Thursday, July 21, 2022

Flatliners: Limited Edition – Arrow Video (4k UHD)

Theatrical Release Date: USA, 1990
Director: Joel Schumacher
Writer: Peter Filardi
Cast: Kiefer Sutherland , Julia Roberts, Kevin Bacon, William Baldwin, Oliver Platt, Kimberly Scott, Joshua Rudoy, Benjamin Mouton, Hope Davis

Release Date: August 1st, 2022 (UK), August 2nd, 2022 (USA)
Approximate Running Time: 114 minutes 10 Seconds
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 Widescreen / 2160 Progressive / HEVC / H.265 / Dolby Vision HDR10
Rating: R (Theatrical Cut), 15 (Director’s Cut)
Sound: DTS-HD 5.1 English, LPCM Stereo English
Subtitles: English SDH
Region Coding: Region Free
Retail Price: £29.99 (UK), $49.95 (USA)

"At the University Hospital School of Medicine, five ambitious students subject themselves to a daring experiment: to temporarily induce their own deaths, hoping to glimpse the afterlife before being brought back to life. But as competition within the group intensifies and their visions of the world beyond increasingly bleed into their waking lives, they're about to learn that the greatest threat comes not from the spirit world but from the long-suppressed secrets of their own pasts..." - synopsis provided by the distributor

Video: 5/5

Here’s the information provided about the transfer, “Flatliners was restored in 4K by Sony Pictures Entertainment. 4K scanning by Prasad Corporation, Burbank, from the 35mm original picture negative.

HDR color grading and conform by colorist Sheri Eisenberg at Roundabout Entertainment, Santa Monica. Digital image restoration by Prasad Corporation, India.

Restoration supervised by Bill Karydes for SPE, with color approval by cinematographer Jan de Bont.”

Flatliners comes on a 100 GB triple layer 4K UHD.

Disc Size: 89.1 GB

Feature: 81.2 GB

It is safe to say that anyone who had Mill Creek’s 2017 Blu-ray can throw it away. This new transfer from Arrow Video looks amazing. Notable areas of improvement over this film’s previous Blu-ray releases include image clarity and color saturation. Contrast and shadow detail are also noticeably improved, and the image retains an organic look.

Audio: 5/5 (DTS-HD 5.1 English, LPCM Stereo English)

This release comes with two audio options, a DTS-HD 5.1 mix in English and a LPCM stereo mix in English. Both audio mixes are superior to any audio mix from any of this film’s previous Blu-ray releases. Both the audio mixes sound clear, balanced, and robust. Range-wise, ambient sounds are well-represented, and the score sounds appropriately robust. The differences between these two audio mixes are minimal, with the DTS-HD 5.1 audio track offering a slightly more expansive audio experience. Included with this release are removable English SDH subtitles.


Extras for this release include an image gallery (12 images-stills), a theatrical trailer (1 minute 27 seconds, LPCM stereo English, no subtitles), an interview with costume designer Susan Becker titled Dressing for Character (6 minutes 26 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), an interview with composer James Newton Howard and orchestrator Chris Boardman titled Atonement (11 minutes 35 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), an interview with production designer Eugenio Zanetti and art director Larry Lundy titled Restoration (10 minutes 47 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), an interview with first assistant director John Kretchmer titled Hereafter (14 minutes 22 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), an interview with director of photography Jan de Bont and chief lighting technician Edward Ayer titled Visions of Light (18 minutes 23 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), an interview with screenwriter Peter Filardi titled The Conquest of our Generation (19 minutes 11 seconds, Dolby Digital stereo English, no subtitles), an audio commentary by film critics Bryan Reesman and Max Evry, reversible cover art, a slipcover (First Pressing Only), and a thirty-six page booklet with cast & crew information, an essay titled Land of the Almost-Dead: Flatlinersand a Historical Overview of the Near-Death Experience written by Amanda Reyes, an essay titled “See You Soon”: The Surprising Spirituality of Joel Schumacher Flatliners written by Peter Tonguette, and information about the restoration.


Despite the fact that there have been cases of people having out-of-body near-death experiences. What lies beyond, when one has passed away, has long been a mystery that may never be fully explained, at least until that moment arrives for all of us. That said, it is the exploration of what awaits us in the afterlife that is at the heart of Flatliners.

Based solely on its premise, Flatliners is a film that is full of possibilities, and fortunately, the creative talent behind Flatliners does all they can to fully exploit said premise. From its opening moments, the narrative does a fantastic job of drawing you into the story at hand. And when it comes to pacing, key moments are given an ample amount of time to resonate, which also allows viewers a moment to catch their breath without losing any of the mounting tension.

Flatliners was directed by Joel Schumacher, a filmmaker whose films are known for their stylized visuals. The result is a film that is filled with striking imagery that's synonymous with the cinema of Joel Schumacher. Flatliners' looks are highly stylized with their distinct color schemes for each character, and when it comes to symbolic imagery, Flatliners deliver in spades.

Flatliners features a solid cast. Kiefer Sutherland (The Lost Boys), Julia Roberts (Pretty Woman), Kevin Bacon (Footloose), William Baldwin (Backdraft), and Oliver Platt (A Time to Kill) are all perfectly cast and perform admirably. Another strength of the performance is how well they work with the visuals. Ultimately, Flatliners is a riveting film where everything falls into place.

Flatliners makes its way to 4K UHD via a spectacular upgrade from Arrow Video that comes with a solid audio/video presentation and a wealth of insightful extras, highly recommended.

                                                             4K UHD screenshots.

Written by Michael Den Boer

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