Saw II is the second installment of the seven-part Saw film series. The entire film was shot over a span of 25 days. It was released in most parts of the world on October 28, 2005, but not released in Australia until December 1, 2005. Darren Lynn Bousman took over directing duties, and also co-wrote the story's script with Leigh Whannell, the original film's co-writer.
The film features the antagonist of the previous film, the Jigsaw Killer, finally being apprehended, but trapping the arresting officer in one of his own games while showing another "game" of eight people in progress at the same time. It also explored the character's back story, explaining why he became a serial killer.
- Oh yes... There will be blood
- New game. Different pieces
- We dare you again
Michael Marks , a police informant, awakens to find a spike-filled mask locked around his neck. A videotape informs him that he has one minute to retrieve the key from behind his right eye with a scalpel, but he cannot bring himself to do so and is killed when the mask closes. Detective Eric Matthews is later called to the scene by Detective Allison Kerry when she discovers a message for him. Initially reluctant to become involved with the case, Eric decides to join Kerry and Sergeant Daniel Rigg in leading a SWAT team to an abandoned steel factory, where they find John Kramer , who is weak from cancer, as well as computer monitors showing eight people, including Daniel Matthews, Eric's son, and Amanda Young , the only known survivor of John's games. They are all trapped inside a house and have only two hours before a nerve agent filling the house kills them, but John assures Eric that he will find his son in a "safe, secure state simply talks with him alone. Pressured by Kerry, Eric reluctantly agrees in order to buy time for the police tech team to arrive and track the signal from the house.
The eight victims - Daniel, Amanda, Xavier Chavez, Jonas Singer, Addison Corday, Laura Hunter, Obi Tate, and Gus Colyard- - are told by micro cassette recorder that antidotes are hidden throughout the house. One antidote is in the safe, the combination is "in the back of their minds" and the order found "over the rainbow". Gus is shot by the booby-trapped door, and the group makes their way to the basement, where it is revealed that Obi helped kidnap the others, which is supported by Laura when she recalls her abduction. He enters the furnace to retrieve two antidotes, but inadvertently activates it and is burned alive. As they continue searching the house, Jonas leads them to an upstairs room that Xavier and Addison break into, which houses an antidote behind a steel door and a needle-filled pit containing the key. The test is meant for Xavier, but he throws Amanda into the pit instead; though she retrieves the key, Xavier fails to unlock the door in time and abandons the group out of frustration.
Meanwhile, John passes the two hours with both idle and cryptic conversation with an increasingly frustrated Eric. He eventually reveals that after learning that he had cancer, he tried to commit suicide by driving off a cliff, but survived and found a new appreciation for life; with the time he has left he hopes to inspire the same appreciation in others by testing their will to live. The tech team arrives, and John reveals that all of the current victims aside from Daniel were framed by Eric for various crimes, providing police files as evidence, and if his identity is discovered, Daniel will be in danger. At Kerry's suggestion, Eric destroys several documents and sketches around the area, though John doesn't appear to care.
Xavier returns to the first room, where he discovers a colored number on Gus's neck and realizes that one number from the combination to the safe is written in colored ink on the back of each of their necks. Now desperate the antidote, he kills Jonas in a fight and begins hunting the others. Laura succumbs to the nerve agent, having been more affected than the others, and Amanda and Addison both abandon Daniel after learning that Eric is his father, though Amanda returns after finding Jonas's body. Addison finds a room with an antidote in a glass box, but her arms become trapped in the razor blade-lined sockets, and Xavier leaves her to die after reading her number. Amanda and Daniel return to the first room and find a tunnel that leads to the abandoned bathroom, which still contains Lawrence Gordon's severed foot and the decomposing bodies of Adam Stanheight and Zep Hindle . Daniel collapses inside just before Xavier finds them. Amanda points out that he cannot read his own number, but Xavier cuts the skin from his neck. As he moves to kill them, Daniel slashes his neck with a hacksaw having feigned collapse.
Having seen Xavier chasing Daniel, Eric assaults John and forces him to take him to the house at gunpoint. The sitting area they were in turns out to be a freight elevator, which they use to leave the factory. The SWAT team simultaneously trace the video feed to a similar, but different house where Rigg finds VCR's playing previously recorded images, revealing that the events in the gas house took place before they raided the factory. The factory's timer expires and a large safe opens, inside which Kerry finds Daniel bound and breathing into an oxygen mask. Unaware of any of this, Eric enters the house alone, and eventually locates the bathroom, where he is attacked by a pig-masked figure. He awakens to find himself shackled at the ankle to a pipe, and a microcassette recorder beside him reveals that Amanda has become John's protege. She appears in the doorway and seals the bathroom door, leaving Eric to die. Outside John hears his screams and slowly forms a smile.
