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Final Destination

Final Destination

Genders: Mystery, Horror

Director: James Wong

Writer: Glen Morgan, James Wong

Actors: Devon Sawa, Ali Larter, Kerr Smith, Kristen Cloke

Year: 2000
Run time: 1h 38min
IMDB score: 6.7
Updated: 2 years ago

Movie infomation

Movie name: Final Destination

Genders: Mystery, Horror

Imdb Score: 6.7

Runtime: 1h 38min

Released: 17 Mar 2000

Director: James Wong

Writer: Glen Morgan, James Wong

Actors: Devon Sawa, Ali Larter, Kerr Smith, Kristen Cloke

Company: New Line Cinema


Imdb Link

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Death Becomes You

5/10 Final Destination, or ‘Flight 180' as it was titled right up until the last minute, was a surprise hit of 2000. It was made with a modest budget of $23m it grossed a nice sum of $53m in the US. It was in the UK, however, where the film really shone, up against the massive epic Gladiator at the time the movie managed to gross a none too bad £11m but what made it better was it was a true sleeper hit, it spent 14 weeks in the UK film charts. With no big name actors, and no major publicity the film did so well because of word of mouth and the word was it was damn good.

I admit I was sceptical at first in reading about Final Destination. It seemed like a tired teen horror movie that seemed to be spewing out of America at that time, indeed it was only until about 3 weeks in to it being released that I actually lifted my bum off my sofa and put my bum on the seat in front of the big screen to actually watch the movie. I loved it, and it was made better by the low expectations I had of it. It isn't groundbreaking but it is effectively chilly at times, the acting is surprisingly good and the plot is pretty fresh.

James Wong (X Files) came up with the idea of the movie, about cheating death, and it does seem to have a kind of X Files ring to it. The story goes as follows. Alex (Devon Sawa) is off, with his classmates, to France. Now being in America France is like our version of America, so it's a pretty big deal. While on the plane he has a premonition of the plane exploding, slightly scared, he wakes up and finds that some of his premonition turns out real. Scared for his life, and the others on the plane, he cause a fuss which sees him and several other classmates chucked off the plane. Some of his companions are none too pleased until they see Flight 180 blow up, killing everyone on the plane.

Thus begins the cat and mouse chase by Death himself. One by one, in seemingly ‘accidental' ways, the survivors of the ill-fated crash are dying. While others dismiss the idea of Death coming for revenge, Alex isn't going to let it go and soon he convinces friend Clear (Ali Larter) that it is up to them to try and stop Death himself.

As this happens we can witness some of the most imaginative death scenes ever. Thanks to the movie not having a masked killer doing the rounds the death scenes are not limited to the ‘knife in back/stomach/head/eye' routine. Indeed, the first death scene is both funny and horrific all in one because, like with many of the deaths in this movie, it can really seem as that can actually happen. It gives you something to think about.

The special effects, for a movie with as small as budget as this, are excellent (apparently they did actually spend half of their budget in the SFX). The plane crash is one of the most realistic you will see, its worrying to watch.

For a movie aimed at the teenager end of the market, and for a genre renowned for hammy acting, the people in this movie actually do a good job.

Devon Sawa, no stranger to movies, is perfect at playing the lead role of the troubled Alex. Kerr Smith (Dawson's Creek) does a major turnaround from what you are used to seeing him as, this time he's the typical school jock, flash car, blonde girlfriend, bad temper, but luckily he doesn't play it into overkill. Another nice surprise is Sean William Scott (American Pie, Road Trip, Too many teen movies), while we are used to seeing him as the guy who cracks jokes and makes fun of the others, he plays the geeky guy this time, and he provides us with quite a bit of comic relief. We also have a nice cameo of Tony Todd (aka the Candyman) as Bludworth, who plays the man at the morgue, he is suitably chilling, and is set to play a larger part in the sequel.

Suspense wise this film doesn't fail either. In many films like this you are guessing who will be killed next. Not so in this movie. You are actually told who is going to meet Death next. However this doesn't spoil it. Suspense is carried over by how the person will die. If you know a person is going to die as soon as the camera pans of them, and their all alone, then your waiting in anticipation for them to die, but there are many false scares along the way. Also the suspense is kept up throughout the movie, it doesn't seem to drag too much at any time.

