The fourth movie in the series is not numbered, instead being called The Final Destination, implying that it's the last movie in the series...and then Final Destination 5 comes out. The brilliance only comes at the end of Final Destination 5, when the last two survivors of the bridge collapse die by being on board Flight 180—the opening disaster from Final Destination. It's a prequel, which means the fourth movie is still chronologically the last.
In Final Destination 5, cell-phone addict Isaac carries around an older, clunky model. This troper remembers thinking it was strange, until we realize the movie is a prequel and that's the kind of cellphones they had back then.
This troper went in knowing it was a prequel, but found the subtle musical hattips in the opening scene pretty great. When the hell else but 2000 would someone have compared a girl to Lisa Loeb?
Someone from 2011 could have been a fan of Lisa Loeb when he was younger, and remained a fan of her due to nostalgia.
Another subtle hint: "I see dead people". The Sixth Sense had come out in theaters barely a year prior to the events of the fifth Final Destination movie. Nowadays, that joke has been done to death.
It's also smart how they hide it on at least one occasion. Before September 2001, while a possible cause for tragedy, terrorism could not have been the go-to explanation for police forces to try to comprehend such events. Similarly, it's the only movie not to make any reference to Flight 180 when people investigate the situation.
An example that fits both Fridge Brilliance and Horror, at the end of Final Destination 5. Peter kills Agent Block, Sam kills Peter, then he and Molly die in the plane's explosion. This technically means that Sam got Peter's years; yet, Peter had taken his years from the policeman. Which means that the policeman had only two weeks to live. Peter killing him was proven nearly useless, since he only gained two weeks. But he didn't know. And neither did Sam...
Jonathan Grove dies in the fourth movie's vision because he's crushed against a concrete pylon by a flying wreck. He'd been asked to move to a new seat because his cowboy hat was blocking peoples' view. It was no coincidence that this placed him in such a dangerous spot: he'd chosen that spot to sit because the pylon was there, meaning no one was seated directly behind him and his hat couldn't obstruct anyone else's view. Death by politeness!
I just figured out one weird detail in the opening disaster of FD2. In the premonition, the last girl due to go squish finds herself pinned by the wreckage of her car as she sees the grille of a big rig come barreling out of a wall of fire at her. At first I thought, okay, somehow this thing either jackknifed, or it's riding the force of all the other cars exploding behind it, or maybe both, but this isn't the case. That was the same truck that took out the van with all her friends after saving a bunch of the would-be victims. It wasn't exactly caught up in the explosions or jackknifed or anything - it just couldn't stop in time.
It would make sense that the deaths in Final Destination 5 were toned down a bit. The movie takes place before any of the other Final Destination movies, when Sequel Escalation caused the deaths to go Up to Eleven.
It's mentioned in Death's entry on the character page that he seems to have an odd intolerance for racism. One of the most prominent fan theories claims that Bludworth is Death himself...
Another popular theory is that he went through the same perils, but survived. How else could he know that you get a person's remaining years by killing them? This also explains why he also acts as sort of a guide to the survivors...
In the alternate beginning to Final Destination 3 Wendy has her premonition of the roller-coaster crash while still in line and ends up saving Kevin, Jason and Carrie instead of the original survivors. We are then shown text describing how each of their lives continued following the crash, indicating that Death is no longer chasing them. This is explained by the "kill or be killed" rule introduced in Final Destination 5- since 4 new people took their seats on the ride, Wendy and the others inadvertently caused their deaths and got their lives.
In Final Destination 3 the photos taken by Wendy before boarding Devil's Flight predict the nature of the deaths of all the survivors. This doesn't make sense if the premonitions aren't part of Death's design, as it would have no way of knowing that 10 people would get off the ride. The revelation in The Final Destination that Death is actually the one sending the premonitions in order to lead people to their intended deaths clears this up.
The photos of Julie, Kevin and Wendy, in addition to containing clues about their intervened deaths, also contains clues about their eventual deaths on the subway. Julie's photo has an oval-shaped light fixture next to her head that resembles the flying wheel that kills her, the overexposure in Kevin's photo resembles the flashing subway tunnel lights, and the blurred out face of Jason in Wendy's photo resembles the faces of passengers on the subway platform, as well as her McKinley grad shirt foreshadowing her being hit by a train bound for McKinley.
