Back in the early 2000’s, the Saw franchise reared it’s-potentially-gory head and quickly became a Halloween tradition, getting nastier with each annual entry.
To be straight up, I haven’t seen 5-7. While my personal opinion on the nature of the films themselves is currently irrelevant, I will note that after Saw II things got weird and I started to check out. By the time Saw IV was released, I kind of gave up. I mean, maybe they aren’t so bad and I’m missing out, (I have heard Saw VI is worth a viewing) but for now, only the first four are on Netflix, so that’s all that matters.
Although, the first Saw is actually not gory at all, it revealed an idea, a preview of what could-and should-be in these films. Around the same time, films like Hostel and Cabin Fever were giving blood-thirsty audiences what they wanted and Saw decided to jump on board. The ability to gross out an audience and tense up is a strength with this franchise, and we must embrace that. To do so, here are the top five most squeamish moments you can see on Netflix right now, that I guarantee will make you cringe at least once.
1. Pig Sludge from Saw III
Things didn’t really get too vulgar until this third installment, but Saw III has some of the most opportune moments for grossing out. One that always sticks in my head is this pig scene. While our main character Jeff is struggling to forgive the people involved in the killing of his son, he is given the decision to free them of some seriously heinous traps, including the pig trap. The criminal judge responsible for freeing the killer is tied to the bottom of a pit that is slowly filling with pig juices, as if he’s in the bottom of a cup that will soon fill up with a pig smoothie. It doesn’t lack any details or graphics, it makes me sick just thinking of it.
2. Needle Pile from Saw II
Like its predecessor, Saw II doesn’t offer too many cringe-worthy moments. Although, there are definitely a few and the one that stands out is when ex-junkie Amanda is thrown into the pit of heroin needles. While the macho druggie dude is supposed to be the one exploring this trap, he delegates like a real coward would, and throws someone else in to do the work for him. She’s instantly stuck with needles all over her body, and it’s quite dreadful to watch.
3. “The Rack” in Saw III
Back to Saw III, “The Rack” is a trap for Tim, the man who actually ran over Jeff’s kid. Jeff definitely…sort of tries to stop the machine as it slowly twists all of Tim’s limbs in ways bodies don’t, regardless of flexibility. This one is freaking awful, I’ve seen this multiple times and yet it still evokes all kinds of reactions from me. It’s one of those scenes where you want to cover your eyes, but still peek through the cracks, as if that remedies the awfulness. Eventually, Tim’s head is the last to be twisted like some sort of Exorcist trick that doesn’t work unless you’re possessed.
4. Head Crushing Ice in Saw IV
It was kind of hard to find a good gross-out scene from Saw IV. The film is short of everything from decent writing to adequate pacing. Although, a final scene in which character Eric Matthews (Donnie Wahlberg) has his head crushed in-between two large blocks of ice is what delivers. Featured quite a bit in this film, some weird editing technique is used that takes away from the overall effect. Viewers are left empty and disappointed because, while these traps are intense and freaky on their own, the execution of filming them is flawed and, frankly, boring. BUT this scene that results in a headless Wahlberg is still pretty freaking awesome and gnarly.
5. Saw-ing off Dr. Gordon’s foot
While we don’t REALLY see much of this, to ignore the moment Dr. Lawrence Gordon cuts off his foot in the very first Saw would be a huge discredit to James Wan and everyone else involved. This scene is what made the series the nasty gore fest it has become acknowledged as, and the anticipation leading up to it was why people went to watch in the first place. Also, we are, at least, allowed to watch the first few slices, providing enough of a reaction in just those few seconds.