATIONS DEVICES:  The phone they are given can't call out.
B:  LIGHTING:  The lights are OK.
C:  VEHICULAR TRANSPORT - Cars seem fine, but check them before you get in.
D:  YOUR LEGS - While you have them, they're OK.
E:  THE AUTHORITIES – They end up dead.
G:  ESCAPE ROUTES - Probably not quick enough.

Rule #7 - The Final Girl

There is no final girl.  Amanda survives her trap, but is a minor character.  Adam is the closest.  He kills Zep, but doesn't really find inner strength.

Rule #8 - The Killer has a connection to...

A:  LOCATION - He picks them..
B:  THE FINAL GIRL - No final girl.
D:  OTHER VICTIMS - He knew Dr Gordon.
E:  FEMININITY - Not really.
F:  SPECIFIC LOOKThe puppet has one, and the killer sort of does (but not enough to completely spoil the twist ending.)
G: WEAPON - A variety of weapons, but usually a trap where you kill yourself or have to kills someone else

Rule #9 - Evil Never Dies...

A:  ALWAYS KILL THE BAD GUY TWICE - The killer uses this trick a couple of times with the police, and importantly fakes his death for the main trap in the story.
B:  THE BAD GUY LIVES ON - The killer survives and escapes..
C:  EVIL IS IMMORTAL - Nothing says he's immortal, in fact, it seems that he is actually dying.

Rule #10 - The Sequel Will Be Bigger/More Formulaic

The first in a series.

C:  THERE WILL BE MORE T&A - Brief unclear nudity.
D:  MORE AND BIGGER DEATHS - Up to eight deaths, with over the top traps.


Once again, the gorno film looks like a Slasber film but doesn't really follow the rules.

The following rules were followed:  8, 9.
The following rules were partially followed:  2, 3, 4, 5, 6.
The following rules were no followed:  1, 7.

~ DUG.

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