Heads were turned with the announcement of Chris Rock being attached to star and be an executive producer in the latest Saw film, that has currently been titled as The Organ Donor. Even more heads were turned with the announcement of Samuel L. Jackson to star in the film as well.
With this news come lofty expectations, and the movie will need to pull something different out of its hat to stand out from the other Saw films, which never could capture the entire mainstream fanbase. In order for Chris Rock’s offering to be successful, he and his team need to ensure these 10 things are present in some shape or form.
10 A Serious Chris Rock Performance
In all of his career, Chris Rock has played comedic roles, with only little deviations such as comedy-drama films like I Think I Love My Wife or Top Five. This is why everyone has raised their eyebrows at the idea of Chris being in a horror movie, with the implication he’ll be bringing in dark comedy.
What we want, though, is for him turn away from any comedic material and dive headfirst into the genre. His role should be serious as characters have been in previous Saw films; a turn into comedy would be a huge departure, one that will not sit well with fans, nor make Rock look any different from his usual stuff.
9 Mark Hoffman's Fate And The Bathroom Trap
Continuity was always the Saw series’ strongest suit - that is, until Jigsaw came along and decided to ignore everything from the first seven films. We never got to know what became of Mark Hoffman, who is most likely dead, but we still want confirmation on that.
Along with that, the most iconic setting in the Bathroom Trap needs to make a reappearance if Mark Hoffman really is dead. Since the latest Saw movie is looking to maintain its connection with the original film, the Bathroom Trap is a must-have. Seeing Hoffman’s corpse along with Adam, Zep, Xavier, and Dr. Gordon’s foot would be continuity done right.
8 A Break From The Apprentice Angle
As to why we want to see Mark Hoffman’s fate confirmed would be because we don’t want any more apprentices of Jigsaw showing up. Saw’s go-to twist has become the big reveal of a previously unknown apprentice springing up, and this was seen in Saw II, Saw IV, Saw VI, Saw 3D, and Jigsaw - basically, in almost all the films.
Chris Rock should avoid trying to take us by surprise by having his character or someone else potentially be the next Jigsaw, because we’ve seen this far too many times. You could argue this is more of “what we don’t want” than what we want, but this point really will be crucial if the latest movie is to be something fresh.
7 Doctor Gordon's Appearance
Yes, we’re aware he was an apprentice of Jigsaw so you might be thinking this negates the previous point; however, we’re not saying we want Dr. Gordon to return as a bad guy, we want to know what became of him.
Jigsaw inferred that Dr. Gordon had given up the “games” as there hadn’t been any cases for several years; this meant something must have happened that caused Dr. Gordon to give up his Jigsaw practice. Our preferred course would be to show a remorseful Dr. Gordon, who is wracked with guilt at his part in causing Adam’s death and the end of many others.
6 Genuine Horror (Not Too Much Blood)
The beauty of the first Saw movie was that there wasn’t as much gore in it. We did see some gruesome deaths in the form of flashbacks that illustrated just how dangerous Jigsaw was, but even these didn’t have nearly as much cringeworthy sights as the later movies.
Chris Rock needs to make efforts to present the scares in the film’s eerie setting rather than take the easy way out with the traps. He can draw inspiration from the original Saw’s thriller aspect, where the mysteriousness of the killer was what brought the sense of fear into the viewer.
5 Fewer Traps, More Story Impact
Fans developed a kind of immunity to the traps by the time of Saw V, after which there really wasn’t a trap that would shock us as much. The mistake made by the creators then was that they instead upped the ante with the traps, making Saw a gimmick-based series.
What got lost in the mix was how Saw actually was a very deep series with a point to make. It was about a man who was obsessed with wanting people to understand the meaning of life; to this end, Jigsaw was a philosopher gone awry, and it made him a tragic figure in many ways. The emphasis on this point is what the latest offering needs to make, and there needs to be an impact for every turn the story goes through.
4 Traps That Elevate The Plot
We’re not saying we don’t want traps at all. What we want is for these traps to be used that support the story. For instance, Saw 3D’s horsepower trap did nothing for the plot and was clearly just there to kick things into high gear visually. On the other end, we had Saw III, where the protagonist had to confront demons of his past.
Chris Rock’s main character should have a personal journey of his own, with the traps before him symbolizing some aspect of either his life or his personality. The gore should be toned down, and the symbology should be stressed upon. This way, there will be harmony between the implementation of the traps and the progression of the story.
3 The "Hello Zep" Theme
There’s going to be an inevitable twist by the climax, it wouldn’t be a Saw movie if we didn’t get one. When this happens, we don’t want a new theme in the series, because the “Hello Zep” theme is perfect.
It would be a natural inclination for the filmmakers to try out something new, but changing the final theme would mean a departure from the roots Chris Rock is looking to connect the new film to. Unlike some of the many other Saw films, which seemed to have the “Hello Zep” theme as an obligation, the new one should have the same timing the first film had when this tune starts rolling.
2 Samuel L. Jackson Dropping Bombs
You can’t have Sam Jackson in an R-rated movie and not have him work his formula that has brought much relevance to the films he’s been in. The announcement of Jackson starring in Saw made the movie mainstream popular, and Chris Rock needs to give Jackson a significant role.
Most likely, we might see him in an authoritative position much like Danny Glover had in Saw, but Jackson shouldn’t be restrained in his role. He needs to drop bombs in his dialogue, reminding us of Jules Winfield from Pulp Fiction. If he does play a cop, then his character should be neck-and-neck with the antagonist rather than falling into a trap.
1 Jigsaw's Presence Meaning Something
Tobin Bell seems like he won’t be in the new movie, and if Sam Jackson playing Jigsaw rumors are true, then we might have a Jigsaw who is alive. Should there be a twist and Tobin Bell’s Jigsaw does appear, then he needs to have a reason to be there.
In Saw V, Saw 3D, and Jigsaw, there really was no need of the Jigsaw character to be around other than to sell tickets. This time around, Jigsaw has to detrimental to the plot; if he’s there with no relation to the direct plot, then Chris Rock will have failed in this effort to make Saw a true mainstream horror film.