Prayer Focus
Click here to watch THE HOPE on-line!
Movie Review

Saw VI a.k.a. “Saw 6,” “El juego del miedo 6,” “El juego del miedo VI,” “Testere 6,” “Zaga VI”

MPAA Rating: R for sequences of grisly bloody violence and torture, and language.

Reviewed by: Brian C. Johnson

Extremely Offensive
Add to your list?
View your list
Moviemaking Quality:

Primary Audience:
Crime Mystery Suspense Horror Thriller Sequel
1 hr. 30 min.
Year of Release:
USA Release:
October 23, 2009 (wide) DVD: January 26, 2010
Copyright, Lionsgate click photos to ENLARGE Copyright, Lionsgate Copyright, Lionsgate Copyright, Lionsgate Copyright, Lionsgate Copyright, Lionsgate Copyright, Lionsgate Copyright, Lionsgate Copyright, Lionsgate Copyright, Lionsgate
Relevant Issues
Copyright, Lionsgate

Every time you buy a movie ticket or rent a video you are casting a vote telling Hollywood “That’s what I want.” Why does Hollywood continue to promote immoral programming? Are YOU part of the problem? Answer

VIOLENCE—How does viewing violence in movies affect families? Answer

About murder in the Bible

Death in the Bible



Final judgment

Where did cancer come from? Answer

Reviews of other films in this series

Saw I (2004)

Saw II (2005)

Saw III (2006)

Saw IV (2007)

Saw V (2008)

Saw 3D: The Traps Come Alive (2010)

Featuring: Tobin Bell (Jigsaw/John), Costas Mandylor, Mark Rolston, Betsy Russell, Shawnee Smith, Peter Outerbridge, Samantha Lemole, Tanedra Howard, Marty Moreau, Shawn Ahmed, Janelle Hutchison, Gerry Mendicino, Caroline Cave, George Newbern, Shauna MacDonald, Devon Bostick, Darius McCrary, Shawn Mathieson, Melanie Scrofano, Karen Cliche, James Gilbert, Larissa Gomes, Dan Duran, James Van Patten, Jon Mack, François Sagat, Elle Downs, Tenika Davis, Karl Campbell, Ginger Busch, Jessie Rusu, Mpho Koaho, Chris Owens, Vicki Papvas, Catherine Rix, John Watson
Director: Kevin Greutert
Producer: Twisted Pictures, Peter Block, Mark Burg, Daniel J. Heffner, Kaleigh Kavanagh, Oren Koules, Stacey Testro, James Wan, Leigh Whannell
Distributor: Lionsgate

“The game comes full circle”

He may be dead and gone, but his “important” work continues. Renowned as the Jigsaw Killer (for the elaborate tests he requires and the puzzle-pieced shape he cuts from the flesh of his victims, John Kramer (Tobin Bell) continues to lead his disciples of death long after his own death from cancer. This sixth installment (and final?) installment of the “Saw” series answers many of the questions fans of the series have been longing to know since the first episode.

We learned in an earlier film about Kramer, a successful real estate tycoon, and his beautiful wife, Jill (Betsy Russell), a big hearted doctor who works at a methadone clinic. Regrettably, one of Jill’s regulars attempts to rob the clinic and accidentally hurts a very pregnant Jill, who loses the baby. John was never a fan of the work Jill performed, citing that providing drugs to the drug-addicted is only masking the problem; he argues that only until the addicted have a real will to live will they be able to kick the habit. Following the death of the baby they had already named Gideon, John sets out to teach people to fight for their lives, and thus, Jigsaw was born.

Continuing the storyline from the fifth sequel, detective Hoffman (Costas Mandylor) has become a disciple of Jigsaw and promises to carry on his work after John’s demise. Hoffman has perfected his skills, and, in a series of flashbacks, we watch Jigsaw’s training program. To cover his own tracks, Hoffman attempts to frame Agent Strahm for the series of grisly murders (Strahm is the last victim of “Saw V”). While police follow Strahm’s trail, Hoffman must complete a series of five tasks bequeathed to him by his mentor—including an elaborate “game” (as John called his tests) for Will (Peter Outerbridge), the insurance company executive who denied John’s claim for an experimental cancer treatment that may have spared his life.

Fans of the series will not be disappointed; the blood, gore, and elaborate machinations of Jigsaw and his protégés are all here. Sadly, much of the psychological thrill of the original “Saw” film is gone—this movie is ultimately little more than eye candy for those with a blood lust. Credit to the writers for cluing the audience in on John’s descent into madness. Also a shout out to Tanedra Howard, making her screen debut as one of the victims in the opening scenes. Howard earned her place in the film for being the winner of VH1’s reality series, “Scream Queens” which was hosted by veteran “Saw” actress, Shawnee Smith. Howard’s acting was amateurish, but congratulations anyway.

Most Christian audiences will be completely turned off by this film; it is definitely not for children or for the faint of heart. Those that can stand it may find interesting themes about the importance of families, righteous living, and honoring your commitments. There is, also, a chiding commentary on the health insurance industry that certainly could be fodder for continued dialogue. Furthermore, at the center of John’s “mission” is his belief in living the best life we are given—that is a message that we all can try to reproduce in our lives.

