Another franchise that seemingly has no end, by now Final Destination is looking toward finding a new audience of thrill-seeking teens rather than banking on fans of the films of old. Unfortunately, however, this new effort isn’t a patch on the earlier movies.
En route to a team building exercise, a team of co-workers are waiting in traffic on a suspension bridge when Sam (D’Agosto) awakens from a disturbing vision. Seeing their bridge collapse and many of his friends suffer tragic deaths, he urges them off the bus to safety, before low and behold, the tragic events plays out as he foresaw, only this time, they’re watching from the sidelines. When a couple of the saved few soon come to untimely demises of their own, however, each in remarkably unfortunate and coincidental circumstance, the group fear Death hasn’t forgotten about them after all.
The exact same formula, now for a fifth time, if the producers expected Final Destination 5 to feel fresh, they were sorely mistaken. Gone is any sense of imagination, invention, creativity or tension as the complicated deaths feel more convoluted than anything else. The concept of the Final Destination movies is certainly interesting, but so many releases in it’s become utterly predictable; there’s no suspense or real threat because you know how it’s all going to play out.
The 3-D effects are all well and good but likewise, they’re all so obvious, while the excessive gore does little to shock. In front of the camera, most of the actors are typically overzealous in their performance – Nicholas D’Agosto in particular falling foul – but Emma Bell is enjoyable, as are David Koechner and P.J. Byrne in side-roles.
More worrying is the script from writer Eric Heisserer, whose work we’ll see again later this year for the The Thing prequel. We can only hope he’s stepped it up on that one because the similarly languid A Nightmare On Elm Street reboot last year didn’t do much to inspire confidence either.
A link into the earlier films at the close of 5 is nice, but adds little overall, and though it might be fun with a bunch of friends on a Friday night, hopefully this is the end for what has become a very tired franchise.