Thursday, March 28, 2013

Frankenstein (1994)

Frankenstein's Monster is brought back to life in the 1994 retelling of Mary Shelley's classic tale. Kenneth Branagh stars as Doctor Victor Frankenstein, a man who becomes wholly consumed with the notion of cheating death after his mother dies during childbirth. Neither the love of his life nor his friends and colleagues can deter him from his quest to create new life, until the abomination that results from his blasphemous experiments escapes to seek revenge! Unlike in Francis Ford Coppola's stylized revision of Bram Stoker's DRACULA, Branagh's film returns to the Gothic traditions of the genre with a number of wonderful set designs and gloomy exteriors that call back to the Universal classics. As the lead, Branagh's overly dramatized portrayal of the obsessed doctor can be a bit mushy at times, but he pulls through with a surprising amount of pathos as he is confronted with the corrupt ethics and morality of his actions. While he may seem like an odd choice, as well, Robert De Niro commands the role of the vengeful monster, also bringing an air of sympathy and compassion to the creature before his vile contempt for Frankenstein sets in towards the fiery finale. Steph Lady and Frank Darabont's collaborated screenplay remains considerably closer to the text than most other adaptations, although it certainly takes its own liberties with the plot and characters. In spite of its strengths, however, this version is mostly unmemorable, and fails to produce the iconic imagery of the 1931 classic. It is nevertheless a worthwhile watch for fans of Gothic Horror.

Rating: 7/10.

Movies like FRANKENSTEIN:
THE CURSE OF FRANKENSTEIN, DRACULA, TERROR OF FRANKENSTEIN, THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA, THE BRIDE, PLAGUE OF THE ZOMBIES, THE REPTILE.

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