A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
A group of employees from Presage Paper prepares to go on a business retreat. Sam (Nicholas D'Agosto), who would rather be a chef than a salesman, has a fearful premonition while riding on the bus; a bridge collapses, killing dozens. Acting quickly, he saves his girlfriend, Molly (Emma Bell), his boss (David Koechner), and five other co-workers. Unfortunately, since they were supposed to die on the bridge, death begins stalking them one by one, killing them in "random" accidents. Can the survivors discover a way to break the chain?
Is it any good?
Oddly, this movie is a bit better than its predecessors (though that's not really saying that much). Thanks to the huge success of the fourth and "final" The Final Destination, FINAL DESTINATION 5 became an inevitability. It's the feature directorial debut of Steven Quale, who was a second-unit director on Avatar and also helmed Aliens of the Deep; he has lots experience with 3D. Not surprisingly, then, the use of 3D here is pretty good -- especially the smashing title sequence.
The characters are a bit more sympathetic and humorous, and, unlike in the fourth film, they tend to show empathy for their fallen friends and co-workers. The death sequences, as always, are elaborate Rube Goldberg-like traps, with misdirection and deception at every turn. It's fascinating that these sequences tend to elicit a squirmy, giggly reaction from audiences rather than dread or terror. This is a purely cathartic, visceral experience, not having anything to do with characters or plot. But other than that, any redeeming social value is negligible.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the movie's violence. How does the 3D affect the impact of the movie's gory, grisly murder scenes? Is any of it intended to be realistic?
Why would audiences want to see a movie like this? Is there something cathartic about facing death in this way?
Are humans really subject to fate, or do we have free will? How much control do we really have over our lives?
- In theaters: August 12, 2011
- On DVD or streaming: December 27, 2011
- Cast: David Koechner, Emma Bell, Nicholas D'Agosto
- Director: Steven Quale
- Studios: New Line, Warner Bros.
- Genre: Horror
- Run time: 92 minutes
- MPAA rating: R
- MPAA explanation: strong violent/gruesome accidents, and some language
- Last updated: September 21, 2019
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