92 Min | Horror – Thriller | August 2011
IMDB Rating: 5.9
Director: Steven Quale
Starring: Nicholas D’Agosto, Emma Bell, Arlen Escarpeta
Final Destination 5 Review: In a sense, if you’ve seen one Final Destination movie you’ve seen them all. If you’re not familiar with the concept, the movie thrive on the idea that “death” is a conscious entity that actively chooses when and how people die. In Final Destination 5, this typically is prefaced by an ethereal black shadow (or haze) that serves as an indicator to the audience that the gore is about to fly. When the first movie was released in 2000, it was a novel idea, and, in this critic’s opinion, made for a tense and fun take on a genre populated with masked slashers and ridiculously overblown monsters.
The question, then, is this, does the fifth installment break any new ground or is it a retread of everything that’s come before? Though the first hour is a mind-numbing rehash, the final third of Final Destination 5 actually asserts some brainy aspirations. In many ways it tries to address some heady themes centered on mankind’s survival instinct and just how horrific we as a species can be when the chips are down. This is admirable, and the final moments of the movie take things a step further by making an effort to neatly tie things up with the rest of the series. All of that said, the movie doesn’t do nearly enough to distinguish itself as a standout horror feature (especially when compared to its predecessors).
These movies are all about the grotesque and elaborate death-trap setups that ultimately lead to the grisly demise of characters we can’t stand. Here, the payoff never measures up, as the characters are dispatched in dull ways that were clearly designed to make use of gimmicky 3D effects (a-la the 3D iteration of Friday the 13th). And every time the inevitable death occurs, the movie feels it’s necessary to pull a somewhat unexpected distraction maneuver that may or may not elicit an annoyed chuckle from viewers. There are some admirable moments in Final Destination 5, but here’s hoping that this is the final iteration of the long-running Rube Goldberg style death extravaganza.