FILM REVIEW: Flatliners (2017)
[THIS FILM REVIEW CONTAINS SPOILERS]
I sat down to watch this movie as someone who also watched the 1990 version of Flatliners .
I was glad to see Ellen Page headlining the movie and Kiefer Sutherland also making a cameo too, with the promise of this not being a ‘remake’ but a sequel to the previous movie.
The first third of the move initially gives you a glimpse into the plot and what lies ahead, giving it a ‘thriller’ feel that I personally like but also made me wonder what was next around the corner.
Then, it takes you into the life of Courtney Holmes (played by Page), a medical student who takes an interest in the afterlife and getting scientific proof of it through ‘flatlining’ (stopping their hearts and then being resuscitated to life) and persuades other medical students to join the experiment with her.
Other than Page, the only other actor I knew by name was Diego Luna, who plays Ray, the only senior doctor and the only person who doesn’t choose to flatline.
The second third of the movie starts to explore more of the reasons behind each student’s visions while flatlining. Marlo (Nina Dobrev) is feeling remorse over killing a patient by accident, Jamie (James Norton) over getting a former girlfriend pregnant and walking away from his responsibility, and Sophia (Kiersey Clemons) from spreading sensitive texts and messages publicly of a class colleague. Courtney’s visions are the most personal as they are of her sister who died in a car accident while she was texting while driving.
The final third starts to become predictable and their visions begin to haunt them with varying results. One actually takes my favourite actor in the movie away and I felt it lose momentum soon after, relying more on horror jump scares rather than actual plot to drive it.
When it all wrapped up, I felt disappointed. I felt like they could’ve done so much more. Including Kiefer Sutherland and the character revealing himself (as Nelson Wright) would’ve widened the story a lot and made it truly a sequel rather than a ‘reimagining’ of the 1990 movie (I found out later that the scene didn’t make the final cut).
I would recommend watching the original 1990s movie due to a brilliant cast (Sutherland joined by Julia Roberts, Kevin Bacon and William Baldwin) even in their time. It’s easier to find on Amazon at half of the price of a cinema ticket.