I wasn’t overly fond of the original, so when I heard that this film was getting a remake I was unenthusiastic about it. However, seeing as its 31 days of horror I thought I’d use the opportunity to make this the first entry in my month of films. The film is directed by Niels Arden Oplev who made the Swedish Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, which was excellent. So it was interesting to check out this film and see what Oplev would be able to bring into a film that was kind of eh to begin with.
The film is about a group of young medical students who start experimenting with near death experiences, stopping their heart and reviving shortly after, in attempts to answer questions about the afterlife and what is seen in those brief moments. At first it seems that the experiences create positive experiences in memory and creativity but it turns out that something haunts the students. Its hard for them to separate reality from the horrifying images they say and they must find a way to pull through.
I don’t see Ellen Page in enough things these days so this was a rare treat. It was an odd assembly of cast but they all did fine. While the film doesn’t offer a whole lot of originality, I felt like the film was interesting enough despite having some very poor writing at many times. The films resolution is stale and seems too easy. It actually divulges into becoming a bit of an unfocused mess. Once the film commits to becoming a full fledged horror it becomes derivative. The jump scares are quite predictable and the film loses a bit of the fun it made for itself earlier.
Overall, this is a throwaway film that I don’t think anyone will think twice about. Its a nice chance to see talent like Diego Luna and Ellen Page (and HOT Nina Dobrev). Kiefer Sutherland is in the film but its a role completely unrelated to that of the original. Its stupid because a lot of what the characters are able to do after they flatline makes no sense. A lot of this film is poorly written and makes your head scratch. Its pretty entertaining, at least I found it that way despite it being a horribly executed idea that was rehashed from the original.