Dark Horizons – “Final Destination” Review

Review

“Final Destination” – A Review by ‘Trainspotter’ (Positive – Major Spoilers)

The other day my film class was subjected to a screening of NEW LINE CINEMA’s upcoming teen drama FINAL DESTINATION. I must say that I was quite impressed with the finished product. The film is wonderfully fast paced and intellegent. It’s just a shame that after all these years it took New Line seven or eight Freddy films before finally bank rolling a film worth it’s twenty-four million dollar budget. I must warn you that although positive there are some major spoilers in my review . . . .

The film begins with Alex Browning (Devon Sawa), a seventeen year old High school kid readying for his French class trip to Paris. All the time leading up to his flight Alex experiences some pretty weird coincidences that hint something ominous about the voyage. Aiding him in keeping his sanity is his best friend Tod (Chad Donella “U.V.” from Disturbing Behavior) and close buddy Billy (Sean William Scott “Stiffler” from American Pie). On the plane Alex has a really disturbing and violent hallucination of the plane exploding, he freaks out and demands he deboards. He gets into a fist fight with class bully Carter Horton (Kerr Smith) and soon the both of them are kicked off flight. Tod and Billy go along to support their friends, Tod leaving behind his older brother George, Carter’s gilfriend Terry Channey (Amanda Detmer) goes along with him, a social outcast who believes Alex, Clear Rivers (Ali Larter) also deboards, as well as the English Lit teacher Miss Valerie Lewton (Kristen Cloke). While everyone is working things out with airport police, the plane actually takes off and explodes on the runway. Suddenly, all eyes are upon Alex.

A month passes and everyone in Alex’s small upstate New York town of Mount Abraham soon are all against him, believing some how he had something to do with the Plane crash. And then, the premonitions return. Alex begins having nightmares. The first nightmare has his buddy Tod accidently slipping and falling onto the retractable clothesline with taking down his mom’s panty hose in the shower. Low and behold, it really happens, and Tod’s killed, death ruled out as a suicide. Meanwhile, the FBI is secretly (but lewdly making their pressence clear) observing Alex, fingering him as a possible terrorist. Distraught and in a state of disbelief over Tod’s death, Alex turns to outcast Clear, a really gloomy doomy goth chick who eases his pain with a healthy dose of reality (they break into the funeral home and examine Tod’s body only to find cuticle lacerations around his neck wound “Why would someone try to claw their way out if they wanted to kill themselves?”,”Why would they say it’s a suicide if it wasn’t a suicide”, Clear quips, and then, the mortician, Mr. Bludworth interupts them (Tony Todd in a deliciously creepy cameo).

As the story progresses, more people die in strange accidents (Terry’s hit by a metro bus, Billy’s decapitated by a window payne, Miss Lewton’s burned alive in her apartment) and Alex and Clear soon realize their lives are in great danger. They were supposed to die on Flight 180 and Alex as his paranoia dawns in such a Fox Mulder homage sums up that the people are dying in the order of their Seating Assignments. Somewhere along the line Alex and Clear have sex and clear becomes pregnant. Meanwhile, Agents Weine and Schreck come up with probable cause and set out to bring Alex. Alex gets wind of his emminent capture and takes off for Clear’s cabin in the woods. I won’t spoil the ending for you but it is intense.

The story was powerful, moving, and frightening. It opens nationwide March 17 , 2000.