The Final Destination
Runtime: 1 hr 22 min
MPAA Rating: R
Director: David R. Ellis
Starring: Bobby Campo, Shantel VanSanten, Haley Webb, Mykelti Williamson, Nick Zano, Krista Allen
And they call Eli Roth callous?
Review by: TomElce
Added: 7 years ago
The FINAL DESTINATION franchise - never the most noble series (the first is the only worthwhile film, just) - hits what is thus far its low point in the David R. Ellis-directed THE FINAL DESTINATION. Further proving that the 3D bandwagon is not one in which directors hop on for the purposes of good filmmaking, this redundant continuation of the franchise trades in the same redundant, meticulously telegraphed set-pieces of its predecessors while continuing to fit the franchise bill of having approximately zero soul. To make things worse, the acting this time is as dreadful as it's ever been, simple conversations in cafes and shopping centers here turned into the very representation of what we may all a cine-faceplant.
A laughably contrived pile-up-cum-gruefest-cum-collapse at a speedway venue is that which is prophesized by lead protagonist Nick O'Bannon (Bobby Campo, a poor man's Justin Chatwin), Nick naturally uprooting himself, his friends and a few other third wheels so that they miss out on the fun of the film's hollow opening twelve. Naturally, death's not done with these nincompoops, following them to swimming pools, car washes and hospitals in the name of elaborate death sequences, though the only stand-out sequence here is one of a near-death in the aforementioned car wash. Everything else is so rigorously, eye-rollingly built upon before ahead of time that even the most callous viewers won't be able to take sick pleasure from the grim demises on show. The only death that isn't signaled fifteen miles off is one that arrives as a bad joke, a character daring to talk of deja vu and promptly getting struck down.
For his part, David R. Ellis (of another entry in the series, the mediocre FINAL DESTINATION 2) directs with something approaching assurance, yet even then its woefully misplaced assurance. Ellis's filmography stands as that of a schlockmeister not a filmmaker but the prize for hack of the entire production should be bestowed upon screenwriter Eric Bress, who doesn't so much craft a thoughtful or existential plot with a beginning, middle and end so much as he cobbles together a bunch of rote concepts that either bask in unoriginality (a stone flying through the air and taking someone's eye out? How quaint.) or obnoxiously reflect the very movie's existence (as in a last act revelatory collection of deaths in a theatre), all while molding characters who are pretty much all-around jackasses. The FINAL DESTINATION movies have never made for profound horror-themed entertainment, but they've seldom been as insufferable and bereft of soul as this trash. And they call Eli Roth callous?