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What Critics Are Saying About Flatliners

The Flatliners reboot seems to be DOA, at least if critics have anything to say about it. The remake tells the story of a group of medical students who decide to try briefly dying before being resurrected– flatlining– but end up experiencing unexpected negative effects. The movie is led by Ellen Page, with Nina Dobrev, James Norton, Diego Luna, and Kiersey Clemons playing the rest of the students. Kiefer Sutherland also reprises his role from the original film. 

IGN's William Bibbiani gave the film a middling review, writing that it was engaging until it tried to get scary, saying that the movie is at its best when it is "dramatizing that thin line between actual science and so-called 'mad science,' which is driven more by ambition and obsession than anything resembling common sense." However, it says that the movie fails at its mission to be a horror flick, falling into overly simplistic cliches. 

Den of Geek's Mark Harrison gave the movie one out of five stars. He wrote that the movie "just lies there on the slab," saying that it is a "preachy and pointless remake" of the 1990 film on which it was based. He added that the movie fails to make you root for any of its characters, and added that it accomplishes the horror movie sin of not even being a little big scary. "Granted, this version takes a little more time over the grounded sci-fi angle before it attempts to become a horror film, but it's embarrassingly bad at it once it does," he wrote.

The AV Club's Mike D'Angelo also had a negative review, giving the film a D+. He wrote that the film is "the same dumb movie as Flatliners 1990, minus most of the surface charisma." "None of the actors succeeds in making any of this nonsense credible, or even in establishing much of a personality," he wrote. "As in the original, efforts at spookiness are undermined by sappiness; the flatliners come to understand that they need to be forgiven by those they harmed, or forgive themselves, turning what should be a tale of fanatical hubris into a lightweight self-help manual."

CinemaBlend's Conner Schwerdtfeger gave the film two out of five stars, calling it "competently directed and well-acted" but still "run-of-the-mill." "Flatliners boils down to a series of fake-out jump scares scattered throughout a relatively predictable narrative, and culminates in a rushed climax that simply doesn't pay off the preceding story in an emotionally satisfying way," he wrote. "There's quite a bit of style here, but minimal substance."

If you want to form an opinion on the horror film for yourself, Flatliners is in theaters now.