The Final Destination

There was an old saying that went “Death is a Bitch”. Another saying is “Death is inevitable”. Both of these quotes work well for the Final Destination films. At least, they work well for the first three films. David R. Ellis made his own unofficial saying for the fourth installment; “Death is a f***ing Asshole”.

Death’s victims this time around are Nick O’Bannon (Bobby Campo), Lori Milligan (Shantel VanSanten), Hunt Wynorski (Nick Zano), Janet Cunningham (Haley Webb) and security guard George Lanter (Mykelti Williamson), along with a few others. These people narrowly avoided a major car accident(s) at a racing event after Nick warned his friends of his premonition. Just like in the first three movies, Death hunts down the survivors and picks them off one by one, in the order in which they were originally supposed to die. Before long, Nick and Lori discover Death’s pattern and, with the help of their friends and George, try to stop Death’s goal plan.

The new saying “Death is a f***ing Asshole” immediately comes into play in The Final Destination. Death went from offing a good amount of victims (the plane crash in the first, the highway pile-up in 2 and the roller-coaster “accident” in 3). But, he’s never killed this many people at once (the plane crash in the first comes close). I don’t know what Death’s problem was, but he sure was pissed the day of that race. He took it upon himself to kill nearly everybody involved in the race that day. From the racers to the pit crew to the audience, everybody was going to die. I take it Death isn’t a fan of Nascar.

Though this leads to a rather fun and somewhat inventive premonition, the one major flaw in this movie makes it’s presence felt in this opening sequence. The rules of death have been bended. In the past three films, Death usually had to make each death come off as a freak accident. Therefore, everything was caused by accident. Whether it be chains snapping off due to too much pressure or the simple object slipping onto another object, it was all made to look like an accident.

Not this time. Death seems to take care of almost everything himself. Before the car accident(s), Death loosens the screws on the barriers at the stadium. How does he do this? By literally untwisting them. There’s no freak accident that causes it. They just unscrew themselves. The only explanation that could be given is a strong wind, but that’s highly impossible.

This doesn’t ruin the movie, however. It just taints it a bit. Death does make quite a few of the deaths look like accidents (though some of them are more complex then the traps in Mouse Trap). Most of these deaths are fun to watch, with only a select few being weak. I won’t ruin any of the deaths, since they are the main selling point of the film. I will state that the deaths are once again entertaining to watch. If you’re only seeing this movie for the deaths (i.e. all of you), you’ll be pleased.

The acting itself is fine. Everybody does a decent job, with Mykelti Williamson being the stand-out as George. The characters are written well. Cliched, but they work. Nick and Lori make a good protagonist couple, Janet is fine as the “girl you kind of care for yet wouldn’t be mad if she got killed off”, Hunt is a perfect asshole and George is easily the most likable of the crew as the caring security guard that helps the kids out. The other survivors of the crash do their part fine as well, even if they are only present for a minimal amount of time.

The Final Destination is yet another fun installment in the franchise. It does have its problems (the rules of death being bended), but the deaths make up for it. The cast and direction is fine, nothing spectacular but it gets the job done. Though I highly doubt this is the final installment, it wouldn’t be a bad way to end the franchise.

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