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Maze Malaise 

Another year, another terrible 'Saw' sequel

Do you like scary stories? Well, there's nothing for you in the actual plot of the Saw sequels. But it seems like the Saw movies will never end, that they will return every year like an evil plague—a scaly, slimy demon determined to steal your money. I know this very notion gives me serious nightmares.

We are now up to a sixth Saw film, and things get political this time. The ever-clairvoyant but definitely dead Jigsaw (Tobin Bell), with the help of a couple of folks who are actually living, have concocted one of those elaborate, ridiculously expensive death mazes for some new prey.

This time out, health-insurance tyrants are the target. It seems Jigsaw was denied health coverage for his cancer. Although he was wealthy and could've paid for treatment himself, he found the denial a travesty and invested in killing machines instead. Therefore, a health-insurance exec and many of his staff members will have to "play a game" that will result in people hacking off their own limbs, cutting off their love handles, getting injected with acid, etc.

I know this franchise has its fans, but I am not among them. The series lost me the moment Cary Elwes sawed off his own foot and vied for the position of Worst Actor Ever in a Horror Film in the initial Saw. (Yes, I am counting Tor Johnson from Plan 9 From Outer Space.)

While Saw VI is awful, it's not as bad as Saw V, and is only marginally worse than Saw II. It is, however, not as good as the original Saw, a movie that I didn't care for in the first place. Ah, who gives a crap? They're all interchangeable.

I'm tired of Jigsaw murdering people after his death. I think we need a Saw film in which he travels into the past and screws with his enemies' ancestors. Surely, if he can concoct all of these elaborate death devices, the guy can put together some sort of serious time machine. He could travel to dinosaur times and put one of those tape recorders in the stomach of a large, oft-consumed mammal.

Perhaps his ancestor, tribal pervert Jigsaw UgLug, would find this machine and figure out the play button. Then he would return to his cave, where all of the relatives of future Jigsaw enemies would be confined to all kinds of ancient death traps around their heads and groin areas, which would make UgLug dance around the fire with glee. However, since the real Jigsaw didn't bring anything back in time to smelt metal, all of the contraptions would be created from vines and dirt. Everybody could break out of their traps with relative ease and go on a massive dinosaur-watching expedition, never giving the matter a second thought.

OK, that would be one suck-ass film. But it would be better, and perhaps more realistic, than the last five Saw movies!

Here's another idea: One of the Jigsaw tape recorders ends up in Roger Ebert's large intestine, which he passes after watching the latest Willem Dafoe movie at the Toronto International Film Festival. After an extensive and much-needed cleaning of the tape recorder, somebody presses the button to discover that Jigsaw has concocted an elaborate plot to kill all of the critics who hate Saw movies.

The movie would conclude with a defiant Bob Grimm being trapped in one of those head-crushing contraptions. I would declare that such a horrible death would be better than sitting through any further Saw chapters. The timer would run out; my head would be squashed; and I would be spared further cinematic tortures.

I would consider this a happy ending.

Saw VI
Rated R · 91 minutes · 2009
Official Site: saw6film.com
Director: Kevin Greutert
Producer: Gregg Hoffman, Mark Burg, Oren Koules, Daniel Heffner, Peter Block, Jason Constantine, James Wan, Leigh Whannell and Stacey Testro
Cast: Tobin Bell, Costas Mandylor, Betsy Russell, Mark Rolston, Peter Outerbridge, Shawnee Smith, Athena Karkanis, Samantha Lemole, Caroline Cave, George Newbern, Darius McCrary, Shauna MacDonald, Devon Bostwick and Tanedra Howard

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