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Seven (DVD, 2004, Single Disc) Reviews
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Seven (DVD, 2004, Single Disc)

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Gluttony, Greed, Sloth, Lust, Pride, Envy, Wrath...Which is Your Favorite? SE7EN

Jun 13, 2011 (Updated Jun 13, 2011)
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:Intelligent, atmospheric psychological thriller; Freeman, Spacey,  and Paltrow.

Cons:Horribly disturbing and liable to give you nightmares.

The Bottom Line: This movie is among the best; a modern classic.  Explore the underbelly of Sin, and it's consequences.


Se7en (1995) Directed by David Fincher

"He's experienced about as much pain and suffering as anyone I've encountered, give or take,...and he still has Hell to look forward to."-Dr. Beardsley, about Sloth.

This is a dark film, and disturbing.  Yet it is a good film, and well worth watching.  It is an atmospheric piece; almost a neo-noir, saved only by the good intentions of the three principles.  It is dark, dank and dismal, and never uses a forty watt bulb if a twenty five will do.

Detective Lt. William Somerset (Morgan Freeman) is retiring.  He is old and tired.  A cerebral man, you can see the chaos and corruption he has lived in all of his adult life weigh heavily on him.  He is partnered, in his last week, with Detective David Mills (Brad Pitt).  Mills is young, brash, cocky, and an adrenaline junkie.  He requested a transfer to this hellhole precinct, because he feels he can do some good here; stop some bad guys.  Det. Somerset views his role as to meticulously collect and catalogue information in case (by some miracle) it is needed by a prosecutor someday.  Somerset is all detached intellect, Mills is mostly passion, drive, and nervous energy.  Together, they would make a perfect detective.

They encounter a disturbing case, a morbidly obese man has been murdered, made to eat until he literally burst.  It is disturbing, moreso for Somerset, who realizes the time this took, and the kind of passion it would take to force feed someone to death.  It looks like it is going nowhere.  Mills is assigned another case; a lawyer has sawed a pound (or thereabouts) of flesh out of himself, and bled to death.  Someone wrote "GREED" in blood on the carpet.  Further developments in the eating death lead Somerset to look behind the refrigerator, where he finds the word "GLUTTONY" scribed in the greasy coating on the wall.  Suddenly, Somerset realizes what they are dealing with; a man on a mission.  He is preaching a sermon, with the Seven Deadly Sins as his topic, and there will be five more bodies if they don't stop him.

While the intense psychological manhunt for the killer with the Dante fetish unfolds, a quieter drama also plays out.  Tracy Mills (Gwyneth  Paltrow) David's wife, makes an effort to get to know Somerset, a course of action that surprises Somerset, and dismays David.  The two men do not really get along; Somerset is too hidebound, and too jaded. Mills is too cocky, and too impatient, and too cynical.  But they do complement each other.  And Somerset is the only one that Tracy has to turn to with her problems; a man she has known for less than two days.  That tells you something about her life....

In many ways, I found Mills overdone.  Brad Pitt is a great actor, capable of great subtlety; therefore this man in overdrive is the way he was written.  He had a few moments of brilliance where you could see he was not just a dumb jock with a gun, but they were too few, and too brief to really highlight the upside to his character.  On the other hand, Morgan Freeman stole lots of scenes just by being quite and unassuming.

In many movies of this type, you are introduced to seven or eight suspects, and one by one, they move to prime suspect, and then die.  This movie does not play that game.  There is very little question of who done it; once John Doe (Kevin Spacey) is introduced, you know whodunit.  The thing you don't know is why he dunit, and what he will do next.  Can Somerset and Mills stop him from completing his Opus Magnus of Sin and Murder?  That is the question.
Sloth, Lust, Pride, Envy, Wrath...Can they prevent even one of the five murders to follow?

This is a classic of crime drama, of the psychological thriller, and of the evil that lurks deep inside us all.

Appropriately enough, this review is Lean-N-Mean at 666 words.  It is also entered in the Made in the USA Write Off.


Recommend this product? Yes

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