After surviving a car crash that kills her younger sister, medical student Courtney (Ellen Paige) invites three colleagues to help her in a dangerous experiment. Using an abandoned MRI scanner, she asks them to map her brainwaves – but only after they agree to stop her heart and send her into a ‘flatline’.
After initially refusing, they agree to bring her back to life after sixty seconds. However, when she returns with an expanded consciousness and much increased intellect, the others quickly decide they also want to try ‘flatlining’. However in the process of dying and coming back to life, it becomes clear that something else is following them back and if they are to survive it will come at a deadly cost.
'Flatliners' is another curiosity cash-in...
In what seems like a continuing trend of Hollywood resuscitating old eighties movies for millennial audiences, 2017’s ‘Flatliners’ is another curiosity cash-in. For fans of the original, the interest is how the new cast will compare with Joel Schumacher’s original’s ensemble. For newcomers sadly there is a little else than an intriguing premise that fails to catch fire.
With only both Ellen Paige and Diego Luna’s acting standing out from the other flatliners, the temperature of this remake never threatens to burst its PG-13 rating. Neither scary nor intriguing, 2017’s ‘Flatliners’ resembles a limp cross between ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ and ‘Final Destination’ with all of its teeth pulled out. Even with Kiefer Sutherland’s identikit cameo teasing a reference to the former movie, it becomes abundantly clear that even had his father chewed the scenery better, this is one patient watch that is determined to stay in a vegetive state.
Divorced and disconnected from the charm of the original’s casting ensemble, this eighties remake never really makes it out of the hospital alive. For whilst ‘Flatliners’ 2017’s photogenic cast might be able to come back to life, the questionable magic of the original has definitely been left behind.