OldKingClancy posted a MOVIE REVIEW item: 2 months ago

Flatliners (1990)


Directed by: Joel Schumacher
Written by: Peter Filard
Cast: Kiefer Sutherland, Julia Roberts, Kevin Bacon, William Baldwin
Studio: Columbia
Genre: Horror
Official Site:
Plot: It's A Good Day To Die


This won't be long because I really don't have anything to say about this flick, maybe it's because I've never seen it before now but it's dated and boring and empty to the point where I'm trying to wonder if I actually watched the film or not.

Admittedly the concept is good, a group of medical students trying to see if there is life after death, it's an idea that's plague man for centuries and trying to crack it scientifically makes sense as a next step. Having them all come back seeing guilt from their past was a nice touch but they don't really do much with it passed a few odd sequences, I think part of me was expecting more of a slasher type film, at least somebody dying for real.

Biggest issue was that everyone was kinda boring and none of their problems were all that interesting - again probably a byproduct of watching a 27 year old movie - Sutherland killed a kid by accident and responded by yelling a lot. Roberts thought she drove her dad to suicide but otherwise complained about the boys being overprotective. Bacon was a bully to a black girl and that was about it, he's arguably the best character since he's the only one getting shit done. Platt and Baldwin are both just sort of there, Platt looking like an Oxford reject and Baldwin fucking anything that moves.

After a while I just didn't care what their end-goals were, the film spent half the runtime just setting up the premise that by the time everyone came to fight their demons I felt like too much time had been wasted and we basically just had to run through everyone's problems without any time to stop and take it all in.

To his credit, Schumacher does have some good directing moments, his use of lighting is effective with a lot of intense colours, reds and blues mostly with some orange thrown in for the lighter moments. The whole film has that early 90s, gothic atmosphere which can be good or bad depending on how its used, there's a lot of smoke and shadows which add to the effectiveness of some scenes but it's such a timescale for this film it just feels old watching it. Likewise. while the editing is incredibly dated I can see the effect he was going for with the afterlife scenes.

It's just... maybe I was expecting something stronger, something more in line with the horror genre and instead I got something that's basically a PG-13 with a few extra F-Bombs and about 5 seconds of nudity. There's no scares, nothing even chilling about the film, a few good scenes - Bacon on the train and Robert seeing zombie-dad being two decent highlights - but I couldn't feel anything remotely thrilling about the film and was kinda bored throughout it.

In short, good concept with a few good parts but overall a bland and forgettable piece of the 90s.



Other reviews of this film: DropDeadFred (6/10) > Display all
HAIL_TO_THE_KING at 03:16 AM Oct 08

i was never a big fan watched it years ago and felt meh about it

piranhafeast at 07:28 AM Oct 08

The movie la still visually stunning To this day.. The themes explored through the story are powerfull and the cast is awesome. Flatliners remains one of my favorite films from the 90s.

Back to OldKingClancy's MOVIE REVIEWS