Final Destination 2000 Movie Scene Devon Sawa as Alex and Ali Larter as Clear Rivers in the morgue looking at the dead body of their friend Chad Donella as Tod

Final Destination [2000]

I remember it like it was yesterday. It was the year of our lord Cthulhu 2000 and I sat down to watch this movie with some high school friends. What happened next was a mixture of excitement, fear, and pure joy as I knew I was watching something special. For the first time, I felt like I was watching a modern horror movie. I don’t know if it was the atmosphere or all the hype surrounding the start of the new century. But something made this experience special. Final Destination is an exquisitely crafted, sleek, and highly entertaining horror movie. It puts a twist on the tired old slasher formula replacing the physical killer with mysterious and unseen forces.

Add to this extremely creative kills that would go on to become the trademark of the franchise and you’ve got yourself a hit. The movie follows a group of teens who narrowly escape certain deaths only to start dying one by one in freak accidents. The concept of death coming to claim its victims was supposed to be used in The X-Files episode. However, James Wong developed it into this movie. Final Destination is a perfectly balanced movie. There’s just the right amount of action, gore, and thrills. The story is predictable but not to the point where you can guess everything that’s going to happen. Moreover, the bizarre nature of the kills will make you forget all about the main story.

I think this is the most potent element of the movie. Freak accidents are something all of us secretly and not so secretly fear. We all had that nasty feeling in our stomachs while the airplane engines were trying to beat gravity during takeoff. As soon as you start overthinking it, you will find yourself in an infinite panic loop. On the other hand, if you’re too busy thinking about all the boning you’re going to be doing in Paris, you’ll be perfectly fine. Final Destination uses our innate fears and rational thinking to generate catastrophic and yet entirely possible tragedies. Each and every one of them makes for a perfect conversation starter. If the other person has also seen the movie, of course.

You might be wondering how this movie feels after nearly a quarter of a century. Well, it’s just as effective as it was back in 2000. Sure, it might get a bit cheesy from time to time. However, I think that gives it a charming nostalgic vibe, especially if you saw it back then. The special effects still look excellent although the lack of graphic content was a bit of a surprise. As each of the new installments in the franchise was trying to up the ante, the kills were becoming more and more brutal. Currently, there are four sequels with the fifth one, Final Destination: Bloodlines currently in development. It would appear that the story will revolve around first responders, people who deal with death on a daily basis.

Final Destination is definitely a movie worth watching. The atmosphere is suspenseful, the pacing fast and the running time short. There will be also a couple of unexpected twists in the story. However, its main attraction is in the very concept of premonition and how it relates to our everyday lives. Once you see this movie, it will give a new dimension to ordinary actions you go through on a daily basis. You just got out of the shower, perhaps you’ll slip, fall, and hit the back of your head on the wet floor. The next time you’re looking out of the window, you’ll be thinking what if I lose my balance and fall off? Your mind will be playing tricks on you, especially if you’re young.

Upon further inspection, the story features quite a few loose ends. We’ll never know why Alex, played masterfully by Devon Sawa, had these visions in the first place. And the rest of the world will do almost nothing to help our poor teen group. They will be left in this surreal vacuum, fully knowing that death is coming to get them. Apart from Sawa, whom you might remember from the nineties classic Idle Hands, I also must mention Ali Larter. She was great as Clear Rivers and I did have a crush on her back then. We also have a veritable horror legend Tony Todd playing the role of the mortician. Since there are exactly five Final Destination movies, and all of them are quite good, the series makes for perfect binge-watching material.

Finally, I simply must tell you all about certain events that make this movie even more exciting than it already is. Final Destination 2000 draws a lot of inspiration from the real-world crash of the TWA Flight 800. The movie uses news coverage of that horrific accident, the third-deadliest aviation accident in U.S. history. Among the 230 dead passengers was a group of 16 high schoolers from Pennsylvania who were going to Paris. Just like in the movie, the flight took off from the John F. Kennedy International Airport. During the first few weeks of the investigation into what exactly caused the crash, there was a lot of confusion. 

The investigators first thought that this was a terrorist attack after suspecting a surface-to-air missile. Eventually, the whole process ended just as the movie was released, in 2000. The final cause of the accident was the explosion of flammable fuel vapors in the center fuel tank. What set off the explosion was most likely a random short circuit.

Director: James Wong

Writers: Glen Morgan, James Wong, Jeffrey Reddick

Cast: Devon Sawa, Ali Larter, Seann William Scott, Chad Donella, Kerr Smith, Kristen Cloke, Tony Todd

Fun Facts: A lot of the songs you can hear in the movie are by John Denver, a musician who died in a plane crash several years earlier.


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