The movie Seven or Se7en (1995) is about a serial killer obsessed with the seven deadly sins. It was directed by David Fincher.

Seven stars Brad Pitt and Morgan Freeman as the two detectives in charge of solving the crimes, Gwyneth Paltrow as the wife of Pitt's character, and Kevin Spacey as the killer.

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In a rainy, unnamed American metropolis, Detective Lt. William Somerset (Freeman) (possibly named for W. Somerset Maugham) is preparing to retire from police work after many grueling and unpleasant years of service. In his last week, he is partnered with his replacement, Detective David Mills (Pitt), a much younger, more ambitious detective. He has moved into the city with his wife Tracy (Paltrow) and specifically asked to be placed on the homicide beat as a way to advance his career.

The two of them arrive at crime scene involving a morbidly obese man who has died in his own home after apparently being force-fed to death. He has wires on ankles and wrists.

Their superior (R. Lee Ermey) confronts the two in his office. Mills is placed on a different assignment (by Emery, because of the tension from Somerset against Mills): the gruesome murder of a prominent lawyer who died after being tortured in his own office and being forced to slice off part of his own body. Written on the floor in his own blood is the word GREED. Somerset goes back and does some re-investigating, and finds GLUTTONY written in grease behind a refrigerator back at the original murder scene. His theory is that these crimes are connected, that they are being committed by the same man, and that there will be five more -- each patterned after one of the seven deadly sins.

Somerset and Mills work together, sometimes reluctantly, but with growing fear that the murderer is simply too smart and resourceful to be caught. They find a set of fingerprints at the site of the GREED murder that appear to lead them to a known child molestor and drug dealer -- but when the police arrive at this apartment, they find the man tied to his bed, a virtual mummy after having spent a year immobilized. His hand had been severed and used to plant fingerprints. The word SLOTH is written on the wall.

Out of the blue, Tracy asks to speak with Somerset privately. She reveals to him that she is pregnant and has not told David, and isn't sure if she wants to bring a child into this world. Somerset tells her that a while ago he was faced with the same decision, and convinced the woman in question to abort her baby. He has regretted it ever since.

Frustrated, Somerset decides to cheat slightly by bribing an FBI official to gain information from a (fictitious) government database of "flagged" library books. By feeding in a list of books that pertain to the seven deadly sins, they come up with a list of possible matches, including a man whose name comes up as "John Doe." (One of the books listed is Of Human Bondage, by none other than W. Somerset Maugham.)

When they visit his apartment, he opens fire at them and leads them on a wild-goose chase through the apartment complex.

The inside of the man's apartment contains a darkroom and something akin to a shrine to the man's previous crimes, among which they find evidence of possible future victims. One of them is possibly a prostitute. There is also a receipt from a custom leather-goods fetish shop for an item that winds up being used in the murder of said prostitute (LUST is written on the door outside the murder scene). Mills and Somerset argue about the value of what they are doing -- Somerset is not convinced that him staying on as a policeman is going to make any difference in the world, while Mills is.

A fifth murder turns up the next day: a model is killed in her own bedroom after being offered a choice between living but being disfigured or dying (PRIDE is written in blood on the headboard of the bed). When Mills and Somerset return to police headquarters, they find John Doe himself (Kevin Spacey), smeared with blood, waiting for them.

Doe offers to plead guilty if they allow him to escort them to where he has the remaining murders hidden. On the way there, he reveals to them the nature of his pathology: that he wants to produce in people a reawakened or heightened consciousness about sinful behavior, and that the only way to make them understand is by doing something that could not possibly be ignored.

They arrive on a deserted road far outside of city limits, where a delivery truck pulls up. Inside is a delivery for Mills, which Somerset takes. It is the severed head of his wife. Doe was at his apartment earlier, and had bribed other police officers for information about him and his family. Doe wanted a normal life, but could not have it, and therefore considers himself to be Envy. Appalled, Mills pulls out his gun and kills Doe, becoming the embodiment of Wrath.

In the final scene, Mills is taken away for psychiatric care, and Somerset decides to postpone his retirement. "Ernest Hemingway once wrote, 'The world is a fine place and worth fighting for," Somerset says in a final voice-over. "I agree with the second part."

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