Flatliners (1990) – Review, Rating and Synopsis

Flatliners (1990) - Review, Rating and Synopsis

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  • Release Date:  1990
  • Genre:  Ghost & Spirit
  • Cast & Crew: Kiefer Sutherland, Julia Roberts, Kevin Bacon, William Baldwin, Oliver Platt, Hope Davis, John Duda, Megan Stewart, Tressa Thomas.
  • Director: Joel Schumacher
  • Screenwriter:  Peter Filardi

Flatliners (1990)Rating:

  • Dylan = 8 / 10;
  • Eloise = 7 / 10;
  • Raoul = 7.5 / 10;
  • Simina = 8 / 10
  • IMDb = 6.6/10;
  • Rotten Tomatoes = 4.8/10;

Flatliners (1990) Synopsis:

Five medical students want to reach recognition for their idea of experiencing death and coming back to tell the world what happens to their soul in the afterlife.

Flatliners (1990) Review:

Nelson (Kiefer Sutherland) wants to experiment dying, hoping he’ll come back with the answer the entire world was searching for since the beginning of mankind. And being a medical student, it allows him to have the medical equipment he needs to be brought back from the other side. He convinces Dr. Joe Hurley (William Baldwin) and Randy Steckle (Oliver Platt) to help him set up a medical room in an abandoned building where no one would disrupt their study. Dr. Rachel Mannus (Julia Roberts) who was obsessed with death, and David Labraccio (Kevin Bacon), an atheist, join the party of three. Except for Steckel, who was only there to document the process, one by one die on the surgical table, and come back, dragging from the darkness, things from their past they would rather forget. After experiencing death, Nelson is haunted by a boy he used to bully when he was a kid. Joe, who filmed every woman he slept with without her knowing, comes back finding them on every corner. David discovers that his only sin was a girl he used to torment when they were preteens and Rachel feels guilty for the death of her father.

Re-watching Flatliners on Kevin Bacon’s birthday (because it’s my favorite movie with him) reminded me of the first time I ever laid eyes on it when I was around 11 years old. This movie scared the hell out of me and it also made me obsessed with death and what awaits us in the afterlife, an obsession that lasted for several years. As you know, kids are easily influenced by what they see and hear. Now, seeing it as an adult, it remains my favorite Kevin Bacon movie, but without the terror, I felt in my younger years. The nightmarish atmosphere is still there, with images that feel haunting and surreal. The five actors are great in their roles. They all are very well-known, but back in 1990 their names only have begun to get some recognition in the world of the film industry. Joel Schumacher who had previously directed The Lost Boys, a cult horror classic starring Kiefer Sutherland, uses his dark vision on this one too. For me, Flatliners is a cult horror/sci-fi, right along with The Prophecy, The Lost Boys, Evil Dead, etc.

That being said, I recommend it. Unlike Martyrs (sadly, I can’t think of another horror movie that deals with this subject), Flatliners doesn’t go overboard, and the characters attempt to find an answer to the most asked question is displayed in a more thought-provoking manner. The premise of an afterlife will always have many fans in cinema and literature, worldwide. It gets an 8/10 from me.

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