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Se7en More at IMDbPro »

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9 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

Se7en is a dark, depressing, powerful and a clever movie

10/10
Author: Girish Gowda from BengaLuru, Karnataka
2 May 2010

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I didn't know what I was getting into when I sat down to watch this movie along with my friend. He had brought the DVD to my home and as he is a hardcore fan of Brad Pitt, he has bought almost every major hit movie of Pitt and since I am also a fan, we both watched it together. I thought it would be a cool movie like other Pitt films, but it was so dark and has so much more than other films of this genre.

Detective William Somerset (Morgan Freeman) is on his last week in duty and he's all set to retire when the case of a strange death is made his responsibility to solve. Though all others think that it was a psycho who was responsible for the death, Somerset has his doubts, he thinks that the murderer is simply a clever and disgusted man who is trying to rid the society of evil. In many ways, his and the killer's view about the degrading society is alike, except that Somerset wants to leave the city for the country life and the killer is taking action. Enter Detective David Mills (Brad Pitt), the young and dynamic sleuth who has a positive view on the society, and he is made the partner to Somerset. Then onwards, there are more disgusting, shocking deaths with the seven sins as its identity. The seven sins are - Gluttony, Greed, Sloth, Envy, Pride, Lust and Wrath. While Mills believes the killer is an insane person, Somerset tells him that he is a very clever, normal man and nowhere near insane with his precise killings and no clues to be found anywhere. The killer is a John Doe (played brilliantly in a cameo role by Kevin Spacey) and it takes every last bit of Somerset's and Mills willpower to not get carried away by the magnitude of the brutal, methodical killings. Tracy Mills (Gwyneth Paltrow) is the wife of Mills and they are very much in love. Will the detectives be able to stop this killer who claims himself to be a servant of God and who will bear the brunt of this maniac's insanity eventually - The society or the detectives?

David Fincher is at the helm of this amazing film. This could have been a routine cop-killer story, but he does not even step into the tired and old Hollywood clichés and is not afraid to make this a dark, unique and depressing tale about the human life. Also, he does so in a very powerful and clever way. I was racking my brains to figure out who the killer was, as in films like these, they would show the killer beforehand. And in the end, it was true; the killer had come in contact with the detectives. Morgan plays the old and more worldly wise man, rather in contrast to Pitt's character who is a hot-head at times. No matter how insanely talented Pitt is, the press always seems to give more importance to his charming looks and relationship with Jolie (back then, it was Jennifer Aniston). Tracy is genuinely portrayed by Gwyneth Paltrow. She played a major part in bringing Mills and Somerset together. I loved her scene where she introduces each other. Though she didn't get enough screen-time to have satisfied me, I got over it as the ending was so emotional and I cried (I am a straight guy and I am not ashamed to say that I cried) when Pitt finds out what was in the box. I could see that one coming a couple of minutes before the movie got to it, but it doesn't mean I didn't get emotional at that point. I was hoping against hope that it wasn't what I was thinking. But, it was and I cried. Don't see this if you can't handle brutal death scenes (although they show only the aftermath of the death, it is still nauseous) and are easily bored when things are not non-stop action. But, the screenplay is one of the best I have seen in this genre. Also, the colouring layout of the movie is dark, everything is subdued and always raining, except save for the climax which is bright and hot, which served as an irony of sorts and it was wonderful. When John Doe tells Mills to become wrath, I got chills running up and down my spine.

I still consider Fight Club to be the best Pitt-Fincher movie, but I can't ignore this brilliantly made movie. Though not everyone will like this film (case-in-point, my Brad Pitt fan friend), because of the dark overtone, I loved it as it isn't flashy and predictable like most movies of this genre, and actually was very brilliant.

10/10

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9 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

Se7en

8/10
Author: Manoj Arya
16 June 2005

'He is preaching….punishing'.

Serial killing with clues from killer is not a new thing to Hollywood but David Fincher's Se7en exceptional. Its evil genius. Se7en opens with a homicide where a fatso is killed in a very strange manner. We meet Detective Somerset(Freeman) who is about to take off and detective David Mills(Pitt) has just fought to get assigned there. Somerset is calm, mature and has achieved mastery over his job. He probably seen so much that now he badly wants to go far away from this bloodshed. David appears cocky first but turns out amiable character of the film. Tracey(Palthow) is David's wife who hasn't got used to with guns even after so many years of their marriage.

It begins. Each killing is shockingly repellent. Like an artist's signature every victim holds a note, a sin highlighted with lines from Dante Alighieri' s 'Divine Comedy', Shakespeare's 'Merchant of Venice'. And his name is John Doe(Kevin Spacey). Those lines are screaming that this not just some insanity. He wants to make a point.

