Tuesday, November 4, 2014

I, Frankenstein

Watched October 20, 2014

Starring: Aaron Eckhart, Yvonne Strahovski, Miranda Otto, Billy Nighy

What if Frankenstein's monster was just misunderstood and really had a soul after all? What if Gargoyles had something to do with it? What if Gargoyles were actually protectors that kept demons at bay? All these questions and more are presented in I, Frankenstein, but not thoroughly answered or made into a fun movie. 

When I saw the trailer for this movie I knew it was a bomb especially with its January release date, the month where movies go to die. I even wanted to make a special theater field trip, but it only lasted about a week and I missed the chance. My favorite bad movie period is the late '70s through the early '90s, probably because that's what was available to rent when I was a kid in the '90s, but I know that bad movie are made all the time so I'm always on the look out for a new one.

It begins with Frankenstein's monster explaining his existence, how he wasn't asked to be created so when he killed his creator's wife it was out of confusion. When Dr. Frankenstein tried to kill his creation, the creation outlasted him by being impervious to the cold. After that Frankenstein's monster kept a low profile and just slunk around the woods. In the mid 1800's he runs into some demons who try to kidnap him, but then he's saved by some Gargoyle warriors. The Gargoyle warriors take Frankenstein's monster to their Queen, Leonore and she explains the eternal battle between the Gargoyles and the demons. Leonore is curious why the demons would want to capture Frankenstein. She determines that he is a real being and gives him the name Adam. The Gargoyles recruit Adam to join their demons destroying cause but he decides to run away instead. He does take some demon bashing sticks with him though. 

Adam (Aaron Eckhart) keeps his loner status and wanders around for another hundred plus years killing the demons that he runs into. It is now modern day and Terra (Yvonne Strahovski) is a scientist who is working on reanimating a rat. She seems to be getting closer, but there is a long way to go. Her benefactor Naberius (Bill Nighy) is actually a demon who is very invested in reanimating corpses. The Gargoyles have been keeping an eye on him, but they have been losing a lot of their people in the ongoing battle. The Gargoyles have Dr. Frankenstein's diary that shows how to reanimated dead tissue. The demons kidnap Leonore and make a trade for the book. They are also trying to capture Adam this whole time. Luckily he meets up with Terra and he tries to convince her to stop her work. Adam uncovers as ridiculously large warehouse that is filled with an army of bodies waiting to be reanimated.

The Gargoyles do trade the book for the recovery of their Queen, which infuriates her. The demons are able to unlock the real secrets of reanimation and Terra is forced to perform them. This creates an army of Frankensteins that battle the Gargoyles. Most of the Gargoyles are killed but somehow Naberius and is army is destroyed. Adam heads off alone to keep battling the demons to save humanity.

There is not a bit of humor in this entire movie. There are so many terrible battle scenes that just get lost in blurs of CGI. No one seems to live in the city where this takes place except for the main characters, it's mostly filled with tons of giant warehouses. Which explains why it was the perfect breeding ground for the army of the undead. There are lots of sweeping shots of the CGI city, including the cathedral of the Gargoyles that has a million flying buttresses which reminding me of the terrible sweeping CGI shots in Dungeons & Dragons.

Since this movie posits that Frankenstein's monster is immortal it raised a lot of questions. Does he eat or go to the bathroom? How did he live 200+ years just being a demon hunter?

While I haven't actually seen an entire Underworld movie, the tone of this movie reminded me of that series. It turns out the one of the actors/co-writers on the third Underworld movie created the I, Frankenstein comic book and therefore make this movie possible. I can see where they would have loved to turn this into a new franchise but it's such a stretch. Werewolves and Vampires are things that people know about, multiple Frankenstein and Gargoyles that come to life is a totally unknown story is something that I'm not looking into exploring more.

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