The Collector

A thief gets stuck with a mass murderer and his victims in a booby trapped house he attempted to rob.
United States
2009
Feature Film
Realism: 
Plausible
Character Focus: 
Serial Killer Film
Animals: 
Dog
Insects: 
Cockroach
Spider
Wasp
Sadist: 
Rigger
Torturer
Stalker: 
Sneaker
Trickster: 
Gamemaster
Catastrophes: 
Crash
5.04
No booby, all traps!
6
4
8
8
1
3
3
Performances
Plot
Photography
This film was intended as a prequel to 2004’s Saw and seems very much in tone with its better cousin, but never truly feels a part of the blockbuster franchise that popularized torture and puzzle horror. Like Saw, though, its plot is set in a confined location rigged with deadly traps and furnished by vicious metal contraptions meant to kill slowly once remotely triggered.
It’s a gore fest that looks good, real, and therefore painful. The narrative is clustered but hides an intricate concept. The Collector is more than a slasher because the protagonist is given a backstory that makes him resilient and not innocent. He is the fool in the tarot deck. He turns an otherwise much sinister film into a horror action hybrid and a “what if” for the torture porn completist.
The Collector is an aggregation of tense, scary and shocking moments. It suffers from a mythology too compact and covers too much ground at once to keep the mainstream audience focused, but can still be considered second to top tier in its subgenre. The only issue, here, is that the screenplay strives to merge two or three dense concepts into a very simple story spanning over a few hours only.
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