Each murder is done by reaching horrific extremes of those deadly sins. A fat man is fed until he burst. Then there is an infamous lawyer got gun stuck on his head, handed a knife -a weighing scale is in front of him and he has to cut 1 pound of flesh from his body by himself. A druggist tied to bed for a whole year!! A famous model, her nose is cut and bandaged again and gave a choice- phone in one hand to call help n sleeping pills in other one to die rather than live deformed. A whore is punished ruthlessly that you should see on screen only. John says, "The world is so shitty…and we get used to them".

This Script is sumptuous. It mirrors today's society skillfully and boldly. Nothing is hidden by the camera. All we watch is naked truth that we hate to admit and most of the time that we hardly care. The spirituality woven in has its impact all over. Most of all ending is a blow. It is stunning.

There are number of memorable sequences in Seven. One especially is breath-taking when Somerset and Mills reaches John doe's apartment and Doe directly starts shooting at them and chase sequence followed is absolute fabulous. On other hand dinner party at Mills house we feel wine mixed in the air. Tracey and Somerset's meeting at coffee shop is the finest ones I ever seen. The intensity of that conversation can't be described.

This is a very dark film. It is all time raining. All environment surrounding Se7en is so grim and ghastly it clouds viewers with the same. Music refuse to leave us even when it is over. I must mention titles and credits rolled, one of the best I ever seen.

Se7en comes out with strong performances. Morgan Freeman is truly outstanding. Brad Pitt made me his fan from this movie. The way he says "Ladies and Gentleman we have a homicide here" and same David when taunted by Somerset "You are saying you care for these people?" says with assuring impulse "Sure I do….!!!". Gwyneth Paltrow 's Tracey doesn't have much screen presence but when she is there, we just can not stop love her character. In final half an hour we are introduced to Kevin Spacey's John Doe. The preacher. What can I say about this chilling work? Spacey gave such a performance that stings. We hate to admit with this man but somewhere we know he is right. Somerset asks him, "So you are saying some higher power tell you to do this?" Just watch John Doe reply "Lord works in mysterious ways..". Interesting thing pointed out by one of the fan is Somerset and John Doe both observed the same facts about today's society but responds in different ways, Somerset want to run away and Doe takes action.

No matter how many thrillers I shall see but this will always one of my favorites. It affects deeply. That's the power of Se7en. Se7en is a terrific thriller and a modern classic.

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8 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

Dour.

8/10
Author: StarkedInMovies
26 December 2015

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

David Fincher's "Se7en" is one such movie that blurs the line between a giallo horror and a psychological thriller. "Se7en" sets a mood which is chilling, dark and puzzling. A mood that is present all through the entire movie. The mood set is the excellent work of director David Fincher, who wanted to give dark and gloomy atmosphere to the movie just to expose a world which is rough, bleak and gritty. The effect it makes is astounding and is does so by good camera work and lighting, or the lack of it. The cameras used in this film was specially changed film stock to make the visuals look as dark as possible which is complemented well by Howard Shores music score. The ominous music that is added keeps the audience uncomfortable, in a good way. If it wasn't for disturbing message that "Se7en" puts across, and astonishing dark scenes, I would have not given the rating I gave.

The assignment of roles in the movie is excellent, even though I loathed Brad Pitt's character. Brad Pitt's character was at times annoying and glorified. All he did was slow down the overall investigation process. His weak presence makes it seem that he was never the Lead or the Assistant detective in the investigations of the crime. All he said was excessive swear words and not something tangible and due to this reason, his interaction with Morgan Freeman's character was frail. At times I felt Morgan Freeman's character would have done a better job leading the investigation alone. The conversation in the police car was really insubstantial. I would have really despised this movie it wasn't for the phenomenal acting by 'actor who played the Killer'. It would've been so much better if Brad Pitt's character wasn't such a weak character and if he just stop talking at times and listened to the astute Morgan Freeman's character. Whilst watching the movie I wholeheartedly wanted to despise on Brad Pitt's character and to an extent Brad Pitt himself but having watched and loved Brad Pitt in David Fincher's Fight Club I often found myself forcibly liking Brad Pitt's character and justifying his decisions and his exchange of ideas but I failed. Morgan Freeman's was excellent in the role of a veteran detective and a wise mentor for Brad Pitt's character

**SPOILER**

The biggest sin in this movie is perhaps not the character but the ending. I found the ending awfully predictable. I could have seen that one of our main characters would eventually be one of the 'victims'. Especially after getting to see the 'wife' and she revealing something crucial at a buildup stage just screamed that she was going to die. The buildup was for nothing if it wasn't for the predictable ending. I had a tiny hope for something magnificent and grimy, since the killer's talk about the sins and how his killings were justified but the killer too just disappointed me in the end. Also it made me dislike Brad Pitt's character that much more, because I was hoping he wouldn't shoot the killer, and that I might get a reason to respect him as a character. I don't care how if a certain movie has a happy or a sad ending, but this movie would've ended on a strong note if he hadn't killed the killer. The director could have found another way of exhibiting the last sin. Morgan Freeman's character could have and should have done something more in preventing the last 'execution'. After all he is the one who saw clearly what the killer's grand plan was. The ending scene was one big anticlimax and thus this movie could have been my second favorite David Fincher movie following Fight Club if not my second favorite movies of all time.