Throughout the 4 movies chronologically following Final Destination 5, no one references the North Bay Bridge collapse or Sam's premonition despite continually mentioning Flight 180 and all the other disasters. On a meta level, this is obviously because Final Destination 5 was made last. But this is also justified by the fact that there was nothing setting apart the people saved by Sam's premonitions from the rest of the bridge collapse survivors. Everyone who directly witnessed Sam's premonition died either on the bridge or in the ensuing accidents. Thus, to the outside world, they were just 8 people out of dozens who escaped. Also, the Flight 180 crash itself would have played a large role in overshadowing the bridge collapse in the media, happening a mere 3 weeks later.
Plus, foreseeing the collapse of a bridge under construction seems quite less impressive than foreseeing a plane crash.
And with a bridge collapse, there's likely to be more tangible evidence as to the cause than when an aircraft explodes in midair. Yes, it's mostly on the bottom of the river, but at least the remains of the failed structure still exist and can be assessed. So the plane crash received more media attention, because it's a mystery as well as a tragedy.
In Final Destinations 1 and 5, cops and detectives play major roles, each time questioning the role of the person who had the premonition and saved many from certain death, moments before it happens. In the second and fourth films, a cop or security guard is directly involved in the events, being a part of Death's List. However, starting withFD2 the cops involve themselves less into the major catastrophes opening each film. A logical reason would be that a car pileup, a roller coaster spinning out of control and a massive accident at a race car tournament can hardly be attributed to terrorism or the act of a single person, unlike a plane exploding or a suspended bridge collapsing, hence why they don't pay attention to the person with the premonition.
The whole Red Herring of Rube Goldberg Hates Your Guts moments, where a convoluted series of events happen but usually the simplest one is what takes you out lend credence to the theory that, while Death has a list, it doesn't control everything! Death just has a grudge list for whoever survives their initial deaths, but it cannot control the actions of people, so it starts up multiple ways for the character to get killed and hopes they pretty much walk into it. Take 2 for example, it starts a house fire/explosion, and if it wasn't for luck and quick thinking, the guy would have died there and then, but when that fails, it makes him slip and get impaled. Another one nearly gets suffocated on laughing gas but yet again, luck happens, and he instead gets crushed by a simple glass plate. Death constantly tries to set up these elaborate, awesome sadistic deaths (be honest; if you had a choice, would you rather die in a huge explosion or by slipping on some pasta?) for these people, but people don't react how it would like, so Death then throws a fit and just goes "screw this" and kills them in an simple way. Basically, it's not Death, Ender of All, it's just a sadistic childish force.
Who knows? Maybe HE lived such a thing and managed to get out of it... it would also explain how he knows about the trick of "killing someone to gain their years." But unlike Sam and Nathan, he may have killed someone who still had a long time to live. His age is never explicitly stated, and he does look in his fifties, maybe he's even older than that. Could he have killed an infant? Cue total horror.
Even more Fridge Horror: if he did kill an infant, maybe his lifespan will be longer than any other human's. If said infant was destined to live a long life, that means Bludworth could live well beyond 100 years.
Which itself goes into Fridge Horror that might also go into Black Comedy that Crosses the Line Twice, depending on your point of view: Death will still come and get Bludworth someday. We see in FD5 that those who manage to cheat Death such as Sam, who got Agent Block's remaining weeks, or Nathan Seers, who got Roy's remaining weeks, will still end up dying in horrifying ways once their time comes. Imagine Bludworth, age 80+, living in a residence for senior citizens, when Death comes to off him in a spectacular fashion, similarly to the final acts of F3, 4 and 5...
Or if you want a seriousMind Screw, maybe Bludworth only told the characters about the kill-to-take-someone's-years rule because he gets a fraction of the years transferred, having personally contributed the motive for any resulting murders. His presence in the films might well be a deliberate strategy to cheat Death himself, by approaching visionaries and their fellow-survivors, then feeling out which ones might be willing to kill others and informing them about the "rule"! He's like a jackal, letting others get their hands bloody while he steals the scraps.
The Final Destination: All those people in the movie theatre and in the mall who would have died if Nick hadn't saved them? They are all on Death's List now.
That point is usually explained by that all being part of death's overarching plan, as in death gave him the visions not whatever other force is supposed to be at work". this is partially explained in the end when they are in death by caffeine and they get killed by the truck".
Samantha's two young sons watched her die. To make it worse, they were the indirect cause of her death. Can you say "therapy for life"?
I believe that it was confirmed that all the people in the movie theatre were ALWAYS going to survive and were never on the list - they were just there to get in Nick's way to make sure the others kicked the bucket; the creators confirmed it, I think.