There are very few bad points to the movie. Obviously it will depend on your taste whether you like it or not, whether you consider it too ‘teeny' or too teeny but just right anyway. This film does have fun as well as generate scares.

It is worth noting that there is an alternate ending to the movie and quite a few deleted scenes, namely a main subplot where Clear becomes pregnant. I
think that it was wise to omit these parts, the ending seemed cheesy, but the one we are left with is excellent.

Final Destination, thanks to an imaginative story, nice acting and some elaborate death scenes breathes new life into the tired genre of teen horror. It is not as widely recognized as the Scream trilogy, but in many respects it's better. Lets hope the sequel maintains the high standard it has set.


Different Nicely acted Filled with imaginative deaths


Low on suspense A typical teen horror Going to be shown as in-flight entertainment

4 years ago

Finally a horror film worth a lot of Praise!

10/10 Final Destination has made my list as one of the best horror films in the wake of the teen/slasher revival. in fact it's the most original horror film since the original Scream and it may be better than Scream. There have been many cheap imitations(Urban Legend, i still know what you did last summer, etc) but this one is a keeper.

The film begins with the most exhillerating 15 minutes in recent memory(and if you're afraid of flying be prepared to be shocked). Alex browning(Devon Sawa) is getting ready to leave on a class trip to France. while on the plane he has a vision that the plan is going to explode. Later he awakes from this vison and immediately he goes crazy telling everyone the plane is going to explode. eventually 6 students and alex leave the plane and sure enough moments after the plane takes off it explodes. This is where the story gets interesting by getting off the plane Alex soon realizes that him and his friends have cheated Death and they have to figure out when death is coming back at them.

The one thing i thought was trully good about this film was whenever "Death" came after the remaining students that got off the plane it wasn't some grim reaper type guy you could see. whenever death was around it was very subtle. shadows, wind, etc. death never showed his ugly head. he used everyday thingst o kill his victims. in fact it was stuff that you could accidentally do in your home and that is what makes this film scary.

The acting is great. Devon Sawa proves that he can carry a film. he has great talent. Ali Larter is a terrific actress who is well on her way to becoming the best actress ofher generation, but Kerr smith of dawson's Creek shines here. he was really good and i hope to see him in more films.

Great film worth every dollar i spent to see it. 10

4 years ago

Thrilling with a creepy atmosphere. *** out of ****.

7/10 FINAL DESTINATION / (2000) ***

Starring: Devon Sawa, Ali Larter, Kerr Smith, Chad E. Donella, Amanda Detmer, and Kristen Cloke. Directed by James Wong. Written by Jeffrey Reddick, Glen Morgan and James Wong. Running time: 90 minutes. Rated R (for terror violence and language).

I think it is safe to say every individual has different feelings about death. Some fear it. Others deny it. Most are weary in some way regarding decease. "Final Destination" is a perfect thriller for skeptics, detailing seven confused individuals who accidentally escape demise, discovering the impossibility of defrauding their destined time. The film's atmosphere provokes cringe through a presumably omnipresent force stalking the characters, producing audience participation whether the Grim Reaper is footsteps away from us all.

Devon Sawa ("Idle Hands," "Wild America") is a high school senior named Alex Browning. He and his French class are at an airport flying to Paris for a field trip with their teacher, Ms. Lewton (Kristen Cloke). Once on the plane Alex begins to experience a dream-like vision of the jet exploding in midair killing all of its passengers. As the plane is about to descend, Alex notices his illusion gradually comes to life. This leaves him no choice but to cause a small riot leaving him and six other passengers thrown off the flight.

Students Carter (Kerr Smith), the ignorant jerk and girlfriend Terry (Amanda Detmer), Alex's best friend, Tod (Chad E. Donella), other peers Billy (Seann William Scott), Clear (Ali Larter), Ms. Lewton and Alex watch from the airport as their late flight bursts into flames within minutes after takeoff-leaving these characters suspiciously confused about fate.

