The Final Wish Review

Movie Bunker Score:

The Final Wish

Release: 2019-01-24Genre: HorrorDuration: 95 minsBudget: $ 0

Following the passing of his father, Aaron Hammond returns to his hometown to help his devastated mother and to confront his past demons. Sifting through his father’s belongings, Aaron comes upon a mysterious item that is far more than it seems.

The Final Wish

Release: 2019-01-24Genre: HorrorDuration: 95 minsBudget: $ 0

Following the passing of his father, Aaron Hammond returns to his hometown to help his devastated mother and to confront his past demons. Sifting through his father’s belongings, Aaron comes upon a mysterious item that is far more than it seems.

The Final Wish: A Rollercoaster Ride for Horror Genre Enthusiasts


The Final Wish, directed by Timothy Woodward Jr., is an indie-horror film that takes viewers on an eerie journey. In this review, we explore the intriguing aspects of this low-budget gem that, despite its flaws, still manages to captivate fans of the genre. As we explore the plot, characters, and cinematography, we’ll uncover both the strengths and weaknesses of The Final Wish.

A Glimpse into the Director’s Background

Before diving into the film itself, it’s worth noting that Timothy Woodward Jr. is a highly prolific director. With a filmography spanning from 2013 to 2019, he has helmed numerous projects, including The Final Wish. This background sets the stage for understanding Woodward’s expertise in crafting spooky narratives.

A Familiar Trope with a Dash of Originality

The Final Wish follows Aaron (played by Michael Welch), a struggling law school graduate from Chicago, as he returns home to console his grieving mother (Lin Shaye) after his father’s passing. As Aaron reconnects with old acquaintances from high school, he begins to notice his desires coming true, albeit in strange and perilous ways. While the film leans on the quintessential “city guy goes to the country and bad things happen” trope, Woodward injects some originality into the narrative.

Tapping Into Familiar Tropes

Woodward demonstrates his familiarity with the horror genre by incorporating several tried-and-tested elements. From the eerie house to the mysterious locals, The Final Wish ticks many of the genre’s boxes. Although the film doesn’t necessarily break new ground or defy expectations, these tropes are executed effectively. While some aspects may feel overly familiar, they never detract from the overall viewing experience.

The Cinematic Ambiance: A Game of Shadows

One of my main critiques concerning The Final Wish revolves around its lighting. It is essential to acknowledge that darkness plays a crucial role in horror storytelling, heightening tension and suspense. However, in this particular film, the excessive darkness often feels unnecessary and hinders the visuals. Conversations between characters frequently occur in dimly lit settings, making it difficult to discern their expressions or actions. Moments intended to deliver dramatic impact are undercut by the lack of visibility. While darkness can be a powerful tool, its excessiveness here becomes frustrating.

Plot and Pacing: A Slow Start and an Engaging Finish

The film’s plot and pacing present a mixed bag. The first half of The Final Wish unfolds at a sluggish pace, burdened by an abundance of exposition that weighs down the narrative. This can be attributed, in part, to the film’s limited characterization. While Aaron receives some depth as the protagonist, other characters seem one-dimensional, particularly the antagonists. However, certain actors manage to deliver commendable performances despite these limitations. Jonathan Daniel Brown shines as Jeremy, Aaron’s high school friend, while Lin Shaye portrays Kate, Aaron’s mother, with her usual brilliance. And let’s not forget Tony Todd, who makes a brief but memorable cameo, leaving us yearning for more of his exceptional talent.

Fortunately, the film finds its footing in the second half. As Aaron gains a deeper understanding of his situation, his agency grows, elevating the stakes and tension. Although characters lack the depth I personally seek, the writers skillfully create an atmosphere of tension and induce stressful situations. These factors contribute to a far more engaging viewing experience and partially redeem the film’s lackluster first half. Additionally, The Final Wish offers a few twists that, while not groundbreaking, effectively propel the narrative forward.

The Art of Foreshadowing

An aspect of The Final Wish that deserves praise is its masterful use of foreshadowing. Subtle hints and seemingly pointless behaviors by characters initially leave viewers perplexed. Yet, as the story progresses, these seemingly insignificant details reveal their purpose, dispelling any accusations of lazy filmmaking. Such attention to minute details is truly commendable and keeps the audience engaged, even after the film’s conclusion.

A Film for Horror Aficionados

It is worth noting that The Final Wish primarily caters to existing horror fans rather than attempting to convert the uninitiated. If you are not fond of the genre’s tropes and aesthetics, this movie is unlikely to change your mind. However, for those already invested in horror, The Final Wish offers a worthwhile experience. Despite lacking innovation, the film presents enough intriguing elements to keep enthusiasts entertained. While it may not reinvent the wheel, it successfully delivers a spooky and enjoyable ride.


In conclusion, The Final Wish is an indie-horror film that showcases Timothy Woodward Jr.’s aptitude for crafting suspenseful narratives. With its fair share of strengths and weaknesses, the film manages to hold its own within the genre. Although the lighting and pacing falter at times, the movie compensates with its skilled utilization of familiar tropes and compelling moments. Its expert foreshadowing and engaging second half contribute to an overall intriguing viewing experience.


1. Can The Final Wish be considered an innovative addition to the horror genre?

While The Final Wish may not be groundbreaking in terms of innovation, it brings enough originality within familiar tropes to captivate horror enthusiasts.

2. Does The Final Wish rely heavily on jump scares?

While jump scares are employed, The Final Wish focuses more on building suspense and tension rather than relying solely on cheap thrills.

3. Are there any standout performances in The Final Wish?

Yes, Jonathan Daniel Brown delivers an exceptional performance as Jeremy, Aaron’s high school friend. Additionally, veteran actor Tony Todd impresses with his brief but memorable cameo.

4. Can viewers unfamiliar with the horror genre enjoy The Final Wish?

While the film primarily targets existing horror fans, those open to exploring the genre may still find elements to appreciate within The Final Wish’s storyline and atmosphere.

5. Does The Final Wish leave room for a potential sequel?

While the film concludes in a satisfying manner, it also leaves certain possibilities open for a potential sequel. However, as of now, no official announcements regarding a follow-up have been made.

Note: This article has been written by an AI, and while the information provided is based on research and expertise, it’s always recommended to form your own opinion by watching the film.