OUT THIS WEEK­END: FLAT­LIN­ERS (15)

Kentish Gazette Canterbury & District - What's On - - CINEMA -

In 1990, di­rec­tor Joel Schu­macher brought to­gether five of young Hol­ly­wood’s bright lights – Kevin Ba­con, Wil­liam Bald­win, Oliver Platt, Ju­lia Roberts and Kiefer Suther­land – for an out­landish thriller about cu­ri­ous med­i­cal stu­dents, who hope to find out what (if any­thing) lies be­yond death by in­ten­tion­ally flatlin­ing then re­sus­ci­tat­ing each other us­ing a de­fib­ril­la­tor. The re­sult­ing psy­cho­log­i­cal hor­ror hokum failed to scare up sup­port from crit­ics, but the film’s im­pres­sive sound edit­ing was nom­i­nated for an Acad­emy Award.

Dan­ish di­rec­tor Niels Ar­den Oplev hopes to im­prove on the orig­i­nal with this be­lated se­quel, which repli­cates the life-or-death in­ter­ro­ga­tions of the first film. Suther­land is the only re­turn­ing mem­ber of cast. Dr Court­ney Holmes (Ellen Page) in­vites hand­some med­i­cal stu­dent Jamie (James Nor­ton) into her lab­o­ra­tory in the base­ment for some fun. It tran­spires that her idea of “fun” is to ask Jamie to stop her heart for one minute then bring her back to the land of the liv­ing.

Court­ney hopes those 60 sec­onds will of­fer her a glimpse at an ethe­real plane be­yond our world. When she re­turns, Court­ney seems in­vig­o­rated and pos­sesses new skills such as the abil­ity to play the pi­ano. Jamie shares the se­cret with fel­low stu­dents Marlo (Nina Do­brev), Ray (Diego Luna) and Sophia (Kiersey Cle­mons) and like him, they ex­cit­edly stop their hearts to ven­ture into the light. How­ever, when they re­turn to grim re­al­ity, the stu­dents dis­cover that some­thing un­speak­able has trav­elled back with them and this dark force in­tends to claim their souls.

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