|Jigsaw/John Kramer||Tobin Bell|
|Eric Matthews||Donnie Wahlberg|
|Daniel Matthews||Erik Knudsen|
|SWAT Member Pete||Kelly Jones|
|SWAT Member Joe||Vincent Rother|
|Mother In Cancer Ward||Linette Robinson|
|Nurse In Cancer Ward||Gretchen Helbig|
|Boy In Cancer Ward||Kofi Payton|
|Video Techie||John Fallon|
|Security Officer||Ho "Oyster" Chow|
Reviews on Saw II were generally mixed. Many critics who liked the first film hated the second film. Peter Travers, Film critic of Rolling Stone and Editor, gave Saw II a negative review despite liking the first installment. Stating that "...Saw II does have a lot more traps than the original but throughout the film,there's nothing but stupid plot-points and new characters that fall flat though I did like only two new characters in Saw II and those are Daniel Matthews and Alison Kerry. I like the characters because they have strong acting and well done performances." Travers gave the film one out of four stars but however did well recieve Erik Knudson and Dina Meyer's roles. Positive reviews came from people such as Grae Drake, the editor for Rotten Tomatoes, who did enjoy Saw II, stating that "A lot of people say that Saw is a fantastic horror film and I agree with them. Then came Saw II and after I came out of the theater after seeing the film and I was blown away, actually. I think the best scene in the second film is the ending where the character of Amanda Young ceils Eric Matthews in the bathroom from the first film and leaves him to die just like what John Kramer ceils Adam in the bathroom in the previous one." Due to the negative reception of Saw II, Rotten Tomatoes gave the film 35 out of 100, much to Grae's dismay.
Saw II has been released on a standard as well as a "Special Edition" uncut DVD. Differences in this edition include:
- When the police are entering Wilson Steel, three short cuts are shown of Jigsaw eating Cheerios upstairs and realizing the police have arrived. When he realizes this, he calmly goes back to what he was working on.
- Jigsaw has a few extra lines of dialogue with Detective Matthews, mentioning that he has "wiped the slate clean", and that most people are merely "sleepwalking".
- When Obi is trapped in the oven, he attempts to break the glass on the far side as he is burning alive.
- The scene of Amanda thrashing around in the Needle Pit is extended.
- In the bathroom, Charlie Clouser's score begins as Xavier begins cutting off his skin, and continues until he dies from his throat being slashed.
- The opening scene with "The Venus Headtrap" is extended and the song "Irresponsible Hate Anthem (Venus Headtrap Mix)" is playing in the background.
- The scene where Matthews is beating up Jigsaw is extended with one extra punch.
Box office gross
- Made for only $4 million, Saw II grossed over $144 million worldwide, which includes $87 million in the United States.
- One of the posters for the film Scary Movie 4 parodied the "severed fingers" poster for this film. But instead of a two, three fingers form the number four, and one has a Hello Kitty bandage. The tagline is "The funniest thing you ever sawed."
- When Jigsaw tells Kerry over the walkie-talkie the location of the file containing information everyone in the house, he says "Brown desk, second drawer". The desk the file is found in, however, is white.
- The code/combination for the safe is (Red) 2, (Orange) ?, (Yellow) 16, (Green) 11, (Blue) 9, (Indigo) 25, (Violet) 8.
- In the Uncut Edition, as with the first Saw, there is an easter egg called "Saw 2 in 62". It has three "takes", the first one is using clay figures modeled after the characters in the film, the second replaces the character with common materials, and the third one uses photos from the film which are animated.
- Contains several references to the 1972 film The Last House on the Left. Most obvious when John tells Eric that his son is in "the last house on the left".
- When Kerry and Eric are talking at the station, Darren Lynn Bousman is seen (with an afro) on a wanted poster. He also wore a robe to act out the part of Jigsaw for Michael's tape at the beginning of the film.
- The house number 237 is also the same number of the room in The Shining.
- In the scene where Kerry tells Matthews to threaten Jigsaw that he'll destroy his work, you can clearly see a drawing of the Razor Box Trap, which soon follows in the film.
- During the raid of Jigsaw's hideout in the opening of the film, when cars/armored vehicles drive by the camera, you can faintly see for a short time shadows of the crew. This was confimed in a commentary for the movie.
- During the scene when Eric finds Jonas's body (next to the trap door), he locates an antidote syringe. Knowing both Amanda and Daniel are meant to survive this game, and that Amanda never really showed poisoning symptoms, the antidote was presumably for Daniel. This would also explain how he survived his prolonged exposure to the toxin.
- It took 120,000 syringes to complete the needle pit sequence, and it took four days for four people to replace the needle tips with fiber tips.
- In Saw, the shackle was on Adam's left leg. However, in Saw II, The shackle is seen to be on Adam's right leg.
- Official website
- Saw III: Jigsaw Cuts Loose Video interview with Tobin Bell on MTV.com
- Donnie Wahlberg interview for Saw II