Each Saturday a new deranged killer is highlighted in what is known as Psychopath Saturdays during Wilhelm Screamfest. Collective insanity run through the veins of these sick individuals making these films even more terrifying to watch. It’s not just the villains that are the stars, as the four films selected all have an amalgamation of brilliant directing, well written scripts and pitch perfect casts. There were many films to narrow the list, but one film couldn’t be left out of the bunch. David Fincher’s “Se7en” was at first a misunderstood film, that has now climbed it’s rank to not just the suspense horror list, but best ranking films ever.
Following two detectives, “Se7en” unveils the more sinister side of the human mind through various crime scenes. Detective Mills (Brad Pitt) and Somerset (Morgan Freeman) come across gruesome murders that all have a connection, representation of the seven deadly sins. On the case, the two attempt to rely on their intelligence as they examine the clues left by the serial killer.
“Se7en” easily could have gone down the path of the mediocre crime drama, but thankfully the talented cast brings to the characters in a way most failing movies of the genre only dream of. Mills for instance is a gungho detective who seems to strive for justice, as if it’s his calling in life. While he understands that criminals run loose, it seems that he overlooks darkness to a degree as he faces the threat of this new killer. The love for his family life seem to go hand in hand with his work, as the safety of his loved one is directly correlated with removing all crime from the streets. Pitt does an excellent job at showcasing the character’s demeanor through emotions. Never do they go over the top, making the audience feel as if they are gazing at an actual life as he is introduced to the struggles and horror faced within the film.
Bouncing off Pitt we have an actor no stranger to phenomenal acting, Morgan Freeman. Its established that Freeman’s character Somerset is a veteran of the police force with days left retirement. At first it may seem like the two characters are complete opposites, but both run under the same moral foundation; just with a few different structural additions to their personality. For instance, Somerset recognizes the apathy within the city, as crime is becoming more of a social norm than x factor. Seeing the world fall under this spell, Somerset looks forward to removing himself from the front view of evil. That being said, he is still a charming and cordial man, an easy task for Freeman, that looks to Mills as his former self- oblivious to the darkness that lurks within society.
To avoid any spoilers for those who haven’t seen “Se7en” I’ll avoid going too much into details about the killer, including the actor’s name. Even though the killer is physically in the film for a brief time, you can’t help but feel his presence within the movie as Mills and Somerset come across his breadcrumb trail of clues. This isn’t a sloppy criminal, but a mastermind that has the patience and dedication that exceeds disturbing. Once on screen, there is no disappointment, if anything only adds more to the cruel acts performed by him.
Rather than relying on the gruesome killings, “Se7en” has a much more cryptic underling that fuels the plot. As the killer leaves clues, we the viewers find ourselves gravitating towards the detectives as they scramble to find the one behind everything. Conversations between characters have an impact on the film, through various themes or just as a seed that grows into another character’s fruition later on. Like the crimes themselves, the script makes just about every word of dialogue associated to another element of the film, making the rewatchability factor skyrocket.
The visual representation transcribes the heinous crimes within the film. Just about every set piece is grim through their designs. Peeling wallpaper, cracked paint, stains on furniture, are dimly lit quarters showcased the human nature in which Somerset perceives the world as.
So much more can be said about “Se7en”; to the fact that a review could quickly turn into a thesis that dissects the overall foundation of what the film into countless subjects for film students to study. If you’re looking for a movie that has both a morbid tone that can easily fit within reality, this is it. Prepare yourself for a truly gripping film that will have you on the edge of your seat towards its finale.