Sunday, February 20, 2011

Chill #5: Final Destination

The odds of dying in a similar fashion to any of the Final Destination
charachters are extremely unlikely.
The premise of Final Destination is pretty familiar to most of us by now. The idea that no one really ever cheats death has been the stuff of philosophers since the dawn of time. In Grecian mythology, Sisyphus was condemned to push a boulder up hill for all eternity, because he had fancied himself clever enough to cheat Hades. And like the fate encountered by our Greek friend, the idea of of cheating death in the Final Destination series is an act of utter futility.

I'll just be focusing on the first movie in the series here. For those not familiar, I'll give a reader's digest version of the storyline. The plot surrounds teenaged Alex Browning (Devon Sawa), and his classmates on a school trip to France. After boarding Flight 180 Alex has a vision of the plane exploding and goes into a panic. Alex and six other classmates get off the plane, and to the surprise of everyone except Alex, the plane does indeed suffer an explosion. One by one, however, the number of survivors of flight 180 begins to dwindle. It is up to Alex and the only person who believes him, Clear Rivers (Ali Larter, and yes, that is the characters actual name) to unravel Death's plan, who has come back for those who should have died on that fateful flight.

The movie is a new twist on an old story, and was at least a welcome and fresh twist. The funny thing is, it's virtually the exact same story in all the sequals. And it still doesn't seem to get old. Deadly vision, people are saved, death comes back to take these people, and it's pretty gruesome. But the original film is the best, because that's where the morality tale about cheating death and second chances comes into play best. Afterwards, it was about coming up with more creative, unlikely, and gruesome deaths.


STORY: A cautionary tale for our times, and clever from the outset.

My Rating: Seven pages (out of ten)

SPECIAL EFFECTS: Not bad, big explosions, highly unlikely scenario set up. One of the best pieces of cinematography I've ever seen was the setting up of Tod's bathroom death, with the trail of water on the floor literally "following" Tod, and then receding back again after his demise. It doesn't look like much, but it can make all difference.

My Rating: Six point five fireworks (out of ten)

GORE: Not as much as in the other movies, but it has it's moments all the same.

My Rating: Seven feet of intestines (out of ten)

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