Why such an incredibly aggressive TV campaign for Final Destination 5?

I don’t remember any horror movie flogged to the moon like this. Not The Silence of the Lambs, not Freddy vs. Jason, not I Know What You Did Last Summer. Certainly not the previous installments in this apparently now white-hot franchise.

The premise is fairly intriguing: You must not make a positive difference in people’s lives, because you will then be forced to undo all the good you did (which actually would explain a lot). But is it really worth flooding my TV with ads…I saw one on the Discovery Channel, for crying out loud.

It wouldn’t bother me quite as much if there wasn’t so much screaming. Can’t you show more of that gymnast or something?

P.S. The folks I live with leave the TV on all through dinner for America’s Got Talent/So You Think You Can Dance Season. I wish I could just switch over to C-SPAN.

I have a theory that goes as such:

-The more a movie is hyped with aggressive tactics like this one, the more the movie is going to suck the sweat off of dead man’s balls.

That’s it in a nutshell. If the execs think that a movie is not good enough to survive the opening round of reviews, they ramp up the advertising to maximize the opening week crowd. They know that it will get a thumbs down from the first folks who see it. So they make sure to squeeze in all the people they can before that word of mouth gets around. After a few weeks, off to video land!

I’m not so sure that’s true in a case like this. Sure, they know they’ll get bad reviews, but it’s not like this is some unknown quantity. It’s the fifth in a series and, from what I’ve seen, they’re all pretty much the same movie with different insane circumstances causing the deaths. If you liked the second one, you’ll probably like the third, fourth, etc, and I think their fans know that. They have a built-in audience for a movie like this, so in that way, they’re review-proof. I can see how that review strategy can work with new movies (and have seen it work with many) but for a franchise film that seems a little beside the point. The only thing that would really hurt this movie would be changing the formula and the commercials do little to make me think they’re trying to do that.

Still, the conventional wisdom is that if a movie can’t sell itself by it’s quality, advertising is used to hard sell it.

Weird. Even during the summer I still watch several shows as they air, and I’ve only seen one commerical for this movie so far.

I actually seem to remember a much more aggressive campaign for the last one (with the NASCAR scene and the girl dying in the car wash :p). I guess it depends on what shows you’re watching and how much, because although I’ve seen the commercials, it hasn’t seemed that over-saturated to me.

Bad reviews or not, though, I think this is the type of film that opens big and drops off quickly, so they’re just going for the biggest opening weekend they can by making sure it’s on absolutely everybody’s radar when the “what movie should we see” question comes up. Nothing too mysterious there.

Agreed. Final Destination 4 was pushed much harder than Part 5 in my opinion.

Of course, both of them got trumped by Crazy Stupid Love. I was subjected to so many trailers for that movie that Emma Stone’s voice (“You’re Photoshopped!”) is constantly rattling around in my head.

Why don’t machines in the Final Destination universe ever seize up or short out? Whenever something goes wrong, they immediately race out of control or go to quadruple power or otherwise redline until somebody dies. Does OSHA not exist, or something?

I don’t know if you’re serious or not, but they’re…

…quite literally controlled by the hand of the Grim Reaper.

What got me about the advertising is that they’ve already shown the whole movie. I must have seen nearly a dozen different deaths (though I’m sure some will be near misses). The only reason to watch would be to find out with girl ends up living (but I don’t care) or what’s behind it (which Justin helpfully provided). Personally, I can’t sit through these movies even on cable.

I’ve never grasped the premise of these movies. What’s the lesson- never go inside the house when there’s a thunderstorm, because it’s your destiny to get struck by lightning, and Death will be mad at you? Never buy a car with an airbag, because it’s your destiny to die in a freeway accident, and Death will be pissed off? Never get a vaccine, because it’s your destiny to die of a terrible disease, and Death will be peeved?

Well, half-serious. I can readily mock the goofy accidents that come about through a bizarre chain of events and simple machines going off at weird times and with seemingly contrived coordination, but when water spills onto a electrical box, I’d expect the fuses or breakers to fulfill their basic function and cut the power, rather than having two plugged-in tanning beds go immediately to “broil”. The ads for the new movie suggest a eyesight-correcting laser goes haywire (funny, when I had the procedure done, I wasn’t strapped down or anything), all the various safeguards having bizarrely failed.

If anything, I’d expect scenes like this to get people to distrust complex machines of all kinds. Are you sure you want to use cruise control? Are you sure it’s not going to rev your car to 140mph and careening off a cliff… no, wait, that’s too prosaic… rev your car to 140mph and smashing through the doors of a bottle factory where foot-long and razor-sharp shards of glass will cascade all around you, making painful cuts in your skin while you scream in terror and finally fall from your wrecked car onto a conveyor belt headed for the furnace, unable to move because all your tendons have been cut… Some worker might have the presence of mind to hit the emergency stop button (which performs as designed, surprisingly), but that’s no respite since the demolished car will also tumble onto the conveyor in pieces and the steering wheel will land near your head, perfectly placed for the belated inflation of the airbag to hammer-slam two brand-new Coke bottles through your eyes and out the back of your head. Oh, if only you’d recognized the future irony when earlier in the film you joked about that nerd’s “Coke bottle glasses” but now it’s too late.

I see the ads as I speed past them watching SYTYCD off the DVR, but it doesn’t seem any more or less than any other over-advertized schlock movie.

This video does a better job than the TV ads anyway.

I did see the original. And while I thought it had an interesting premise, they too eagerly opted for the “hey, let’s kill people in creative ways” route, and even then the execution (no pun intended) was kind of lame.

I can’t say I had any desire to see the sequels, but I do have a question, and feel free to put the answer in a spoiler box if you want - Do any of the characters in the sequels figure out how to cheat death, and if so, how?

Each movie…

[spoiler]…opens with a new character having a premonition about the giant accident. This character then saves a variety of people and they are stalked by Death throughout the rest of the movie. Usually, one or two survive.

But in the next movie there’s a small background detail that shows those characters that survive the previous movie have since died mysteriously. In FD2, the surviving cast member of FD1 is killed on screen.[/spoiler]

I’ve never gone to see one in a movie theater, and will not go see this one in the theater either. However, I have watched them all on the cable channels when they come out.
Of course they are over-the-top, ridiculous and predictable. I like them because they are a Rube Goldberg killing machine of sorts. Sometimes you get to see the set up - hmm…a hair dryer, a long electrical cord, a swimming pool, a banana peel by the pool - what could possibly go wrong there?! Other times the scene comes out of the blue; the character might be sitting peacefully in a park, not knowing that a grand piano is being airlifted over the park for a concert and, oops…

I would never recommend that someone go see any of the Final Destination films, but I find them silly fun, and can imagine the writers are having a blast coming up with even more bizarre ways to envision Jackass Gone Really Bad death clips. Consider these films outtakes from every horror/disaster film.

The adds are also meant to drown out all competing adds - make you think that there is one - and only one - movie opening that particular weekend.

So that you have only one Destination -

There is no lesson, it’s just one big, stupid shaggy dog story.

Okay, it’s a shaggy dog story. I just figure that, if Death gets mad when people live who were “supposed to die,” why isn’t Death constantly punishing doctors and paramedics and firemen? Aren’t THEY screwing up his plans, too?