Movie Review: I, Frankenstein (2014) (3 1/2 stars)

I, Frankenstein is the latest sci-fi/fantasy/paranormal film to grace the theatres. It stars Aaron Eckhart as Adam Frankenstein (the monster, obviously), Miranda Otto (from The Lord of the Rings fame) as Leonore, Queen of the Gargoyles, Bill Nighy (from the first Underworld movie) as Naberius, the Demon Prince, and a number of lesser-known actors I did not recognize. The movie tells the story of the Frankenstein “monster” from Mary Shelley’s famous book. Although Dr. Victor Frankenstein tried to destroy the monster he had created, he failed, and the monster was left to wander the world for many years. He learns that the energy used to bring him to life gave him virtual immortality. He does not age, but he holds onto a deep resentment and anger.

 

He returns to civilized society about two hundred years after he wandered north into the ice-lands. Much has changed, but before he can accustom himself to such, he is attacked by several demons, although he destroys one (descends it, as it is called) the others are on the verge of capturing him when two gargoyles intervene to save him. The gargoyles are minions of heaven, set on earth under the order of the archangel Michael to wage an eternal war against the demons of hell. When gargoyles die, they ascend into heaven; when demons die, they descend into hell. Soon, the monster finds himself in the middle of the gargoyle-demon war. The demons want the monster for something and the gargoyles need to find that out. Leonore gives the monster the name “Adam” because she thinks it suits him. He, however, is not so sure he wants to help the gargoyles. He is more of a loner, used to going his own way.

 

Strengths: there’s a lot of action in this movie with demons and gargoyles being killed. The Adam character is reasonably well-developed; the other characters aren’t necessarily bad, but they aren’t stellar either. The story held together well and everything flowed logically from one thing into another. Weaknesses: like I said, some of the minor characters were weak, but I think that’s because they only had ninety minutes worth of movie and too many minor characters (most of whom died anyway) to really develop fully. The special effects left a bit to be desired, but I generally don’t judge movies on the basis of special effects—it’s not really their fault if they don’t have a 200 million dollar budget.

 

Anyway, it was worth the respite I got: I’ll give I, Frankenstein three and a half stars out of five.

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