One of the very first horror movies ever made, J. Searle Dawley's 1910 short Frankenstein, was an adaptation of Mary Shelley's famous cautionary tale about the perils of trying to imbue dead flesh with life. A century has passed since then and it looks like the message still hasn't quite sunk in for horror movie characters, because upcoming Blumhouse Productions film The Lazarus Effect is all about of a team of scientists trying to - you guessed it - bring the dead back to life.
Mark Duplass (The League) and Olivia Wilde (TRON: Legacy) play Frank and Zoe, two researchers who achieve the apparently impossible by bringing a deceased dog back to life using a miracle serum they've been working on. When Zoe is accidentally electrocuted and a defibrillator won't do the trick, Frank of course decides that the best course of action is to pump her full of the serum and bring her back to life. Problem solved, right?
Even if the incredibly spoilerific first trailer hadn't given it away, it's pretty obvious from The Lazarus Effect's horror movie status that Zoe's miraculous resurrection doesn't end happily. At least, not if the black eyes and visions of demons and hell are anything to go by. The second trailer gives away slightly less - at least, it doesn't spoil any character deaths - but it makes up for this by showing a scene from the very end of the movie first.
Between the two trailers it looks like The Lazarus Effect's plot beats will closely align with those of Mary Lambert's chilling 1989 film Pet Sematary (with a dose of Flatliners thrown in). The Lazarus Effect is director David Gelb's first feature-length drama, and the script was written by Luke Dawson (Shutter) and Jeremy Slater, the latter of whom also worked on the screenplay for Fantastic Four at one point.
The cast is kind of odd, in the sense that it's largely made of people that you wouldn't expect to see in a horror movie like this. Duplass is best known for his work in the mumblecore genre and for comedy films and TV shows, though he did pen the script for 2013 horror film Black Rock. Donald Glover is another surprise casting, since he also mainly sticks to comedy - both on TV and in his stand-up shows. The film also marks Wilde's first appearance in a horror film since the 2006 release Paradise Lost.
The Lazarus Effect's trailer doesn't excite a "must-see" response, but Blumhouse Productions has a good reputation that's well-deserved and the movie made it onto our list of most-anticipated February releases. It's probably worth checking out, if only because this month's pickings are pretty slim.
The Lazarus Effect is in theaters on February 27th, 2015.
Source: Yahoo! Movies