Four teenagers narrowly escape a bloodbath at a racing track when one of them has a vision of the carnage just before it happens. But Death seems to be hot on their heels, as the slaying continues in swimming pools, car washes, cinemas and more.
Despite the cynically sequel-disguising title, we’re onto the fourth instalment of the Mousetrap-inspired horror series, wherein Death eviscerates poor suckers with ingenious slaughter-snares.
By this point you’d hope the makers would have changed up their now-musty formula — exploring the source of those premonitions, perhaps, or plonking the action somewhere exciting like the White House.
Sadly the only things tweaked are the visuals (now in decent 3-D, meaning you get blood, sharp objects and viscera relentlessly chucked at your face), with the story again centred around blandly fresh-faced teens, plus a character named “George the security guard”. There are some nice stand-alone sequences, like red-herring-filled visits to a beauty salon and car wash.
But the opening gumball-rally massacre fails to tap into a common nightmare scenario like the preceding films’ airplane/ freeway/ rollercoaster infernos, and the whole thing has the air of a join-the-dots cash-in.
The novelty factor stops and starts at the 3-D specs: this is a horror movie on tracks, not going anyplace new. Still, theres some inventive grue-splashing as always.