Writer: Patrick Melton, Marcus Dunstan (Screenplay) Patrick Melton, Marcus Dunstan, Thomas Fenton (Story)
Starring: Tobin Bell, Costas Mandylor, Scott Patterson, Betsy Russell, Lyriq bent, Athene Karkanis, Louis Ferreira
Plot: Despite Jigsaw’s death, and in order to save the lives of two of his colleagues, Lieutenant Rigg is forced to take part in a new game, which promises to test him to the limit.
Tagline – It’s a Trap
Runtime: 1 Hour 33 Minutes
There may be spoilers the rest of the review
Verdict: Improving Once Again
Story: Saw IV starts as watch John Kramer’s (Bell) autopsy, but it uncovers a new recording for Lt Mark Hoffman (Mandylor) promising to pass on his work. Hoffman is getting help from FBI agents Peter Strahm (Patterson) and Lindsey Perez (Karkanis) who have been working on the Jigsaw case believing the bigger picture is going on with more than just John and Amanda.
Lt Daniel Rigg (Bent) becoming stressed and distant from his wife with the case learns that Eric (Wahlberg) is still alive and placed into a trap with Hoffman. Rigg gets placed into his own game where he has 90 minutes to save Matthews and Hoffman but with the FBI investigating Rigg becomes the prime suspect in the Jigsaw puzzle along with John’s ex-wife Jill (Russell) who reveals the motivation for John to become Jigsaw.
Thoughts on Saw IV
Characters – In the present time John is dead, but in this chapter we learn what motivated him to start his games or tests if you like, this does bring us to want to sympathise with John. Hoffman is the new lead detective on the case, where he must deal with the FBI turning up but worse for him, he gets caught up in the latest test with Matthews. Agent Strahm is from the FBI, he is searching for Jigsaw team as he believes it can’t have been the two-person operation, he believes someone in the force is involved and that John’s ex-wife is involved. Jill Tuck is John’s ex-wife, she is one of the prime suspects due to her connection to him, now she must give us the story to what motivated John. Rigg is the detective that has seen his friends on the force taken by Jigsaw, it is costing him his marriage so now he must go through the game learning that he can’t save everyone.
Performances – The performance across the board are good with Bell taking a smaller role but showing us, the sympathy needed. Patterson brings us a character we needed, one that knows the game is bigger and will do everything to stop it. The rest bring us the importance to certain moments in the film without being the full stars of the show.
Story – The story continues to build the world that Jigsaw was from, we show that we will be facing more apprentices because Amanda and John couldn’t pull off the traps alone, this keeps us guessing on who it could be as well as teases potential returns of previous characters. The main game about a cop that needs to learn he can’t save everyone does feel like we are learning how John could recruit someone while the FBI investigation is the most interesting side of the film.
Horror/Mystery – The horror comes from the games being played, they are becoming more graphic as we go along. The mystery is a lot more interesting here as we are left wondering who could in fact be the newest member of the team Jigsaw.
Settings – The settings show us how the game can be performed in the small scale location in warehouse which would have no witness to what is going on.
Special Effects – The effects are great here, when it comes to the games you can’t fault the effects team, we also see great moments of cutting between scenes that look flawless.
Final Thoughts – This is a step back in the right direction, the bigger picture is a huge plus for the series as this film opened the doors to so many new directions for the film to go in. the only problem is there are sometimes one too many sub-stories to follow.
Overall: Good addition to the franchise.