That’s right. Despite dying a few films back, the man behind the sadistic, tricycle-loving puppet and face of the blood-soaked Saw franchise is back from the grave for a prequel.
Just like someone who’s woken up to find their head has been strapped into a rusty and dangerous-looking piece of machinery, you’re probably filled with questions. Thankfully, we’re here to provide you with them – and unlike Jigsaw, we don’t even expect anything in return.
Read more: The greatest horror sequels of all time
Read on to discover all the key details you need to know about Saw X, including its release date, plot, trailers and more.
How to watch Saw X
Is Saw X a prequel?
As you’ve probably guessed from its title, Saw X is the tenth instalment and follows 2021’s Spiral: From the Book of Saw, which starred Chris Rock and acted as a spin-off of sorts that was still set in the Saw universe.
That project was written by screenwriters Josh Stohlberg and Peter Goldfinger. They also penned part eight's Jigsaw and have returned to write this latest instalment which is helmed by Kevin Greutert who also directed Saw VI and Saw 3D. Still with us? Cool.
Despite being film 10, Saw X takes us back to near the beginning and acts as a prequel to Saw II. This means we’ll be back in Jigsaw’s murderous heyday and also get to see the return of puppetmaster John Kramer AKA franchise star Tobin Bell.
According to the film’s official synopsis, in Saw X, we'll see “a sick and desperate John Kramer travel to Mexico for a risky and experimental medical procedure in hopes of a miracle cure for his cancer — only to discover the entire operation is a scam to defraud the most vulnerable.
Read more: James Wan details the ropey creation of Saw
“Armed with a newfound purpose, the infamous serial killer returns to his work, turning the tables on the con artists in his signature visceral way through devious, deranged and ingenious traps.”
Movie site Bloody Disgusting later confirmed the movie's exact placement in the Saw movie timeline. Taking to X (formerly Twitter), the outlet shared quotes from producer Oren Koules that said the movie was essentially Saw II.
The site also shared new quotes from Saw X director Kevin Greutert who explains that he was eager to capture the same vibe as the franchise's early instalments. "We go back to what I think the audience most enjoys about John Kramer's character," he said.
Saw X reviews
Jigsaw is back and a new game is afoot - even though this is technically a prequel and therefore an old game... but semantics aside, reviews for Saw X have made their way online, providing our first ratings of the horror franchise's grand return.
The Hollywood Reporter summed things up quite well by saying "This is the sort of horror film in which a character using someone’s intestines as a lasso is simply par for the course." Meanwhile, IndieWire called it the most suspenseful Saw movie yet.
Variety praised its dramatic chops, with Tobin Bell's man-behind-Jigsaw, John Kramer, providing some unexpected humanity - so much so, that the outlet compared him to "Clint Eastwood crossed with Father Merrin from The Exorcist."
The Independent said the movie brought back some much-needed mischief, with Digital Spy reassuring viewers that the film's prequel nature means you don't really have to have seen the other outings to enjoy the series' latest instalment.
Read more reviews below:
The Hollywood Reporter: Tobin Bell Returns to the Central Role, and the Diabolical Gore Is as Creative and Brutal as Ever (4-min read)
IndieWire: Tobin Bell Goes for Broke in Most Agonizing, Suspenseful ‘Saw’ Sequel Yet (6-min read)
The Independent: Brings back some much-needed tongue-in-cheek mischief to the franchise (3-min read)
Digital Spy: Saw X is a welcome throwback to the first Saw movie (4-min read)
Who is starring in Saw X?
As we’ve already mentioned, Bell is back in the world of Saw as Kramer, a man dying of terminal cancer who decides to inflict his appreciation for life on those who are far less appreciative of what they have.
This typically involves kidnapping people and strapping them into sadistic traps and dangerous predicaments where they must choose between lopping off their own flesh and doing the right thing or meeting an even grizzlier end.
In Saw lore, Kramer finally kicked the bucket at the end of 2006's Saw III but continued to appear in flashbacks in later movies. Meanwhile, the Jigsaw puppet appeared long after his death and likely will pop up again in Saw X.
Also back is Shawnee Smith as long-time franchise co-star and Kramer’s drug addict-turned-apprentice and trap designer Amanda Young. She played a big part in the story until Saw III and was last seen via flashbacks in 2010’s Saw 3D and is referenced verbally in 2017’s Jigsaw.
Joining the duo is a cast of new characters played by Synnøve Macody Lund, Steven Brand, Michael Beach, Renata Vaca, Paulette Hernandez, Joshua Okamoto and Octavio Hinojosa.
Saw X trailer
The first trailer for Saw X was released online by Lionsgate in July 2023. It showed Tobin Bell backwith a host of new death traps for "his most personal game yet". It's not for the faint-heated but you can watch it below, if you dare.
Saw X is out in cinemas now