8/10.

Note: I used 'actor who played the Killer' instead of revealing the actor's name is because David Fincher wanted the killer's identity to be a surprise and I shall oblige.

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11 out of 16 people found the following review useful:

Ed5y but Ordinary

Author: tedg (tedg@filmsfolded.com) from Virginia Beach
14 February 2001

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Spoilers herein.

What a great boon these DVDs are! -- where we get to view and review with comments from the creators.

Sometimes the creative artist is a poor authority for the depth of their own art. So it is with some interest that I check if what I have seen was what the director thought he put there. Often, I find them simply working on intuition. But the better performing artists are different. They must always intend -- if they do not intend a specific feel or effect then it simply is not there. That's why when a DVD commentary involves an actor it is of particular interest.

In this DVD, we hear Pitt, who really commits to delivering, who worries, who prepares, who sublimates self in order to create an image of himself in your mind. And we hear Freeman who is arrogant, demanding of you and not of him, offering a here-I-am take-it-or-leave-it style of acting, which he calls `intuitive.' This really explains a lot for me. It's why Freeman is a negative attractor for any film I consider, and Pitt the other way around.

Either way, Spacey is the only one that connects with his character, and he's given a relatively simple job.

I admit that this story moved well, engaging by shock and unexpected moves when I first saw it. But on repeated viewings, substantial sloppiness gets in the way. What remains is the very fine lighting. I think `Fight Club,' was much the superior film. This one hardly rates any celebration.

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56 out of 106 people found the following review useful:

Se7en Problems with Se7en

1/10
Author: Bill-276 from Norwalk, CT
26 February 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I can't remember the last movie I saw that was this full of crap. How did they convince that cast this story would be anything other than the "t-shirt"/"movie of the week" Brad Pitt's character said it was going to be? The performances were fine (particularly Freeman's and Spacey's). The script, however, was a travesty.

First, the consistency of the killings is completely muddled. The first five murders were committed by Spacey's character ("John Doe"--how original) because of what he perceives to be the sins committed by those he's killed. OK so far. The 6th murder (of Paltrow's character) is also done by Doe, but not because of a sin she's committed, rather because of the sin Doe perceives HE has committed. Got that? And the 7th murder is done by Pitt's character to Doe because of the sin Mills (Pitt) carries with him (I guess?). But even if you link the "Envy" murder of Doe by Mills as one of the 7 sinners who "deserved" to be killed for their sin, why was Paltrow's character killed again? And along with that, why does Pitt's character get to live for the sin of Wrath?

Another plot point that I don't think can be overlooked... If Doe was the religious lunatic he was presented to be, the murder of Paltrow's character and her unborn child would surely have been the 6th AND 7th murders. Doe was aware she's pregnant. Of course, how do you link an unborn child with a deadly sin? I see the writer's problem. His solution was a train wreck.

I also didn't buy at all that Doe was actually envious of Pitt's character. It made for a quirky plot twist, but it seemed so inconsistent for that character. It also didn't make much sense from a plot perspective (see paragraph above).

Have I got to 7 things yet? Did I mention the silly 7 in the title? How about the constant allusions to Somerset's knife, the knife tossing, etc... which turns out to be needed most in the film to open a box?

I guess if you make the assumption that John Doe is insane, then this master plan might make sense to the audience: He's insane, his plan probably shouldn't make sense. But to think that his plan worked, succeeded, was effective or even consistent at all (as Somerset's character implies by telling Mills not to kill Doe and fulfill Doe's plan), is giving WAY to much credit to the writer, and almost no credit to the audience.

I recently saw and reviewed Michael Haneke's "Funny Games" which would fall into the same psychological/horror/thriller genre as "Se7en". And as much as I was affected by "Funny Games" and impressed by Haneke's vision and direction, I said that I couldn't responsibly recommend it. After seeing "Se7en", however, I finally found Haneke's target audience. If "Se7en" is on your recommended must-see list, then "Funny Games" is really the must-see movie for you.

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7 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

Can't stop watching.You are already sucked into the story.

10/10
Author: stallone-9 from Bulgaria
29 February 2008

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The greatest thriller of all time right next to Silence of the Lambs.David Fincher has outdone himself and it shows.The story is simple.Two detectives must apprehend a twisted serial killer who punishes his victims for their own sins.But what they come across will soon change them both forever!!!Expert story teller Fincher builds non stop tension which nearly explodes by the end of the movie.Morgan Freeman and Brad Pitt are at their best here.There is great chemistry between the two and Gwyneth Paltrow is terrific as Tracy.The end of the movie is one of the most shocking experiences ever on film.The first time when I saw Se7en i was shocked,horrified and just couldn't believe what just happened.THE END will shock you be sure but that is one of the reasons the movie is so good.The final lines by Somerset are moving:"Ernest Hemingway once wrote that the world is a fine place worth fighting for...I agree with the second part".

