The Final Destination (Blu-ray)

January 28, 2012 6 Min Read

Review by: Matt Brighton

Plot: What’s it about?

About ten years ago DVD Authority was just getting off the ground, I was receiving DVD’s from many (at the time) “new” studios and one of the early supporters of the DVD format was New Line. New Line, at the time, didn’t have much to crow about but they had some pretty good titles that found life on the DVD format. I’m referring to films like “Boiler Room”, “Frequency” and the series in question here; “Final Destination”. The “Final Destination” films were a launching pad for some young actors and the first starred Ali Larter and Seann William Scott. From there they went downhill. Still, they had massive camp value and the first was enough to inspire three sequels, the last of which came out last year and thus making this franchise nearly a decade old. Not bad for a film that kills all of its starts in every occurrence, right? What the first had in originality, the subsequent films didn’t do much to improve upon. I mean, if it ain’t broke then don’t fix it, right? Well not only did they not fix these films, but they were literally carbon copies off one another. The only thing that’s really different about the four movies are the ways in which they die and the opening sequence showing what disaster kills them all. So with that said, let’s dive into “The Final Destination”.

We meet the major players of this film as they’re attending a NASCAR-like event and, wouldn’t you know it, there’s an accident that kills them all. If you’ve seen the first three films (or any, for that matter) you’ll know that the main character (Nick O’Bannon) has some sort of vision and they manage to get out of the stadium in the nick of time, thus altering Death’s ultimate plan. We’re treated to a myriad of character types including a redneck racist and his wife, a security guard who’s also a recovering alcoholic (Mykelti Williamson), and of course the four main characters who all think they’re indestructible. As the film progresses, we see the characters meet fates that amaze even me, and if this set of circumstances actually has ever happened, then color me tickled pink. Suffice it to say that “The Final Destination” lives up to its name and, again, if you’ve seen the first three films then you’ve – in essence – seen this one as well. I just hope that the Grim Reaper can put his touch on this franchise, because it wore out its welcome long, long ago.

Video: How does it look?

“The Final Destination” is one of the latest batch of films that is shown in 3-D. I’m not really a fan of 3-D so I watched the 2-D version that’s also included, but admittedly I did pop on the glasses and watched some selected sequences in 3-D. The 2.40:1 VC-1 HD transfer seems to be lacking. I noticed plenty of grain in the early shots and colors seemed all over the map. For a new to Blu-ray movie, I was pretty let down but perhaps it being in 3-D had something to do with it? Yeah, didn’t think so. Contrast seems on target as did the black levels, but it just didn’t have that HD feel to me. Maybe I was polarized by what I was actually trying to comprehend on screen. Still, New Line has done some fine work in the past so I’ll let this one slide.

Audio: How does it sound?

As unsatisfactory as the picture was, the DTS HD Master Audio track was a different story. There are plenty of instances in which things catch fire, blow up and in general use the surround channels for all they’re worth. Dialogue is very strong and constant as well. I won’t describe each death, but I will say that the ways in which they do perish are somewhat original (contrasting to what I said above) and they do sound good. I know that sounds morbid, but I was looking forward to seeing how these folks died. And the opening sequence in which the race car crashes really was impressive.

Supplements: What are the extras?

Unfortunately there aren’t a lot of extras here save for a bonus digital copy of the disc, you do get a couple pairs of 3-D glasses and there are two alternate endings, but neither one really would have had an impact on how much I disliked the movie. There is a look at the new “Nightmare on Elm Street” re-make as well, though I can’t imagine this will be much of a draw in a few years when that film is already on Blu-ray. Lastly, we get a look at the death sequences and how they happened with a little too much detail at times.

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