Final Destination 5
This review first appeared in the Sunday Star Times, 4th September 2011
Are we there yet?
If you saw the first of the franchise in 2000, you may well have been impressed by the clever narrative device which has a group of teenagers escape death in a plane crash, only to be picked off one by one in a series of ingeniously played out fatalities. Suffice it to say, that contrivance has served three sequels well enough to warrant the latest, but this time it’s in 3D (like you need blood spurting out of the screen at you) – and strangely enough, it still works.
The characters are thinly drawn cliches, and the script is banal at best, but to be fair, that in itself has become a hallmark of teen horror movies. Where Final Destination 5 outruns it competitors (such as the appallingly derivative and worn-out Scream 4) is in its ability to design inventive methods of knocking off its characters. It feels wrong to applaud the way in which someone dies, but with the audience laughing at every skewering and slaying, it’s hard not to commend this as completely absurd fun.
There are clever nods – the re-use of veteran Candyman actor Tony Todd, and apt naming of the business where the young people work – “Presage Paper”. Above all, it’s a handy lesson in kitchen hazards – and one big Osh nightmare.