(All Grades Are) Final Destination 5 Review

Final Destination 5 Review
by Bret Dorman

I’m not saying that Final Destination is a good franchise. I’ve seen 3 of them. Maybe 4. I don’t know. All I know is that is you have ‘Final Destination‘ in your title… you can only be so good.

Well, Final Destination 5 is probably the best a Final Destination sequel can be. That’s not to say it is ‘good’, but it is a lot of fun.

The Story: People are supposed to die on a bridge but Sam (Nicholas D’Agasto) has a vision and saves them. Yay! But then death comes for them all and kills them in brutal ways. Yay! Also, Tony Todd is Death. Yay!

Here’s my Final Destination recap/review:

FD1: The Plane. I know I saw it, can’t remember most of it. Including the deaths.

FD2: The Log Truck Accident. I know I saw it, can’t remember most of it. I know it gets crazier in its deaths though.

FD3: The Roller Coaster. Can’t remember if I saw it.

FD4: The Race Car Crashes. Didn’t see it just because I didn’t get around to it. Oh well..

FD5: The Bridge. Sam is on a bus filled with his friends and VERY recent ex-girlfriend and he dreams up this awesome bridge scene where everyone dies. Their deaths get more and more awesome and after every one you cheer and clap because of how gruesome it is. Then… Sam wakes up and its all a dream… or was it? A premonition perhaps? Things start happening just like the premonition and he saves his friends! Woohoo! The audience likes that becuase now we get to kill them all over again!

Final Destination 5 made me realize just how awesome those opening scenes can be. You just get to have fun and kill off people in the best ways you can imagine. Then you get to have all the real stuff later. I’m all for killing everyone right at the beginning then again throughout the course of the movie. Bring on the body count!

Another thing I realized while watching one of the Final Destinations was how much I liked the over-the-top death stuff. At one point I was watching one thinking “Why doesn’t death just give them all heart attacks or kill them in a simpler way? Why go through all this cause and effect/mouse trap type stuff?” But then I realized just like this year’s Green Lantern, the fun doesn’t come in simply getting the job done, it comes in how crazily complicated can we make this?

The deaths in FD5 start out really complicated. And I ate it up. Then as the story progressed they became quicker and more for jolts. Okay sometimes that is cool too. And FD5 introduced a new aspect of the story, which is if you kill someone after surviving the near-death at the beginning you can take over their years left to live. Now obviously this makes no sense but don’t think about it too much. Just have fun.

Couple negative things though. Isaac, the ladies man, is played by P.J. Byrne. And I’m all for breaking normal stereotypes and junk, but I’m sorry P.J. Byrne, you were not a convincing ladies man. Looks aside (not that he is bad looking, but come on), you played an annoying character well, but not quite charming enough to get the ladies (which in the movies defense we never see him get, only talk about).

Also, this movie needs a villain. Tony Todd sort of comes in and plays ‘Death’ but I would like to see him actually have a role in the deaths. Perhaps he turns on a switch somewhere or does something that sets off the mouse trap like series of events that end up somehow killing the character.

Later there is a twist and we actually get a human villain. This was great. The actor playing him was great and really was into the whole ‘let’s act crazy’ thing which I bought into a lot as well. It’s just the kind of villain a movie like this needs.

The last complaint is the CGI. This movie has too much CGI and for a slasher film (at heart) it needs more practical effects.

All in all though the acting was as good as it could be for a FD movie. The pacing I thought was pretty quick and the deaths were all enjoyable and for the most part in plain view and gruesome. This movie not only followed the FD formula, it built on the mythology, and had some creativity in the death scenes. If this is what a FD sequel is capable of I hope they make more and keep upping the ante because this could be a franchise that I look forward to seeing more of.

In Conclusion, I’m not a fan of the Final Destination Series. I’m not against it, it just never did anything for me. But Final Destination 5 showed this franchise has a lot of potential and is a fun ride to boot. It doesn’t ‘make up’ for the others, but I hope they make more like this one if they plan to keep the franchise alive.

Final Grade: B

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