Saw II
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Saw II (2005) More at IMDbPro »

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The following FAQ entries may contain spoilers. Only the biggest ones (if any) will be covered with spoiler tags. Spoiler tags have been used sparingly in order to make the page more readable.

For detailed information about the amounts and types of (a) sex and nudity, (b) violence and gore, (c) profanity, (d) alcohol, drugs, and smoking, and (e) frightening and intense scenes in this movie, consult the IMDb Parents Guide for this movie. The Parents Guide for Saw II can be found here.

Jigsaw (Tobin Bell) has begun a new game by imprisoning eight victims in an abandoned house that is being filled with a slow-acting but deadly gas. This time his victims again include Amanda Young (Shawnee Smith) plus: 2) Addison (Emmanuelle Vaugier), 3) Gus (Tony Nappo), 4) Obi (Timothy Burd), 5) Xavier (Franky G), 6) Laura (Beverley Mitchell), 7) Jonas (Glenn Plummer), and 8) Daniel Matthews (Erik Knudsen), son of Eric Matthews (Donnie Wahlberg), who is also slated to become a part of Jigsaw's new game. The victims have been informed that they have two hours to find the antidote to the gas. However, each syringe filled with the antidote is only obtainable through a trap that can severely harm or even kill the person trying to get it. The police have also cornered John Kramer, aka Jigsaw, at his workshop. He has agreed to cooperate but only if Detective Eric Matthews (Donnie Wahlberg) sits with him until the clock runs out, after which he will find his son, who is missing and was actually kidnapped by Jigsaw and held "in a safe place."

Saw II is the second movie in the Saw series, preceded by Saw (2004), which was based on a screenplay by Leigh Whannel and James Wan. The screenplay for Saw II was co-written by Whannell and director Darren Lynn Bousman. The final script was largely based on an unrelated screenplay that Bousman had written previously, which he had unsuccessfully tried to get filmed. When Saw became a hit, Whannell helped to rewrite Bousman's screenplay into a full sequel to Saw. The other five movies in the series include Saw III (2006), Saw IV (2007), Saw V (2008), Saw VI (2009), and Saw 3D (2010).

The main reason why everyone is put together in the same location is to put pressure on Eric Matthews. Eric arrested and framed all of the victims (except for his son Daniel). If the victims find out that Daniel is Eric's son, that puts Daniel in immediate danger. Jigsaw assures Eric that the only reason he has orchestrated this game is because he wants to talk to him for a few hours so Eric can truly understand the meaning of Jigsaw's work.

From the tapes provided by Jigsaw: Obi was guilty of arson, lies, cons, deceit and kidnapping. Xavier is a drug dealer responsible for destroying other people's lives. According to the commentary track on Saw II, Gus was guilty of embezzlement and Laura was a kleptomaniac. Addison was a prostitute. Jonas didn't state his crimes nor was his tape heard. Viewers assume that he has ties to the mafia or some crime ring based on his fear for his family should he disappear. Daniel apparently has no sin, (other than possibly acting out and stealing on at least one occasion) and is only there to put pressure on Eric. Amanda is there to protect Daniel and make sure that he makes it out unharmed.

Matthews' sin is that he is corrupt and brutal. He has framed people for crimes they hadn't committed, and manipulated justice by shooting unarmed suspects. He is also a failure as a father and husband; he had an affair with Detective Kerry (Dina Meyer) that cost him his marriage, and he is not there for his son. He easily meets Jigsaw's criteria for someone who does not appreciate what he has. So Matthews' game is psychological in nature: the 'trap' is that he has to play by the rules for a change, by watching his son suffer among people who have a grudge against him. He needs to sit and let the game play out, against his nature of interfering with and manipulating the normal course of things.

