Opinion: SE7EN’s John Doe Didn’t Succeed as He Planned

Jonathan Barkan
July 3, 2018
Dread Central

David Fincher’s 1995 psychological horror/thriller Se7en is one of most enduring and terrifying films of its kind, standing alongside the likes of The Silence of the Lambs, Zodiac, Frailty, and The Vanishing, amongst others. The tale of two detectives, one new to the force and one on the way out, searching for a serial killer whose victims are chosen according to the seven deadly sins, Se7en was lauded upon release and was wildly commercially successful.

While the gritty, grimy, darkness that pervades throughout the film hovers like a miasma of evil, it’s the ending that has cemented the film in cinema history. I urge those who have not seen the film to avoid reading any further because this piece will delve deep into spoiler territory, ruining a great deal of what makes this film so special.

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One thought on “Opinion: SE7EN’s John Doe Didn’t Succeed as He Planned”

  1. John Doe couldn’t know it, because he was a fanatic, but he really was doing “the work of the devil”, which is crushing the human spirit.

    “Mills was the voice of hope, idealism, and optimism…” and Somerset, who was a defeated man, regains it.

    Not that he becomes an optimist (everything will be OK) but, at least, he rejects apathy and embraces an active pessimism (things will definitely go wrong if we do nothing).


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