Updated: Nov 16, 2019
It was 2009, and the Saw franchise was already on its 6th movie and regardless of your opinion of that series, it’s fair to say that it kicked the door open wide for horror as a genre in regards to the slew of movies that came out with a similar theme, and to horror getting more widely released and noticed once more.
One of the titles that shared similar themes, but managed to head in its own direction was The Collector and its 2012 sequel, The Collection. Both movies were co-written by Marcus Dunstan & Patrick Melton whose horror writing credits also include: 4 of the Saw movies, all three Feast movies, Piranha 3DD and the recent, Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark. Marcus also directed The Collector and its sequel, so they know a thing or two about the genre.
The Collector told of Ex-con Arkin, (Josh Stewart – Interstellar, The Dark Knight Rises) who plots a robbery to pay off a debt that he owes. Things don’t go as planned on the night however as someone else also their eye on the property and has rigged it with elaborate traps. What makes this different, is that the traps are mainly there to entrap & incapacitate rather than kill, because just like it says in the title, the person responsible is a collector, albeit a collector of people.
As a collector though he’s only after specific people for his collection and those he doesn’t want, end up dead.
The Collector garnered mixed reviews, mostly leaning toward negative by the consensus that people had gotten bored and a little desensitised to what was being labelled as “torture porn.” A phrase that started getting thrown around at any horror film with a healthy dose of gore, since it was first used to describe Eli Roth’s Hostel.
Personally, I enjoyed the film. Sure it had its faults, mainly being the logistics behind the mystery collector somehow setting up rooms full of elaborate traps and hazards, rather than just, I don’t know, using some sort of knock-out gas, threatening his targets at gun/knifepoint etc. But I still found it to be a good horror movie, with an ending that I enjoyed.
One year later, 2010 rolled around and shooting began on the second film, The Collection, which was released in 2012. This sequel began with an over-the-top and improbable, but entertaining, blood-soaked intro and from there, things moved up by this time having a group of people trying to track down and capture or kill the Collector, in his own lair. Sure, those Saw similarities were still there, and just like the previous movie, it got mixed reviews that mainly leaned toward the negative. And just like the previous movie, I found it to be an entertaining horror with a good ending that was very satisfying.
And now we’re getting a third film in the series titled, The Collected.
Writer/director Marcus Dunstan is back at the helm with Patrick Melton co-writing again, which is good news for fans as this means the movie will most likely keep the same tone and feel as the previous ones whilst still managing to keep its own identity.
Josh Stewart is returning to play the role of Arkin and The Collected will also see the return of Emma Fitzpatrick who will be reprising her role of Elena, from the second film. New to the franchise, but by no means new to horror fans, will be Tom Atkins. Tom’s been in genre favourites such as, The Fog, Escape from New York, Halloween 3, Maniac Cop…the list goes on; so I’m especially interested in what he will be bringing to the series.
Personally, I’m looking forward to the movie. As much as I’m enjoying the creepy yet cerebral phase that horror is currently going through at the cinema, I can’t wait to see something (hopefully on the big screen) that isn’t afraid to get gory.
Filming just started last week so I’m sure we'll be hearing more on the movie fairly soon.
Presumably, this will be the last film in the franchise because unless the fourth one takes places at a convention titled collectorama or collectormania , then I think they’ve used up all the plausible titles.