It was a whim. Still in recovery from last week's medical thing (that landed me in the hospital and will be written about once the neurologist has a diagnosis), there was a recognition that going to meet "the guys" at Truck Stop or the Eagle Beer Blast or Metropolitan's Sunday barbecue was maybe a bad idea. Escape was needed though as cabin fever was achingly abundant. I walked myself to the subway station entrance and sat on a bench debating going for "just a couple of beers". Then came the call from a best friend in Atlanta on business that brought the scold of "having no business carousing in your condition".
The subway station is two blocks from the multiplexorama, so a quick check to the Flixster iPhone app brought the antidote to my situation: The Final Destination, 3-D.
The ($15.00!!!) ticket was purchased with a medium Coke Zero and peanut M&M's. (How can you they be out of Twizzlers? How is that even possible? Also? Were it not a whim, outside purchases would have been made.) A near perfect seat was chosen. Then the horror began.
First the Father arrived, securing three other seats. Then came the Mother. And the four-year-old Son (two seats from me). And the tween Daughter (next to me). A quick glance confirmed that any available remaining seats were inferior. "Tough it out" demanded the inner bad-ass. Then the lights went down and the surprises began.
A couple trying to find seats and loudly discussing their quest were shushed by the Son. The only other speaking from the kids came as the candy/flower-scented Daughter told the parents that she "absolutely must see Sorority Row." Still the trepidation crept over me, expecting the worst as the movie started.
Wheels and blood and rocks and flames came flying from the screen, forcing my best ducking maneuvers. The gore factor or the death of "tampon-mom" was too much requiring the shielding of my eyes. Finally, in one of the bloodiest splatters, my eyes catch the Son reaching out for intestinal bits and bloody globs as they floated in the three-dimensional ether before him.
An hour and a half later, when the Final Destination fulfilled its inevitable course of action, my rush to the bathroom (with a quick stop to throw the glasses in the recycling bin) landed me at the closest adult-size urinal. Soon next to me were Father and Son, discussing the death and the gore and what was "neat" and what "looked fake".
The movie was what it was expected to be and that, simply, was sort of awesome. The acting is mediocre, the script simple, and the plot predictable. Despite all of that, the effects are perfectly married for the Final Destination meme, repeated throughout every iteration of the title. As for bringing the kids? I thought back to my parents and how they made the sacrifice of missing out on a ton of movies while I was a kid. My guess is that the newer generation of parents is more self-indulgent and generally selfish. Would I want a four-year-old seeing bare tits bouncing as a nubile nymph rides a tanned, toned soon-to-be-corpse? No. Nor would I want him reaching out toward the screen with his sister to try to touch bone fragments strewn out in front of them.
Honestly though? The ability of the kids to suspend reality and interact with the technology was contagious and brought me more into the film. In fact, their presence probably increased my enjoyment a hundred-fold. Conclusion? To thoroughly enjoy the thrill-ride that FD 3-D is, bring the kids, just not your own.