Most horror films succeed at taking audiences to the edge of their seats, but in 1990 one film took viewers past the brink of death. Flatliners – written by Peter Filardi, directed by Joel Schumacher, produced by Michael Douglas and Rick Bieber – premiered in theaters on August 10, 1990. This Oscar-nominated film starred Kiefer Sutherland as Nelson Wright, Julia Roberts as Rachel Manus, William Baldwin as Joe Hurley, Oliver Platt as Randy Steckle, and Kevin Bacon as Dave Labraccio.
Flatliners follows five medical students as they give new meaning to the phrase “today is a good day to die.” Determined to discover what lies beyond death, Wright convinces his fellow classmates to let him flatline him for one minute before they resuscitate him. While “dead,” Wright experiences vivid visions in this sort of afterlife. One after another, each student takes a turn flatlining, and also experience visions of past tragedies. They see everything from a child they bullied in their youth to their father committing suicide.
In the real world, the Flatliners begin experiencing hallucinations related to their afterlife visions. These haunting visions wreak havoc on their physical and mental health, blurring the lines between real and imaginary. In order to make the visions stop, each Flatliner decides to make amends with their personal demons. This psychological sci-fi thriller debuted at No. 1 and took in $10 million on its opening weekend.
Did you know audiences have another chance to stop their hearts? A sequel of the same name was recently announced by Sony and Screen Gems. Flatliners, directed by Danish filmmaker Niels Arden Oplev, stars Ellen Page, Diego Luna, Nina Dobrev, James Norton, Kiersey Clemons, with Sutherland set to reprise his role as Wright. Once again a group of young medical students attempt to conduct flatline experiments that produce near-death experiences. Cross the line on September 29, 2017.
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