Death Takes No Holidays: Another Sequel, More Carnage

Tears for fears: Winstead
photo: Shane Harvey/New Line Production
Tears for fears: Winstead

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Final Destination 3
Directed by James Wong
New Line, opens February 10

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Form mimics narrative in this rote sequel that surely no one was waiting for: Like the serially thwarted Death (the only "character" to return from the first two Final Destination movies), audiences are required to endure banal exposition and junior-high-level foreshadowing before being treated to the nauseatingly detailed scenes of CGI slaughter that are the series' bread and butter. No wonder the grim reaper is so pissed off in these things. Like its predecessors, this latest examination of the perils of Thanatos interruptus features a gaggle of uni-dimensional teens—led here by Wendy (Mary Elizabeth Winstead)—who cheat death and pay the price via a variety of inventive means. The notion of butchery as a spectator event notwithstanding, there's an almost admirably workmanlike quality to the way co- scenarists Glen Morgan and James Wong set up their characters for carnage like so many fleshy bowling pins; that viewers will forget the various squashings, decapitations, nail gunnings, and gorings before the credits even roll is beside the point. Hell, these guys could have a future in network news, if not politics.

 
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