Violence: Extreme / Profanity: Heavy / Sex/Nudity: None

See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.

Viewer CommentsSend your comments
Comments below:
Positive—I will admit right up front that I am a fan of the “Saw” films and I was waiting to see “Saw VI” ever since I watched the first trailer on TV in early October. I had low expectations for this one, as # 5 was nearly a complete dud. I was surprised at how good it was and thoroughly enjoyed the film.

I know that members of the Christian community are angry that I enjoy films with violence in them, and I can sympathize, but unlike most people I know, I’m not there for the violence and gore. I am genuinely intrigued by the storyline (# 1 still blows all its sequels out of the water, though.) While the twist isn’t present at the end of the film (this movie is an unfolding look at how everything fits together), as the credits rolled my mind was still flipping around inside my skull. It requires quite a bit of thinking for an audience member to fit all the pieces into one coherent puzzle, but that complexity keeps this film above the rest of its genre.

Yes, the violence is very graphic and I even cringed a couple of times, but the story is what should be observed when viewing this film. For fans of the series, I recommend this. For anyone who doesn’t like the series or has a weak stomach—don’t even think about seeing it, it’s that simple.

# 7 being in 3-D sounds interesting. This installment definitely left the story open for at least one more sequel. I wonder where it’s going from here?
My Ratings: Moral rating: Very Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 4
—Benjamin Badger, age 18 (USA)
Neutral—“I want to play a game.” Those words have become a grisly foreshadow of things to come in all 6 Saw movies. As a Christian, I cannot recommend that anyone view or purchase this film because of the morally offensive behavior contained within it. That being said, compared to its' predecessors, Saw 6 tends to focus more on the intricate, unfolding plot and not on the gore. Perhaps the writers have exhausted the part of their brains labeled “torture” and “mutilation.” I don’t intend to give a detailed description of each and every trap and its' bloody consequences because—let’s face it—who really wants to know how many feet of human intestines are shown?

If we’re looking at the film from a cinematographers' point of view then that’s a positive element of the movie. The camera angles and scenery are true to the previous films and that fact alone can send chills down the viewers spines. As far as the acting goes it’s hard to imagine an actor/-tress who wouldn’t know what to do in a horror film… scream, swear, ask basic questions (i.e.: who are you, why are you doing this, etc.), beg for someone to rescue you… pretty much anything other than actually taking a deep breath and trying to figure out how to escape alive. So, in short, the acting is on par. Now the story, ***Spoiler Warning*** if you walked into the theater in suspense then you will walk out the same way (except you will likely do the later with a mild-severe case of nausea). The fine line between good guys and bad guys has never seemed so blurry in a film series. Half the time you find yourself rooting for the “tested” man/woman to come out alive; however, the past wrongs of the individual(s) have a tendency to overshadow whatever noble sacrifices they might make for others along the way. In Saw 6 it’s clear that by the climax of the film the semi-main character has learned his lesson, so he should go free right? I won’t spoil that.

The twists will keep the wheels of your mind spinning, but the deaths will leave you with a lingering sense of pity for the victims. Personally, if I could pick how to die, I think death by chocolate sounds pretty good. Unfortunately for the characters in Saw 6, their deaths are far from peaceful and simple. As the series continues it’s no longer a question of how do we all get through this, but one of who deserves to get through this. Life is a gift to be treasured… but does the whole of humanity need to be burned, shot, stabbed, suffocated, liquefied, strangled, crushed or otherwise mutilated in order to truly appreciate that gift? I think not. As Christians we are tested everyday, but—unlike Jigsaw—God doesn’t kill us off when we mess up.

In Saw, there are no second chances, but in reality every time we fall short of the mark we can always put an honest effort into making things right again. If there is one minutely good thing to be gained from the Saw series it’s that every choice we make has consequences, so making the right choice today can allow someone else to make the right choice tomorrow. Live, Love, Laugh Everyone!
My Ratings: Moral rating: Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 3½
—Anna Summers, age 18 (USA)
Neutral—Let me caution potential viewers. Other than being a veteran of the first 5 entries, you need a strong stomach. I felt a mighty urge to get up and request a refund with the onslaught of the opening sequence. I don’t know if that was the Spirit telling me to abandon ship or just my visceral reaction to it. IT’S VERY GRAPHIC; I likely felt the push from the former inclination rather than the latter. In any event, don’t pull a Jonah like me. In fact, just skip this movie and read the plot summary on Wiki. BUT… if you don’t, and you sneak into the cinema, know the rest of the movie is temperate in comparison to its grotesque intro.

Still, VI follows the suit of IV and V.—i.e., traps, traps, and more traps. More about shock than tacitness like the pioneer of the series (the original, the unadulterated Saw). Bundles of flashbacks. Less and less pronounced “twist” during the climax. More ways to keep “Jigsaw” alive. These are the going trends with these sequels, and the claim is part 7 and part 8 will be released in the near future, with 7 being in 3D. Suitable forecast? I think so. And this is where Fonzy jumps the shark or Indy gets nuked in hollowed-out fridge.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Very Offensive / Moviemaking quality: 3½
—Mega Tron, age 23 (USA)