Every new horror movie strives to find a creepier, scarier level of thrills or aims to out torture-porn the last torture-porn shocker. But I think it’s time to acknowledge that we really have seen it all — all the hacked off appendages, the soupy intestines, the needles in live flesh. Maybe it is time for writers like Marcus Dunstan, stepping behind the camera here for the first time after penning Saw IV–VI (and the first three Feast films), to find a new way to get their jollies.
The Collector starts with a degree of promise, though — imagine an ex-con burglar named, curiously enough, Arkin (Josh Stewart) breaking into a house to discover a crazed, leather-mask-wearing killer (Juan Fernandez) inside, and must become a hero/savior. But The Collector circles right back around to The Strangers meets Saw-land that Dunstan supposedly knows best.
The collection of chopped body parts and artfully rendered death tableaus no longer threaten to upend our stomachs or takeover our dreams because, thanks to our deadened sensibilities, such nightmares are tiring. Grade: D