Movie: Final Destination 2 (2003)
Director: David R. Ellis
...Who Went On To Make: Cellular and Snakes On A Plane
First Impressions: After getting one hell of a recommendation by Jason -- which included a description of this delightful death scene -- I figured I had to include at least one from this series on my list. I have to say...I was not disappointed. The whole film is really two separate movies; the first is a high-octane short film depicting an implausible mass disaster, complete with foreboding omen and action scenes worthy of an actual non-trashy film. Once that's done, the second film begins -- a strung-together series of elaborate, creative, smirking death scenarios that are more achievements of engineering than terror. Doesn't make them any less fun to watch. Occasionally, the film tries to develop a narrative, an explanation and logical framework for why this is all happening; you almost want to grasp the filmmakers close to you and whisper, "Shh. Shh. No more talking. Just show me how that downed power line is going to end up killing the blonde." Very often, all I'm looking for out of a horror movie is whether it can do the job; that is, whether it can scare me, freak me out, make me laugh or avert my eyes -- elicit some sort of strong, positive reaction from me. The worst thing you can do is bore me. This movie? Doesn't bore me. It does the job.
Notable Edits: Oh my God, only about a million. Some of the coolest death scenes -- that PVC extravaganza linked above; the guy who seemed to get sliced in thirds by projectile barbed wire -- are totally neutered. Come on, SciFi, we're all friends here. Nobody's gonna rat you out to the FCC.
Scary Or Funny? Most definitely funny.
Best Killing? Well, besides those two I just mentioned that I barely got to see? The initial fate-killing -- hot guy in the burning kitchen eventually felled by fire escape ladder -- and the "death in an elevator" (killing you dead while you're going down) were both pretty sweet.
Previously: Near Dark, Halloween, Evil Dead II, Pet Sematary 2, Hellraiser, The Howling, The Frighteners, Urban Legend, Hostel, Children of the Corn