Se7en (1995)

se7en-movie-posterAlright guys, back into the depths of my collection for one of my all time favourites. This is one of the most spoiled movies of all time, and I was fortunate enough to watch it, this time, with someone who actually had not had the ending spoiled for them. Honestly, that made it kind of an exciting experience. I’m going to keep it pretty low on spoilers, because honestly, if you haven’t had the ending screamed in your face, then you need to seek this movie out and just enjoy the ride. Stop reading this review and just go watch it. Let’s talk about Se7en :

Two detectives, a rookie and a veteran, hunt a serial killer who uses the seven deadly sins as his modus operandi.

A pretty simple story and one that, in the 20 years since it’s come out, has been copies, referenced, and been paid “homage” by totally uncreative screenwriters desperate to catch what this movie had. Of course, these clones are pretty easy to spot now, and we’ve heard stories like this one so many times that I can be hard to take it seriously. That said, this movie is absolutely fucking fabulous.

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Starting with the actors in this movie, Se7en stars a 90s Brad Pitt, back in the days of his dashingly handsome and charming glory, and of course Morgan Freeman. I’m fairly convinced that Morgan Freeman simply doesn’t age, it’s  baffling. I’m pretty sure that he and Tilda Swinton have the same source of life force. There is also another iconic performance in this, the immortal performance of Kevin Spacey is one of the most memorable performances from the 90s, and he doesn’t really make that long of an appearance. It’s comparable to Anthony Hopkins in Silence of the Lambs, where Hopkins spent 16 minutes on screen and still won an Oscar. It’s the thing people remember, and forget how little they’re actually there.

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The story is dark, gritty and very engaging straight through. There seem to be a few plot holes or scenes that don’t really make sense, but those are actually explained when you look into things that were cut from the final cut, so even that is totally forgivable. We also have some superb direction from everyone’s favourite David Fincher, who gave us Fight Club, Social Network and Gone Girl. The man’s track record alone is enough to make this a pretty good choice. It’s written by Andrew Kevin Walker who has a …spotty career and really does show that a script given to the right director can mean everything. Walker also wrote 8mm , The Wolfman, Sleepy Hollow and Brainscan. So, do what you want with that information.

There are some really disturbing and iconic scenes in this movie, and they really do move the tone away from a true-crime drama and into a horror film. In particular the Sloth murder scene seems to be one that gets under the skin of most viewers. Myself included. Each murder is interesting, and the movie employs the tell-don’t-show method of story telling which might irritate some, but something about the way it was presented makes the killings all the more disturbing, without being graphic and over the top.

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Overall, this is really one of my all time favourite movies. In all of the times I’ve seen it, I haven’t started to love it any less. It’s incredibly engaging and has elements that will appeal to horror fans and crime movie fans alike. If you haven’t seen it, you really need to.

RATING: *****

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