Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

Independent Student Newspaper for the University of Texas at San Antonio

The Paisano

‘Saw X’ slashes through the box office

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Mariana Ramos

 

 

 

 

Imagine waking up disoriented in a foreclosed factory unaware of your exact location. As you try to move, you realize you are strapped to a jerry-rigged machine. Soon, you notice a cassette recorder with the words “PLAY ME” engraved on the side. As you press play, a grizzly voice cuts through the silence stating, “I’d like to play a game.”

This is what we have come to know and love from the torture horror franchise “Saw” since James Wan’s original masterpiece in 2004

“Saw X” returns to the past, taking place between “Saw” and “Saw 2.” In the film we follow the series’ main antagonist, John Kramer, as he struggles to face his terminal cancer diagnosis. After another disappointing appointment with his physician, he runs into a familiar face from his cancer support group. His friend makes him aware of a new experimental cancer treatment that he had received overseas. Kramer looks into the group performing the treatment, and is told to come to Mexico City to receive treatment as soon as possible. While Kramer jumps at the opportunity, he lands himself right in the middle of a multi-million dollar scam.

Soon after realizing he has been lied to, Kramer gets back into his main hobby; allowing people to learn from their mistakes. Though, his methods are extreme, to say the least. “Saw” as a franchise has been known for some really ingenious and some really stupid torture traps, but “Saw X” does not disappoint in this aspect. Each trap is brutal, gory and absolutely hard to watch. Alongside this, they bring in Amanda, also known as “The Pig.” Amanda is Jigsaw’s apprentice throughout the first few films. In “Saw X,” she really shines, showcasing her skills in some great scenes.

For a horror film, the development of the story and its themes are presented clearly. “Saw X” perfectly encapsulates the feeling of determination and pain Kramer feels. Kramer’s experience and perspective give him humanity in a sense. Which is surprising, given that he is a notorious serial killer. By the end of the film, I found myself rooting for Kramer in a way; he was set up as the lead of the film for once, giving the story extra depth. 

While “Saw X” is the best film in the series in years, it still is a flawed film. It suffers from awkward dialogue, and of course, an overabundance of bad decisions from Kramer’s victims. Alongside this, the film uses a yellow filter when in Mexico, which is definitely a cliche trope.

Overall, “Saw X” is one of the most well-developed and interesting “Saw” movies to date. The film brings tons of emotion to the franchise, and gives a new perspective to the acts committed by Kramer, the “Jigsaw Killer.”

Saw X” is playing in theaters as of Sept. 29, 2023.

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About the Contributor
Malaki Lingg, Web Editor
Malaki (he/they) is a third-year Digital Communication student at UTSA. He is originally from Nevada but has lived in the Austin area for most of his life. When not writing for The Paisano you will most likely find him thrifting, gardening or attending a concert. This is his fifth semester with The Paisano and his second as an editor.

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