Directed by James Wong [Other horror films: Final Destination 3 (2006)]
While I’ve never had it in me to find Final Destination an amazing movie, I have always held to the opinion that it’s both pretty fresh, in terms of plot, and generally a solid movie. It’s not great, but Final Destination has a lot going for it, and is worth giving a shot.
If there’s any flaw, it could be said that some of the performances aren’t great. Though most of them are okay most of the time, lead Devon Sawa (of Idle Hands fame) was occasionally shaky. That may partially be due to the fact his character was somewhat illogical during portions of the film, so that may just be on me. Others that do well include Ali Larter (House on Haunted Hill), Chad Donella, Kerr Smith (My Bloody Valentine), and Tony Todd (Candyman). Though his character wasn’t that memorable, I also enjoyed seeing Seann William Scott (American Pie) throughout.
The idea of death as an antagonistic force works pretty well here. It seems quite innovative, and definitely something that hasn’t really been seen before. It also makes things tougher for these characters – while it’s not easy, one could feasibly avoid Jason or Freddy, but to avoid death, the lengths one has to take would be quite trying.
I do sort of wish we got more information on Tony Todd’s character, but for a single scene appearance, I guess I was okay with the information that he gave. Well, that and he was also quite quotable (“…and you don’t even want to fuck with that Mack Daddy”), so while I wish we knew more, it’s not all bad.
The elaborate death scenes were all reasonably fun, the most enjoyable probably being the broken mug/alcohol dripping into a computer/computer blowing up/things get fucked sequence about halfway through. Earlier, when someone gets a wire wrapped around their neck and struggles for footing was pretty solid too. Can’t complain about that decapitation; the most shocking, though, has to be the quick hit-by-a-bus scene. Beautifully done.
Also worth mentioning, the opening disaster (being an airplane crash) takes only a handful of minutes, somewhat unlike later films that would add a bit more detail in. The vision of the crash still looks great, and wonderfully frantic and horrifying, but I even noticed when watching it that it didn’t quite feel as involved as later opening disasters did.
One last note, I sort of like the different variations of “Rocky Mountain High” that pop up right before an unfortunate accident befalls someone. It’s a catchy song anyway, and the fact that Death apparently listens to John Denver is okay by me.
Final Destination has never been a movie I utterly loved, but I have always liked them trying something new, and by-and-large, and I think that it worked out well.
5 thoughts on “Final Destination (2000)”