Sometimes hitting the multiplex just isn’t in the cards. That’s when cable, the web and streaming step in to provide an instant movie fix. But how to separate the wheat from the chaff? I’m happy to help.
The Story: Frankenstein’s monster watched his “father” freeze to death. Now, he’s got nothin’ to do and nothin’ but time, because for some reason he won’t die (or age.) But hey, demons are trying to suss out his whole “living forever” thing. Good thing gargoyles have his back. Yep. Gargoyles, of the Gargoyle Order. Yeah.
The Good: Excellent FX. Some decent gargoyle/demon battles.
The Bad: Um. Where to start? The silly concept that could have stood alone without adding Frankie to it. The tossed-in “because science!” folks that only seem to serve…um, well, not even a love interest. Just there for looking all deep and thinky and shit. Re-purposing Underworld baddie Bill Nighy as the I, Frankenstein baddie (not that there’s any such thing as too much Nighy. But still; don’t be quite so cookie-cutter, m’kay?) The Big Bad Reveal that looked like G’Kar on a bender (another cookie-cutter alert). The fact that while watching this I got 12 levels up on Gummy Drop rather than investing my full attention once I realized that this film had absolutely nothing to say, and no real entertainment value beyond mythological creatures blowing up.
What really pisses me off is that I, Frankenstein was supposed to be a launch pad for a series that would ultimately have seen a Frankie/Underworld crossover. Dammit. Y’all should have done better. Combining these two promising mythologies would have been truly wonderful in the right hands. Emphasis on right hands. This is a muddled mess that leaves nothing but the bitter taste of missed opportunity. No matter how spectacular Aaron Eckhart’s abs are.
The Everything Else: Hey, a centuries long rivalry between mythological good guys & mythological bad guys, with a super-special person/monster/thing that bucks the system. Yeah, I loved this story when it was called Underworld. But apparently Kevin Grevioux can only come up with one basic premise, and after he brought us the stylish noir of Underworld, that’s all he’s got. Granted, I, Frankenstein could possibly be a totally kickass graphic novel, with a rivalry like this backing it up. But in this incarnation, it’s bled dry. Perhaps Selena got jealous (and thirsty)? I still would love to knock back a beer with Grevioux, because he obviously has some fantastic ideas. But next time, pleasepleaseplease tap a collaborator. Pair up with someone like Ennis or Snyder…and blow my ass out of the water. I’d love that.
Here’s the breakdown:
Would I watch it again?: NO. Unless I lost a bet, or a bunch of my fellow horror fiends were blasted and we MST3K’d this puppy. Or just wanted to see Eckhart’s abs under some seriously heavy spirit glue & latex scarring.
Should you see it?: You like the premise? Re-watch Underworld.
Netflix average rating: 2 stars
My rating: 2 stars. Didn’t hate it, but didn’t enjoy it either.