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8 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

Okay, but a bit overrated IMO

Author: john in missouri from United States
27 January 2006

Maybe I've just seen too many movies. Maybe my expectations were too high, having seen this movie highly praised here. Maybe the story seemed a bit too predictable to me. Maybe I just found some of the gore a bit over the top. Or maybe I've seen so much gore in films already that I simply wasn't that impressed.

Whatever it was, this movie struck me as okay, certainly not bad, but not the masterpiece others have praised it as. Interestingly, I've seen most of the main characters in movies that I liked better: Kevin Spacey appeared in The Usual Suspects; Brad Pitt in Twelve Monkeys (although he also did a fine job here); and Morgan Freeman in Driving Miss Daisy and The Shawshank Redemption.

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5 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

Who's right and who's wrong?

10/10
Author: William Moon (moonwio) from Auburn, Alabama, U.S.
23 May 2005

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This is an outstanding movie. Morgan Freeman and Kevin Spacey are pitch-perfect, and Brad Pitt is solid. Pitt actually had a lot to do with this movie's success outside of his acting. He forced the studio to keep the original ending, and he forced them to shell out the money to get Spacey. It is fortunate that he did, as those two elements are central to the movie's greatness. Spacey played the killer so chillingly that it makes his message seem all the more unnerving and, perhaps, correct. The uncompromising ending leaves the viewer shocked and reeling. This movie could not have worked without it. Outside of those obvious elements, another key to the film is Freeman's character. His outlook on life is and how it is affected by the murders and by his new partner is a key subplot the film. It brings more weight to the picture. Also, David Fincher's dark, dreary direction adds to the film, somewhat similar to the way Ridley Scott's dark vision adds to Blade Runner. The constant rain is a nice touch, especially when it ironically recedes after the killer shows up. I was never a Nine Inch Nails fan, but their dark brand of music fits this film well, as evidenced in the opening credits. Overall, I think this is one of the great films of all time. Watch it if you can handle grisly images and if you like unnerving endings.

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7 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

The Greatest Crime Thriller Ever Told....With The Greatest Villain Of All Time

10/10
Author: James Aust from United Kingdom
7 January 2008

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This is by far the finest serial killer movie of all time. The script is beautifully paced and original with a fantastic twist at the end. The acting is superb, everyone is on the top of their game. Morgan Freeman shows his versatility and superb natural ability in the role of retiring detective Somerset, Brad Pitt gives the performance of his career as the young feisty Dectective Mills and Gwyneth Paltrow is fantastic as his highly sympathetic and caring character of his wife Tracy. But of course it is Spacey who steals the show as the compelling chilling "John Doe".

His entrancingly calm and chilling performance lifts the picture above many others of its genre and his pure evil glint is just as chilling even more so than Anthony Hopkins in "The Silence of the Lambs".

I believe that Se7en is far far superior to "The Silence of the Lambs" and others of its kind. It was one of the greatest films of the 90's (for me second only to "The Usual Suspects") and i feel is constantly underrated by many. I am glad to see it at #36 although i feel it is worthy of the top 20.

This is David Fincher's finest hour as a director with his drab rainy surroundings adding a superb drab atmosphere to a drab city. Andrew Kevin Walker's script is however will be what remembered as an incredible story, perfectly crafted and acted out beautifully by Spacey, Freeman, Pitt and co.

A MUST SEE FILM FOR EVERY FAN OF GREAT 90's MOVIES, ONE OF THE DECADES GREATEST.

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3 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

genre film with some style

7/10
Author: Lumpenprole from United States
21 January 2002

I thought this movie was a pretty remarkable exercise in style and an incredibly controlled performance by Morgan Freeman. Most of it is kinda cliched – the retiring cop breaks-in a rookie (by-the-book vs. the loose cannon working on a hunch), the clever serial killer, the soulless city, the standard noir ending where the searcher realizes that he is what he's been searching for and so on. The art direction is wonderful, with a real attention to detail. The movie makes for riveting viewing the first time around. I find myself skipping chapters though when I try to watch it again.

To make the last act measure up to the first hour of the movie, I think the writing should have emphasized the idea that the wrath/envy set up was an example of John Doe improvising after the detectives found his apartment. The wrath/envy scene doesn't have nearly the convoluted menace of the Sloth or Gluttony scenes. It's a noir thriller and Gwen is unaccounted for - the end seemed pretty obvious to me compared to the craziness of "HELP ME" in fingerprints.

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