Friday, May 2, 2014

Se7en (David Fincher, 1995) Review

One plus side to being trapped in University is that I am given free time not to socialise with people I know (call me anti-social or what not) or play video games since...I have no consoles here, I am left watching many, many films. To pick what I watch, I'm been using IMDb's top 250 list. I don't plan to watch all 250 but I'll get some major ones down. Films like The Matrix or Pulp Fictions are films I've sought out after checking the list but let's take a look at one such film, Se7en....or Seven...the DVD cover wasn't sure.

Two detectives, Somerset (Morgan Freeman) and Mills (Brad Pitt), find themselves working on a homicide case seemingly linked to the seven deadly sins. The killer, known as 'John Doe', is taking down one person at a time starting with gluttony which gets Somerset and Mills on the case. The two have to set aside their differences and figure out the clues behind Doe's killings and get one step ahead of him. Somerset researches the seven deadly sins in order to get inside the mind of the killer while Mills sits on the sidelines going for a volatile and head on approach.

Right off the bat I must say that Morgan Freeman and Brad Pitt compliment themselves very well. The two make a surprisingly memorable duo and are the main element that hold the film together. I can't really imagine the film being done with any other actors. It's a unique chemistry that shines through. The other actors are also excellent. I can't ruin who plays 'John Doe' (otherwise it would be on the DVD) but they are the best actor in the film. They embody the strange compromise of rationalism and insanity somehow (can they even exist together).

If it had to bring up one complaint (and it's a big complaint) is that the film takes a while to really get going. The opening is slow and a bit tedious but when it gets going, it becomes an intense, unique thriller with the core idea of the seven deadly sins. This film has had many iconic quotes and scenes taken by the audience, most notably "What's in the box?", and it's easy to see why. It's a film with lasting appeal and some of the dark imagery and twists will stick with you.

Se7en is a strong film that did a good job of depicting a serial killer with a good performance (with an actor I won't spoil for you) with Morgan Freeman and Brad Pitt being strong contrasting roles. Is it the 22 best film ever as IMDb claims? No. It takes a while to build up speed and get going which is a major issue. The ending is brilliant which is probably where all the hype is built from. It's a recommended watch, just don't expect a 10/10 film.

Tense, well acted and runs well with an intriguing concept even if it's a bit slow to begin with.

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