Final Destination Fails To Arrive On Time, Michelle’s Review!

Final Destination 5 Review

I’ve always been a fan of the Final Destination series. Unlike the SAW series (later movies), the death traps were always inventive and gave genuine jump out of your seat moments. The thing that always set Final Destination apart from other horror films was the idea that the “boogieman” actually wasn’t there. There was no Freddy or Jason for the characters to confront. They were literally up against fate or death itself. The unseen enemy is always scarier than the real thing. Up until the 3rd of the latest installment I was enjoying every moment of this movie.

The story works well for the first 2/3rds of the movie but completely falls apart in the last act. I left the theater wondering what just happened. It was a by the numbers Final Destination then at some point the writers and the producers decided to completely abandon the entire premise of the franchise for a needless, unnecessary change in it’s internal logic.  It’s as if writers Eric Heisserer, and Jeffrey Reddick or some executive decided the “unseen” bad guy wasn’t enough for today’s audience so they decided to throw in a last minute bad guy. This went against the franchise’s own rules!

If that wasn’t bad enough the reason for turning one of the characters into a bad guy was completely turned upside down again in the last few minutes. It made absolutely no sense.  Director Steven Quale (who worked as 2nd Unit Director on Avatar) does a great job setting up and executing all the death traps. He learned at the feet of Cameron and as I said before, this is probably one of the best uses of 3D that I’ve seen in awhile.

I rail against 3D in almost every review, but this movie uses 3D in a way that makes sense.  The 3D is very detailed and the depth of field adds a new layer to the experience. Clearly, this movie was made with 3D in mind. Almost every death trap has a moment where eyeballs, statues, metal rods, etc. come right at you. I know I said a few weeks ago that if I have to pay a premium for a 3D movie, then I want things coming at me and to feel like I’m on a Thrill ride.  This movie tests that statement and after awhile I admittedly got tired of things flying at me.  In short it delivers exactly what I said I wanted in a 3D movie.

You notice that I’ve yet to mention the cast of this movie, because frankly who cares? There are no standout performances and most of the actors in this I’ve never heard of, they are only there to get killed off. I will say the writers do a decent job of setting everyone up, but again everyone comes across as interchangeable. I did enjoy the few on camera appearances by the great Tony Todd – he doesn’t get enough work!

Can I just mention the fact that I hate sitting through a four-minute credit sequence before a movie even starts!

As a fan of the Final Destination Series, there’s a lot to like here – the 3D isn’t just a gimmick it’s an integral part of the movie, fun deaths, and decent cast but the entire thing is marred by a horrific (and not in a good way) third act. The movie fails to arrive on time, but only by a few minutes.

Final Grade B-

EM Review by
Michelle Alexandria
Originally posted 8.14.2011


1 Comment

  1. “Final Destination 5” may be the ‘final’ destination for this phenomenon.  With a final exception, this is the same plot – the initial disaster taking place on a long bridge and 3D adds very little.  A bloody retread.
    GRADE = “C”

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