This "cheese & gristle" crime movie was worse than I expected, and in the last scene, acknowledges that it is "a movie-of-the-week, a fuckin' tee-shirt at best". I am bumping it up to three stars for snappy direction/editing, some impressive frames and even more impressive set design. Kevin Spacey's performance is also a saving grace. He's a great actor, one of the best, and it'll be a shame if he never works again.
2.8 stars. A starkly nasty film that I fear tempts, teases and implicates its audience like the grubbiest vigilante or rape revenge flick. Maybe the tension being the direct-to-video ethos and the incredibly slick cinematic execution is what gives 'Se7en' its particular frisson. I also fear that it kick-started the 'Saw' franchise and torture porn genre more broadly. But if it did that's because it's bloody effective
Revolutionary (at the time) in it's use of cinematography with it's great gritty atmosphere as depression and sadness shines through the movie. A great team pairing of Brad Pitt and Morgan Freeman, but sadly I felt that the ending was obvious when I saw it - maybe I'm too sick and gruesome in my mind since I can predict such an ending? Am I really a serial killer in the making?
If taken as a conventional thriller, then the film might appear adolescent, if not slightly kitsch; its gimmick, combined with Fincher's brand of 'Ikea nihilism', threatening empty sensationalism. However, approaching the story more as an allegory, in which the setting is a kind of purgatory, & where characters become arbiters of moral conviction, it succeeds in an exploration of some interesting & unsettling themes.
Thinking about incredible role of Spacey as a punisher of everything that is evil and wrong in world we live in made me to decide to give a big oportunity to this film who authenticates director's earlier talent for film and gloryfing acting of all of three characters.