Using science to resurrect the dead has been a staple of genre fiction ever since Mary Shelley met Frankenstein’s Monster during an opium freakout and decided to pen his origin story. The Lazarus Effect casts Mark Duplass and Olivia Wilde as the latest in a long line of well meaning scientists trying to play God and getting more than they bargained for.
Duplass and Wilde, along with assistants Evan Peters and Donald Glover, have developed a Serum that can jump start brain activity after death. After Wilde is electrocuted in a freak accident involving a routine animal test, Duplass uses the Serum on her, and things, of course, start to go horribly wrong.
What follows is a predictable, by the numbers affair, disappointing to say the least. Gifted performers Glover and Peters are horribly under-utilized, and though Wilde gets a lot of screen time the editing doesn’t do her character any favors, leaving the carnage she wreaks bloodless and anti-climactic.
Horror neophytes looking for a decent date movie this weekend could do a lot worse. True gorehounds should probably just stay home and watch Reanimator again.
The Lazarus Effect opens this Friday 2/27/15.