This movie gives no definite answer to that question, other than that Jigsaw has enlisted the help of Obi in finding and kidnapping the other victims before becoming one himself. Perhaps Obi told Jigsaw about how Matthews had once framed him, but there is little reason to assume that Obi would know the exact details of the other people that Matthews had framed. Maybe Jigsaw had paid other people to provide the information, just as he enlisted Adam from the first movie to get information about Dr. Gordon. Furthermore, Detective Hoffman (though not in this film) supplied police evidence from the inside as one of Jigsaw's accomplices (he is seen setting up this game in a later film)

On the tape, Jigsaw stated "You all possess the combination to the safe. Think hard. The numbers are in the back of your mind. The clues of their order can be found over the rainbow." Turns out that each person has a color-coded number on the back of their neck. 'Over the rainbow' refers to the seven primary colors that make up a rainbow in order: Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo, Violet (ROYGBIV). The numbers and colors that we saw were: Red = 2 (Gus); Orange = ? (it was either on Daniel's or Xavier's neck - we did not see either); Yellow = 16 (Jonas); Green = 11 (Obi); Blue = 8 (Laura); Indigo = 9 (Addison); and Violet = 7 (Amanda).

Michael Marks, SWAT Member #1, SWAT Member #2, Gus Colyard, Obi Tate, Jonas Singer, Laura Hunter, Addison Corday, and Xavier Chavez. Detective Eric Matthews' fate is left open.

Addison, the prostitute, gets stuck in this trap, but according to the director's commentary, the trap was meant for Gus, the man who was shot through the eye when they tried to open the door. Gus is guilty of financial fraud at his work, and the Razor Glass Box was meant to represent the proverbial "cookie jar" where he would steal from. In addition, there is a lock with a key in it on the back of the box, so obtaining the antidote would have been very easy, but Jigsaw had correctly guessed that its victim would not bother to check.

Daniel and Amanda are running from Xavier through a tunnel that leads to the bathroom (where they come upon Adam and Zepp's decaying bodies). When Amanda points out that he won't be able to read the number on the back of his neck unless she tells him, Xavier reaches behind himself with a knife and cuts off the skin from the back of his neck in order to read it. He then turns his knife on Amanda and Daniel, but Daniel (who has been pretending to be passed out on the floor) jumps up and slashes his throat with a hacksaw. Back in his workshop, Jigsaw agrees to take Eric to the house after Eric brutally beats him. Detective Kerry, watching the live video feed, finally gets a lock on it and notices that Eric and Jigsaw have left the lair. The SWAT team arrives at the source of the video feed, but Kerry cannot see them on her monitor and realizes that the feed is not live. This is corroborated when the team finds several VCRs playing tapes of events that have already taken place. The timer in the workshop finally reaches zero, and a safe behind Jigsaw's desk open to reveal Daniel sitting inside, passed out, hands bound and wearing an oxygen mask. When Jigsaw told Eric he would find his son "in a safe" place, he meant literally. If Eric had simply talked with Jigsaw until the clock ran out, he would have been there when the safe opened. Instead, he resorted to his brutal ways, and is no longer there, and Kerry can't reach him to let him know what happened. At the house, while a severally injured Jigsaw waits in the car, Eric tears through the house looking for Daniel. He finds his way to the bathroom, where he is knocked in by someone wearing a mask. When he comes to, he finds himself shackled to the wall and a tape recorder in his hand. He listens to the tape. Amanda's voice can be heard thanking him for sending her to prison on a framed drug charge because it resulted in her meeting up with Jigsaw, who became her father, teacher, and mentor. She assures him that she is going to carry on John's work -- helping people to value the life they've been given -- after he dies. Amanda then appears in the bathroom doorway, says "Game over," and closes the door. In the final scene, Jigsaw sits in the van, waiting for Amanda. As Eric screams in agony, a bloody Jigsaw smiles.

To secure that the movie was rated "R" by the MPAA over 50 censorship cuts were made. The unrated Special Edition, which was released on DVD and Blu-ray some time later, contains the uncut version. It offers more than 81 altered scenes compared to the theatrical version. A detailed comparison can be found here.

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