I can hear it now, WHY AREN’T YOU REVIEWING THE FIRST TWO? Well the answer is that I don’t like the first two. Hate me if you want I don’t really care. The first two are not that great. The first one is…well it’s better than the second one. The second one is poorly acted and really annoying. The actors in the second one make me very aware that I am watching a movie so I’ve only seen it once or twice. The first one has bitch faced asshole Devon Sawa and Ali Later and her name is Clear. Seriously her name is fucking CLEAR. Not CLAIRE like a normal person, CLEAR. How much do you think I’m going to put up with that? Like two viewings at most. This is why I don’t like the first two movies. The funny thing is I think people generally hate the third movie more than the first two (and lets not get into the crappy 4th and 5th installments) but I really like the third one for a few reasons and I’ll get into them here. As usual, this will not be a spoiler free review.
First and foremost, I do like the concept of the overall franchise and for what it was, the first movie was good even if there was a fucking character named Clear and she was played by an actress that I fucking hate. I’m not here to claim that I think the idea is stupid…well okay it KINDA is but I still like it. I think my interest in the third has to do with the fact that I really like the actors who are the main characters. I also think that out of all of them this one is the most well acted. It’s the one where I am not painfully aware that I am watching a movie because I think the characters are realistic to how high school characters actually behave.
If you aren’t familiar with the franchise or the story/concept basically it’s always about people who cheat death. In some way. Like, in the first one they are on an airplane and one of the characters has a vision and he’s able to predict the plane will crash. Except they have now interrupted death’s design and are going to die in the order they would have in the crash if they can’t get death to skip them again. The second one is about a massive car accident on the highway. The third one is about kids dying on a roller coaster. I like coasters, a lot, but for some reason this idea is more chilling to me than a car pile up or a plane crash.
So the main character is Wendy and she is played by Mary Elizabeth Winstead. Then there is Kevin and he’s played by Ryan Merriman, who I like for some reason. I like him a lot. I have no clue as to why. Maybe it was his small role in Ring 2 and then his starring role in the video short just called RINGS. No idea. I don’t know him from anything other than these things. They all go to an amusement park for some senior class party/trip thing. Wendy has the vision that her and a bunch of other people will die because the coaster is going to have some issues. Of course she is right but her boyfriend never gets off the ride and he dies. Her and Kevin aren’t really “Friends”. They only hang out with each other because Wendy is friends with Kevin’s girlfriend and Kevin was friends with her boyfriend.
Neither the boyfriend or girlfriend get off of the coaster. This leaves Wendy and Kevin to survive and have to work together to figure out death’s design. They go around everywhere trying to convince people that they are totally about to die but always end up getting there about 5 minutes before the next person dies and they die anyway. That is until they get to a guy named Ian and manage to save him. They don’t manage to save his girlfriend though. Death skips over him but since him and his girlfriend were like goth/emo scene kid soulmates he’s all busted up that she died. To be honest, she died in a really shitty way (nail gun to the back of the head). He now thinks that he can’t die because next death will be coming after Kevin then Wendy. But there is someone else there. Turns out that it’s one of her sister’s friends because they some how got into senior party night even though they weren’t supposed to be there.
Kevin has to work at some bicentennial thing where there are a lot of fireworks, which leads to a hilarious line of “Fuck you Ben Franklin” which always cracks me up despite the fact that no one will get this at all unless they’ve seen the movie. Ian goes to the bicentennial thing to try to exacerbate the whole situation cause he pretty much wants Wendy and Kevin dead, thinking they caused his girlfriend to die. Except for the fact that him trying to get them to die actually makes death skip them and he dies. Thinking it is over time moves on and Wendy goes to college in New York or something. The whole movie ends with another vision. This one is of a subway crash. It’s well handled because at first you just think all of it’s happening but then they flashback to show Wendy has only just had the vision. Things go black, there is screeching of tracks and the end is the end.
I don’t know what it really is about this one that keeps me coming back. One of my favorite actresses is in the fourth installment and I STILL don’t like it as much as this one. I like her scenes but she dies pretty quickly so there’s not much other reason to watch it. This one has some great moments and some very inventive deaths. Yes, all of the movies have inventive deaths but I really like this one. The two girls burning to death in the tanning beds, the guy getting his head crushed open by the engine of a truck, the nail gun (as mentioned), a jock getting his head crushed by weights. I also think the effects were really well done (even if obvious CGI is obvious in a lot of places). This is the one fucking installment where the actors can actually act (and you really believe they are young enough to be in high school) and that’s why it works better than the others. Can you watch this one without watching the first two? Hell yeah, because all of them are basically the same movie anyway. Plus, each movie will bring up and explain the first movie so you really aren’t missing anything by skipping. The first two aren’t complete train wrecks to watch they just aren’t nearly as fun. Start with this one, only watch this one, but whatever. I will recommend Final Destination 3 before any of the other 4 movies. That’s for sure.