Kevin Greutert's Saw X was just screened for select critics, who are now sharing their thoughts about the new sequel on Twitter.
The highly anticipated tenth entry in the horror franchise sees the return of Tobin Bell's franchise mainstay John Kramer as he heads to Mexico, hoping to receive a miracle treatment for his cancer. Instead of getting cured, he gets scammed—an event that sets a new sadistic Jigsaw game into motion.
Also joining the fun for the series' longest film yet will be Shawnee Smith's Amanda Young, who is a veteran of the franchise, first appearing in 2004's Saw.
Saw X Garners Strong Reactions
A handful of critics have seen Saw X, and their thoughts on the film are notably positive.
Chris Killian from Comicbook.com declared Saw X as "probably the best Saw sequel in about 15 years:"
"While I was at Universal today, the social embargo lifted so I can tell you that ['Saw X'] is gruesome, hard-to-watch, and probably the best 'Saw' sequel in about 15 years. It wedges perfectly between 1-2 and unveils a side of Jigsaw we haven’t seen before. 'Saw' fans will enjoy it."
Nightmarish Conjurings' Shannon McGrew claimed audiences will "gain deeper insight into [franchise villain John Kramer]:"
"Now that the social embargo has lifted I'm happy to announce that ['Saw X'] is one of the BEST additions to the franchise. It brings back the original essence of the first film while also allowing the audience to gain deeper insight into [John] Kramer. Plus, the traps are *chef kiss*"
Kaitlyn Booth from Bleeding Cool shared how Saw X was the first movie in the franchise that she's seen, and that "Tobin Bell really is something in this role:"
"I got to see ['Saw X'], and it was the first ['Saw' movie] I've seen. Tobin Bell really is something in this role, and I can see why interest dwindles without him, and he's in this a lot. I think the fans will like it, but will it convert a new one? I'm still on the fence."
Simon Thompson revealed that he thinks the tenth entry is "bound hands down one of the best in the franchise:"
"['Saw X'] is bound hands down one of the best in the franchise. Putting John Kramer centre stage more than ever works brilliantly and Tobin Bell slays. Amanda’s ‘return’ is executed brilliantly and the traps are amongst some of the best, even when quite simple, plus the story is."
Vannah Taylor agreed with the common sentiment that it "is easily one of the best crafted films in the franchise," one that "delivers a more emotional story:"
"Safe to say that I think ['Saw X'] is easily one of the best crafted films in the franchise. Without sacrificing any of the key ingredients that make a great 'Saw' film, this new installment delivers a more emotional story than I had anticipated…oh and it’s a bloody good time."
The Direct's own Russ Milheim loved the movie, stating that "Jigsaw's latest sadistic game cuts to the bone:"
"Jigsaw's latest sadistic game cuts to the bone, offering a hard-hitting story, some next-level death traps, and strong performances across the entire cast."
Will Audiences Love Saw X?
Interestingly enough, the Saw franchise has never had a fresh Rotten Tomatoes critic approval rating in its entire history. The highest the series has gotten was 50% for 2004's original film, with the lowest being Saw: The Final Chapter at 9%.
The reception seen for Saw X from critics is certainly promising and could point to the film being the best-received movie yet—which is impressive considering that it's the tenth entry.
If the film's performance at the box office lines up with that positive reception, fans should not be worried in the slightest about the series' future.
But what will a Saw XI look like? Will it serve as a prequel like Saw X did, or might it jump back to the story's present day, where plot threads from Jigsaw and Spiral are still dangling?
Only time will tell. But, given how Tobin Bell's involvement seems to be a big part of why this tenth movie is well received, Lionsgate will certainly want to keep him in the picture somehow.
Saw X hits theaters on September 29.