Horror review: I, Frankenstein

I-Frankenstein

ORIGINALLY POSTED ON STRAIGHT.COM, JAN. 24, 2014

As anyone who’s ever read Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein knows, the biggest obstacle to successfully creating life from death is that pesky part about the soul missing. You can transplant as many stolen hearts and brains as you want, but without a soul your stitched-up fellow’s still gonna be a monstrous mess.

Kinda like I, Frankenstein.

The woefully miscast Aaron Eckhart (monsters aren’t supposed to be handsome) stars as the titular mad scientist’s doomed creation, who we first encounter carrying his master’s dead body across a frozen tundra. After he buries the doc in the shadow of an ancient church he’s set upon by its horde of gargoyles and taken to their elegant leader Leonore (Mirando Otto), who reverently explains the sacred, centuries-old battle her kind has been fighting for survival.

She could have just said: “It’s like Underworld, but instead of vampires against werewolves it’s us against demons.”

The rest of the movie is a numbing array of CGI-staged fight scenes where gargoyles and demons constantly smash through walls and windows and swing at each other with steel clubs and curved blades until one or the other disintegrates in a flash of flame and sparks before “ascending” Highlander-like to another realm or whatever.

He, Frankenstein eventually comes across demon leader Naberious (Bill Nighy), a rich and powerful villain who’s trying to create life himself, enlisting well-meaning scientist Terra (Yvonne Strahovski). Predictably, she winds up rebelling against her evil employer and taking Frankie’s side, and when she sees him with his shirt off says: “You’re only a monster if you behave like one.”

Poor Mary Shelley must be rolling in her grave.

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