Final Destination 5 – Film review

Keeping on reaping

Release date: 26 August 2011
15 * 92 minutes
Director: Steven Quale
Cast: Nicholas D’Agosto, Emma Bell, Miles Fisher

The opening credits tell you everything you need to know: random portentous objects (scissors, log, coffee cup, kettle, knives, fire extinguisher etc), get chucked at you through smashing glass, in needle-sharp, poke-you-in-the-eye 3D. If you don’t mind repetition, love a brilliantly horrible death, and like having your peepers assaulted – FD5 could be the Friday night film of the year.

The disaster du jour? A collapsing suspension bridge, where a bus-load of corporate retreaters are about to plummet to their deaths before a well-timed premonition. As a set-piece, it’s phenomenal – the best of the series, perhaps, for relentless invention and gleeful disgustingness. A tough act to follow, yet FD5 moves efficiently through the ensuing fate-led kills, playing craftily on the well-versed audiences’ expectations that any loose screw or untied shoe will be the catalyst for the next catastrophe. Annoying, then, that the characters aren’t as savy as the audience, forced to wait while a new set of types work out the rules – a flaw which a Tony Todd cameo and a so-so twist don’t redeem.

Still, like the Saw films it usurps, Final Destination was never about emotional truth. FD5 improves on FD4 and matches 3, and while it doesn’t quite have the brains of 1 and 2 it does showcase some of the best 3D around; less like you’re looking through a window, more like your having your face smashed repeatedly into one.

Anyone who thought The Final Destination was the final Destination couldn’t be more wrong. This dangerously wobbly wheel’s going to run and run.

Rosie Fletcher