Final Destination 2 (2003) / Horror-Thriller

MPAA Rated: R for strong, gruesome violence, language, drug content and nudity
Running Time: 90 min.

Cast: A.J. Cook, Michael Landes, Ali Larter, Terrence "T.C." Carson, Keegan Conner Tracy
Director: David R. Ellis
Screenplay: J. Mackye Gruber, Eric Bress
Review published February 2, 2003

More slick trash for the mindless horror-loving set, Final Destination 2 is a film without a reason to exist.  As bad as it was, at least the first film had the nifty new idea going for it, but this one brings nothing new to the table.  Basically, its sole purpose is to concoct elaborate, and mostly gruesome, ways to die.  If all you want out of a film is to see cars exploding for no reason and a bunch of twenty-somethings getting skewered in the most stomach-churning of ways, perhaps Final Destination 2 is your kind of entertainment after all.  Just warn me whenever you've gone to the same theatre as me, so I can make a hasty exit, you sicko.

As ridiculously senseless as the film is, at least it acknowledges the first film by incorporating Ali Larter's (Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, Legally Blonde) character.  This one starts off with Kimberly (Cook, The Virgin Suicides) and a bunch of her friends in an SUV about to enter the freeway, when she is overtaken by a vision of the future which includes their deaths and many of the drivers in the other vehicles around them.  Knowing their fates, she holds obstructs the onramp, saving the lives of all of those behind her.  But you can't cheat death for long, and soon the survivors find themselves being picked off one by one in the weirdest of ways. 

While one can forgive a sequel for being somewhat redundant, where Final Destination 2 offends is through a complete lack of logic, not only in the ridiculous physics employed in almost every scene, but even when it comes to common sense.  Why do cars drive keep driving into areas of the freeway which are full of explosions they must have seen for miles by the time their vehicles arrive?  Hell, why are there so many explosions anyway?  How is it that Kimberly only sees the deaths of the people who are traveling in the onramp behind her, and not of any others already on the road who perish?  Also, with the varying speeds and traffic from entering the freeway, wouldn't those who enter on the same onramp have been very far back, well out of harm's way by the time the events unfolded?  Why does the real accident happen hundreds of feet from the onramp, when in her vision they've all been driving for miles before any calamity occurs?  How is Kimberly able to drive while also having a 15-minute vision she takes to be real to begin with? 

These are only a few of the things I can't understand, and I haven't even told you about what a bigger illogical crock the rest of the film is!  I'll leave it at that, because I can ask questions forever, and I suspect never get a satisfactory answer.

Final Destination 2 is a complete rehash of the first film's formula, with the exception that their deaths are going backwards, and for some reason, there is some gobbledygook about the introduction of new life in order to stop the process. Further explanations could be given, but the more they tried to elaborate the death sequence of events in the film, the more confusing it all became.  Better to watch the first film backwards (or even the first five minutes of every episode of HBO's "Six Feet Under" if you just need a fix for certain deaths) than try to make sense out of a film from the minds of people who have no intelligent ideas to begin with.

-- Followed by Final Destination 3.

Qwipster's rating:

2003 Vince Leo