"I, Frankenstein" Review- Craig's First Take

Photo Credit: Photo by Ben King – © 2013 - Lionsgate

Why did Victor Frankenstein shun his creation? I mean it has a nice head of hair, a handsome square-jawed face, muscles and abs, and along with much of the rest of the world, seems to know English and grammar better than most college athletes. Sure, he has some deep scars and most of his body parts come from other people but if Obamacare continues, he won’t be the only one.

“I, Frankenstein” makes Victor seem like the Jewish mother of all mad scientists, you wonder what’s good enough to be loved. But as far as the movie goes, Victor would have a legitimate beef. It’s awful, really awful. So awful all future relatives may even want to consider changing their name to Frankensteen, at least until this thing is forgotten.

Aaron Eckhart plays this new, handsome monster. Mary Shelley seemed to know exactly where to leave- off her story, but Kevin Grevioux (one of the creators of “Underworld”) and Stuart Beattie (the writer of “Collateral” if you can believe it) continue on, putting him right in the middle of a silly war between gargoyles and demons 200 years in the future. The gargoyles see Frankenstein, who they laughably christen with the first name of Adam for no reason whatsoever, as a he, not an it, and see his strength as a solid contribution to the war effort.

The demons on the other hand are looking to bring back their dead brethren by first jamming blown-to-bit demon particles into some dead bodies, and then trying to find a way to re-animate the bodies. The villain, Naberius (Bill Nighy, doing his best to try to make this not seem completely stupid), enlists the help of a doctor (Yvonne Strahovski, who like most doctors in movies like this is blonde and hot) to make this happen. He also sees the potential in using the Victor Frankenstein method of re-animation so finding Adam and Victor’s science book is also a priority.

The dramatic arc for Adam is he’s neither man, gargoyle, or demon, but the movie fails at leaving his humanity or his heroism in doubt, the “see, you really do have a heart” moment is just bad, not shockingly bad. His scars alone hardly make him an atrocity either. When he starts bitching about not having a soul, he seems less like a monster and more like that friend who calls you up saying he’ll never find love again after just getting dumped.

Of course he can’t die which makes the whole thing sort of tedious. Even more so is that the demons seem to explode into firey particles with just the slightest touch. Not only is it not exciting, but the dark seriousness in which all this stupidity is played out just makes it punishingly dull. And speaking of demons and soullessness, put the two together and you’ll have a pretty good idea of what all the gothic-looking special effects seem like.

“I Frankenstein” is stupid, but even that would be ok if it actually found a way to be entertaining. This movie just begs to be electrocuted, without the slightest threat of being reborn.