A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Final Destination has intense scenes of violence and gore peppered throughout. The death of the victims in these scenes is not caused by another person, but instead by circumstance and "chance" instigated by the shadowy figure of Death, who is sometimes seen as a blur in the background. There is very little sexual content aside from a make-out scene and a glimpse of a naked women in a magazine. Profanity is limited to our introduction to the high school students at the beginning of the film.
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What's the story?
If the grim reaper has chosen our time, can we escape it? Does death have a design? If so, and we figure it out, can we change it? These are the questions high school senior Alex (Devon Sawa) begins to ask. Just after taking his seat on a flight, Alex has a very vivid vision that the plane carrying himself and his classmates on a field trip to France will explode shortly after takeoff. He freaks out, and is taken off the plane with five others who somehow get caught up in his hysteria. Sure enough, as Alex and a classmate argue at the gate, the plane takes off without them and explodes. One-by-one those six who escaped the plane begin to die under curious circumstances. Alex becomes convinced that the six of them cheated Death and now Death is coming to get them in the order they would have died on the plane. Alex, still having visions, is determined that if he can figure out Death's design, he can save the lives of those who got off the plane.
Is it any good?
FINAL DESTINATION has a convincing enough plot, unfortunately one that by now has become cliché. So desperate is this film to create an aura of suspense and foreboding that by the end of the film, any object in existence could be a weapon in the hands of the grim reaper. This certainly makes for suspense, but not good suspense.
Perhaps the film loses a lot of ground here when, in the opening sequence of the film, the camera lingers on the cover of the book Death of a Salesman. This is the degree to which the filmmakers are trying to spook us and fail; by referencing the title of a book that has nothing to do with the death of anyone. Watching this film merely becomes a countdown to gore as curiosity over "how" someone will get it overshadows any curiosity over "who" will get it. Overall, the film proves disappointing.
Talk to your kids about ...
- In theaters: March 17, 2000
- On DVD or streaming: September 26, 2000
- Cast: Ali Larter, Devon Sawa, Kerr Smith
- Director: James Wong
- Studio: Anchor Bay Entertainment
- Genre: Horror
- Run time: 98 minutes
- MPAA rating: R
- MPAA explanation: violence and terror, and for language
- Last updated: September 21, 2019
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