Director: Niels Arden Oplev
Writers: Peter Filardi (story by), Ben Ripley (screenplay by)
Stars: Ellen Page, Diego Luna, Nina Dobrev
Plot: Five medical students, obsessed by what lies beyond the confines of life, embark on a daring experiment: by stopping their hearts for short periods, each triggers a near-death experience – giving them a firsthand account of the afterlife.
Running Time: 1 Hour 49 Minutes
Rotten Tomatoes Score: Critics 5% Audience 34%
Why I Watched It: Not going to lie I heard all the bad reviews but iTunes had it on for .99 cents so I gave it a try and yes I saw the original.
Random Thoughts: Couple of things to get out of the way that 5% for critics oddly only 66 critics posted a review, that’s telling too as this was a major release and many critics didn’t even bother to see it. Kiefer Sutherland is in both films but he’s playing different characters. I have no idea why they got him for the remake as it doesn’t make sense cause it’s distracting.
What I Liked: Alright so there’s not much here to like but lets try. The cast isn’t bad Ellen Page stands out as she is much better than this material, she is the only one to flesh out a character. A lot of that has to be given to Page she overcomes the script to give a good performance. I like Diego Luna and he’s good here but his character is very under written.
What I Didn’t Like: This is a boring and pointless remake and the sad thing is that the original Flatliners is not a classic you could of made a better film but here they don’t even try they pretty much just to the first one they didn’t twist anything and if anything they made the idea worse. The main thing to try and get your head around is that the main idea is fine doctors want to know what happens when you die they stop their heart and the other doctors bring them back, they’re hooked up to machines to see if there’s brain activity and on paper good horror idea but for me a better Sci-Fi, but what they come up with is not only silly but dumb. The script can’t even tell us what and why things are happening, like the first one when they come back they’re haunted by past sins, but they’re haunted in some cases by people that aren’t dead so it’s not there spirits doing it. In this one they make a plot point of when you come back you’re not only more alive but your brain wakes up and you can be better at things, you’re smarter. Doesn’t make sense.
Besides Page and Luna the cast is bland, not the actors fault cause I’ve seen all them in better movies but they get the one character trait each. Bottom line you don’t care about these characters for two reasons the stakes aren’t high enough and you don’t get a sense of them. The film has so many problems it’s hard to list them all but they kill off a character about mid way through and it hurt the film a lot also the film is way too long, we get so much padding in this film that it kills the tension and momentum of the story. A horror film can’t be too long cause once you check out there’s no going back.
Final Thoughts: Boring and not well written kind of sums it up, again they had a chance of doing something different and they didn’t they just cut and pasted from the first film.