SE7EN (1995) from Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy; Greg Wroblewski)

Se7en is one extraordinary film.

It chronicles an intricate series of crimes based upon the seven deadly sins, created by a true artist. Not every artist creates beauty. Michelangelo had his way to immortality, and John Doe has his own path. His is the art of savage and ironic killing, in which everyone is killed by his own weakness.

The killer not only manages to lead the police from crime to crime with a series of clues, but he also makes the investigating police officers part of his twisted creation, so that they participate in it like characters in a Pirandello play, not really knowing whether they have an independent life outside his puppetry.

The script is complex, the morality is ambiguous, the acting is terrific, and the dialogue is just great, possibly the best ever written. "Just because the fucker's got a library card doesn't make him Yoda". In general, it's an intelligent film about intelligent (if unlikeable) people.

The intricate puzzle of the crimes is only half of the film's cult appeal. Director David Fincher also created a neo-noir look that has been often imitated in the intervening years, a look that can best be described as Art Grunge, Vomit Division.


The corners of the rooms are filthy. The lightbulbs are all burning out. The plaster is coming off the walls. The applicances all seem to come from your great-grandmother's house. Insects crawl everywhere. The sun never shines. Every table and chair is piled high with atmospheric artifacts. And they have to examine many of the rooms with flashlights. Creepy stuff.

DVD info from Amazon.

The special edition has a tremendous amount of features on two disks

Disk One has a 2.35:1 widescreen anamorphic print which was completely remastered from a negative specifically for this DVD. It could not be much better.

Disk Two has are four separate commentary tracks, deleted and expanded scenes, two alternate endings (one shot, one storyboarded), and a mountain of other things - including John Doe's notebooks. for example.

Other memorable quotes:

You're no messiah, you're a movie of the week. You're a fucking t-shirt at best.

When a person is insane, do you know it? Maybe you're just sitting around reading "Guns and Ammo", masturbating in your own feces, and you just stop and go - wow, it is amazing how fucking crazy I really am.

Ernest Hemingway once said the world is a fine place and worth fighting for. I agree with the second part.

A landlord's dream - a paralyzed tenant with no tongue who pays his rent on time.

He's experienced about as much pain and suffering as anyone I've ever encountered - and he still has Hell to look forward to.

The Critics Vote

  • General consensus: Three to three and a half stars. Ebert 3.5/4, Berardinelli 3/4, Maltin 3/4, Apollo 84. I believe it is underrated. Rather than caling it a three star movie, I believe it is better described as a four star movie that many people will despise or find offensive.

  • It was nominated for only one Oscar - best editing, although imdb members now rate it among the 100 best movies of all time.

he People Vote ...

  • With their votes ... IMDB summary: IMDb voters score it 8.1 (top 100 of all time), Apollo users 86/100.
  • With their dollars ... it did great. $100 million in the USA, more than $100 million overseas, and $40 million in rentals. With more to come from DVD sales!
My guideline: A means the movie is so good it will appeal to you even if you hate the genre. B means the movie is not good enough to win you over if you hate the genre, but is good enough to do so if you have an open mind about this type of film. C means it will only appeal to genre addicts, and has no crossover appeal. D means you'll hate it even if you like the genre. E means that you'll hate it even if you love the genre. F means that the film is not only unappealing across-the-board, but technically inept as well.

Based on this description, this film is a very strong B. Although it is a brilliant movie, the highly stylized art direction, the moral ambiguity, and the graphic nature of the crimes keep it from being a completely universal film.

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