Everyone knows that old horror trope of The Monkey’s Paw. Be careful what you wish for because it might change your life for the worst. And of course in the horror genre, it always does. The latest tale to take on this trope is The Final Wish. A genre piece co-written by the co-creator of the Final Destination franchise, Jeffrey Reddick; and starring horror film favorite Lin Shay (Insidious: The Last Key) and featuring Tony Todd (Candyman). While such a pedigree would undoubtedly catch the eye of any hardcore horrorphile, narratively this film is very standard fare.
The Final Wish tells the story of Aaron Hammond (Michael Welch), a young aspiring law partner who returns home to his small town following his father’s death. As expected, his mother, Kate Hammond (Lin Shay), is grief-stricken. In an effort to lift his mother’s spirits, Michael decides to “declutter” the house and have a yard sale. While doing so, Aaron finds a strange ancient artifact among his dad’s belongings. Soon after Aaron finds this antique, his mother becomes manic; and strange things begin to happen.
Considering the picture’s plot, one would think a perfectly serviceable horror movie could be made from it. Unfortunately, though, The Final Wish proves to be nothing more than an uninspired slog. Honestly, I almost needed coffee to make it through this thing! Of course, it doesn’t help that this movie has no style of its own. All the decent deaths come from writers William Halfon, Jonathan Doyle, and Jeffrey Reddick ripping-off a method of death-dealing that Reddick himself helped establish with Final Destination (2000). Furthermore, director Timothy Woodward Jr (Silencer) and his cinematographer Pablo Diaz offer nothing original from a visual standpoint. To the contrary, they vie to imitate the look of the Insidious quadrilogy.
Watching The Final Wish, it’s clear that the director is sleepwalking through it. While the cast may be trying their damnedest, that effort doesn’t show up on screen. Nearly the entire cast is terrible as none of their performances feel naturalistic. Sadly, most of the acting in the movie is on-par with lousy community theater. That is, except for Shay, who does a decent job when she does not have to play Kate manically. Still, Shay and her genre cred aren’t enough to make The Final Wish worth watching. If you do, you’ll only wish you had that 95 minutes of your life back.
The Final Wish is Now Available on Blu-Ray, Digital, & DVD!