When the original Flatliners was released in 1990, it featured a who’s who of young Hollywood. Kiefer Sutherland, Julia Roberts, William Baldwin, Kevin Bacon and Oliver Platt starred as a group of med students who tempt fate by killing then resuscitating each other in an attempt to experience the afterlife in the name of science. But crossing over to the other side doesn’t come without consequences as the group of intrepid young scientists soon discover.
The inevitable remake of the cult classic is out later this year, and on Tuesday, we got the first trailer. While it’s easy to be skeptical of yet another example of Hollywood’s creative bankruptcy, it’s worth noting that like its ‘90s counterpart, the new Flatliners has assembled an all-star cast that rivals the original. Here, Ellen Page, Diego Luna, Nina Dobrev, James Norton and Kiersey Clemons play the five students who become addicted to the afterlife.
But as the trailer suggests, their quest for immortality takes an ugly turn when sinister events from their pasts begin materializing in the form of freaky visions. It’s not long before our heroes are hunted down one by one by whatever paranormal forces they’ve awakened. Though this new version has the potential to fall into the trappings of a by-the-numbers thriller, or worse, a Final Destination for the science set, we’re encouraged by the caliber of talent that agreed to be in this thing.
Page has shown remarkably good taste throughout her career and ditto for Luna, fresh off a real star turn in Rogue One. Dobrev is eyeing a promising film career now that her days on Vampire Diaries are done, while Norton and Clemons have been on the cusp for a minute. Even Sutherland has confirmed that he’s reprising his role from the original, which makes the new Flatliners something of a sequel.
Joel Schumacher, who directed the original, has been swapped out for Niels Arden Oplev, the man who gave us the original Girl with the Dragon Tattoo adaptation starring Noomi Rapace, which some fans still contend is better than David Fincher’s version. So while it may be tiresome to see Hollywood mine its past once again, all signs suggest that this remake won’t be dead on arrival.
Flatliners hits theaters on September 29, 2017. Watch the trailer below.