Anyone who has been alive for the last 15 years has at least heard of the ‘Final Destination’ franchise.
If you have been living under a rock for those last 15 years, all the ‘Final Destination’ movies feature the same plot: some poor soul has a premonition of a deadly incident, and after having a serious panic attack, manages to save a few other souls distracted by the panic attack when the said incident actually does occur. For the rest of the movie, the survivors are killed off one by one by “Death” in the order they would have died in the accident, all while scrambling to find a loophole in “Death’s” plan.
Currently running at a total of five movies, the franchise is most known for it’s gruesome and creative death sequences, the memory of which sticks around long after the movie is over. The death sequences even create what I like to call “Final Destination Moments”, where in real life, you get an eerie feeling something bad is about to happen (like when you have to fetch that ring that fell down the drain).
Each movie features a handful of these sequences, but the following is a list of the top 10 death sequences featured in a ‘Final Destination’ movie. The list is in order, included for it’s creativity, real-life chance of happening, gore, and addition to the general plot line.
#10 The death of Valerie Lewton-‘Final Destination’
One thing the ‘Final Destination’ movies do well, is overdo it. “Death” doesn’t seem to have a limit, or a stop button. Why stop at one cause of death, when “Death” can be ultra sure the victim won’t walk away?
Admittedly entertaining, teacher Valerie Lewton is stabbed in the throat with shards of a computer screen, stabbed in the abdomen with a kitchen knife (which is punched in by a chair), and then her house blows up. Even Devon Sawa can’t stop “Death” once it starts going.
The John Denver song playing in the movie is removed from this clip for copyright reasons, but anyone who’s seen the first movie gets the irony.
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#9 The death of Carter Daniels-‘The Final Destination’ (‘Final Destination 4’)
Another of “Death’s” charming attributes, is it’s sense of humor. Even during the most brutal of deaths, the viewer finds themselves chuckling.
In an attempt to avenge his wife’s death, racist survivor Carter Daniels tries to scare the black security guard that separated the two when the deadly race track accident occurred. During the attempt, his tow truck starts without him in it. While trying to stop the truck, he is caught on the tow truck hook, dragged down the street, catches on fire by oil, and blown to pieces, all while the truck blasts “Why Can’t We Be Friends?”. Indeed, why can’t we?
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#8 The (sort of) death of Lori Milligan-‘The Final Destination’ (‘Final Destination 4’)
The ‘Final Destination’ movies have a great way of playing with your anticipations and expectations. Sometimes, you think you know how someone is going to die, and it happens in another way. Or, they have a second premonition, like they do in ‘The Final Destination’.
In this premonition, the main character Nick sees how his girlfriend Lori bites the dust, and it’s not pretty. During an explosion in a movie theater, the escalators running to the top floor break down, and Lori’s legs become trapped in the machinery. I think we have all feared this once or twice, when our shoe laces gets trapped in those sneaky stairs.
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#7 The death of Sam Lawton and Molly Harper-‘Final Destination 5’
It’s pretty rare that someone gets out of the plot alive. Usually, if anything, the movie just ends, and some characters seem to survive, but the audience isn’t really left with finality.
This isn’t the case in ‘Final Destination 5’. Lovers Sam and Molly are on their way to France at the end of the movie, thinking they have missed the long reaching grasp of “Death”. What they find, to the audience’s pleasant surprise, is that they are on an airplane going down, the flight from the original ‘Final Destination’ to be exact. The franchise takes us full circle in the fifth installment, killing off Sam and Molly by sucking them out of the plane, and setting them on fire. The audience knows before they do, and there’s even a “bonus death” when Nathan technically dies from flying pieces of the plane.
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#6 The car pile up-‘Final Destination 2’
What fans most remember is the initial opening death sequences. This is where a major accident occurs, and we see how all the cast members would have died, had they not followed that crazy person talking of car crashes.
In ‘Final Destination 2’, the initial scene is a car pile up caused by a truck who suddenly loses it’s load. Audience members everywhere suddenly avoid all trucks holding logs.
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#5 The death of Ashley Freund and Ashlyn Halperin-‘Final Destination 3’
In my humble opinion, ‘Final Destination 3’ had the best death sequences. They were the most creative, and the incidents that appear to be most likely to happen in real life.
In the third installment, you meet “The Ashleys”. We all knew girls like them in high school; kind of dumb, and definitely shallow. It’s fitting that they die in a shallow manner. While tanning, Ashley and Ashlyn become trapped in the beds, which have become a human-sized oven. They quickly bake to death, while the glass around them breaks. Let’s say it took a few years before I stepped foot into one of those death traps again.
Notice the song in this scene as well…
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#4 The death of Hunter Wynorski-‘The Final Destination’
The deaths in the franchise don’t hold back on the gore. If you’re not cringing at the sequences, you’re probably not right in the head.
‘The Final Destination’ stars frosted-tipped Nick Zano playing the typical alpha male douche, Hunter Wynorski. While relaxing by the pool, Hunter loses his lucky coin at the bottom of the pool. He also loses a few other, er, parts.
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#3 The death of Candice Hooper-‘Final Destination 5’
Even the most creative of horror fans are amazed at how intricate the death scenes can be. It can take multiple things to go very, very wrong for a death to occur.
No scene portrays this better than the death of Candice Hooper. While at practice for a gymnastics team, several things go terribly wrong, and Candice loses her grasp on the uneven bars.
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#2 The roller coaster scene-‘Final Destination 3’
Again, ‘Final Destination 3’ was my favorite. It seemed to draw from my exact fears, and used all of our generic fears against us.
In the opening sequence in ‘Final Destination 3′, the cast is on a trip to an amusement park, when something goes wrong. Viewers’ greatest fears come true when the roller coaster loses it’s hydraulics, and people are dropped from the track one by one.
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#1 The airplane crash-‘Final Destination’
The number one pick is easy. Playing on every traveler’s worst nightmare, the original ‘Final Destination’s’ opening sequence has the cast members on an international school trip. When Devon Sawa closes his eyes, he sees the plane go down, and everyone aboard die.
This scene starts the franchise on a solid, and very scary, note. Creating a path for the rest of the deaths to follow.
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What fans can agree on, is the lessons you’ll learn from the ‘Final Destination’ movies: pay attention to that creepy song on the radio, stay away from sharp and flammable objects, the jerks always go the most terribly, that creepy undertaker/mortician will only give you bad advice, and you can NEVER, EVER cheat “Death”.