Number 25 on the top 1000 films of all time is this psychological horror/thriller film, David Fincher’s 1995 film Se7en.
What’s it about: Morgan Freeman plays the soon-to-retire William Somerset, an old and wise police detective and Brad Pitt is the cocky, young and arrogant Detective Mills. Together they pursue a sadistic serial killer dubbed John Doe, played brilliantly by Kevin Spacey, who murders people in conjunction with seven deadly sins: lust, pride, greed, gluttony, sloth, wrath and envy.
The good: I really liked the premise behind this film and how it delved in deep into the psyche of a serial killer. I’ve noticed that in society, there is a strong fascination with serial killers and their motivations. Whilst we don’t necessarily condone their actions, they are definitely interesting to learn about. This is one reason why I liked this film: it really took the time to explore John Doe’s character and his motivations for killing. It delves well into his backstory and his psyche. This fleshed him out better as a character and added a sense of intrigue to the film. Kevin Spacey was once again great as the serial killer: John Doe. Playing the role with a deadpan seriousness, he conveyed himself, as a cool, calm and collected character. This is what made him so scary; the fact that he doesn’t show any emotion or remorse for his actions makes him truly frightening. I also quite liked the idea of John Doe using the seven deadly sins as a template for his kills. I felt that this was creative and original enough to keep the film memorable.
The Bad: I felt that this film was anti-climatic in terms of its scariness. I expected to be hiding behind a cushion for the whole film, but I was able to watch it all without a problem. Whilst Kevin Spacey was very scary, I felt that the film would have been scarier if the violence had happened on-screen, rather than off.
The Ugly: Take your pick. Any of the murders in this film can deemed ugly from being beheaded to being forced to eat so much your stomach explodes.
Great acting and an original narrative makes this film awesome, yet being anti-climatic in terms of scariness hurts it. As an after-thought, I also really loved some of the camerawork showing off the city lights at night, where Se7en is set.