The film wastes no time depicting its setup. The rushed opening leads to lack of character development. Whereas the character's personalities are clear, we feel little remorse for many of them. The dramatic premise is horrific and revealing, playing like an extended "The X Files" episode without paranormal detectives. "Final Destination" is creative and full of variety; we witness the plane crash from two different perspectives, as a passenger and an observer.

Days after the crash, the survivors begin to die in unusual manners-almost as if a curse of death was placed on them for cheating demise. Alex digs deeper and discovers his companions are being killed by strange coincidences in the order they would have died from the explosion on the flight. In desperation, he attempts to contradict death for everyone remaining while under superstition of two disillusioned law enforcers.

There are a few overlooked characters in "Final Destination," mostly adults who seem to have an IQ score in the mid-nineties. The teenager's parents are left out most of the story. There is also a briefly creepy appearance by a mortician but is short-circuited by the plot. He is one of the many characters who end up explaining a lot of the plot to us.

Most recent teen horror romps feature a madman chasing characters with sharp objects. "Final Destination" is too smart to fall in that cliche, however. It has a punctual reason for inhabiting teens: these are young people full of energy and life, all the more reason for them to fight death.

The film, written by Jeffrey Reddick, Glen Morgan and director James Wong, never explains why the Alex character has visions of upcoming disasters. The idea makes for an intriguing story, but there are no interesting subplots or side characters here. Therefore without being backed up by supporting stories the filmmakers must thoroughly justify the character's reason for being. Wong seems to overlook Alex's illusions, a concept holding the entire movie together.

Although "Final Destination" provides many edge-of-your-seat surprises and tension, the film likes to poke fun at many of its scenes. Like the average teenage thriller, the movie takes itself seriously about three quarters of the time-leaving the last quarter as comic relief. Certainly having nothing against comedic sequences in horror flicks, I just prefer a movie true to its genre. Even though "Final Destination" is nowhere near perfect, it is the truest film to the teen slasher gender along time.

"Final Destination" is brought to you by New Line Cinema.

4 years ago

Scared Me Good

10/10 I have to admit that when I first saw the previews for Final Destination, I didn't think much. But after reading several reviews that said how good it was, I thought about seeing it, but couldn't because of a busy year.

The story is about a kid named Alex(Devon Sawa) who just so happens to have a fear of flying. With a class of 49 students, they are going to France on a field trip. When Alex has a horrific premonition about dying in plane crash, he freaks out and is kicked off the plane with five other students and teacher. Minutes after getting kicked off, and Alex is calm, the unexpected happens, the plane actually does explode.

Over the next few weeks, however, teachers, the survivors, as well as the police become increasingly suspicious of Alex. Some of his friends even think of him as a god. Anyway, the survivors of the plane crash soon begin dying in gruesome and sometimes horrific fashions. Alex soon discovers that by getting off the ill-fated flight, that he had intervened with Death's predetermined pattern. Death, however, has made a new pattern and Alex must find out what it is to save his friends as well as himself.

I have to say that this movie scared me and my parents good. I also must say that this film deserves a lot praise. Although the plot is not original, however the antagonist is, Death itself. What I really liked about it was that Death never showed itself and that it turned simple everyday items into murder weapons.

Of course no horror movie is perfect. There is one beef I do have with Final Destination. Some of the death scenes are pretty creative and terrifying, but some of them seemed to have been forced. I mean who is going to place a beverage on top of a computer monitor?

Other than this one minor flaw, Final Destination is still a great and scary horror film.


4 years ago

original and scary

5/10 Inventive, effectively eerie spine-chiller is a step up in the teen horror genre. High schooler Sawa has a horrific vision of his plane crashing just moments before its departure on a class field trip. He and several others exit the plane only to discover that it does in fact crash, but things take a shocking turn when the remaining survivors begin to die in the most mysterious ways. Story is intriguing, the suspense flows well throughout, and there are enough violent deaths to satisfy the target audience. The ending is a bit of a disappointment and should have been planned out better, but overall this is one of the better films of the genre. ***

4 years ago