31 in 31 – “Frankenstein’s Monster’s Monster, Frankenstein”

“I lost my best friend that day. How am I ever going to make a guy like that again?”

Story: Surprise! Actor David Harbour is actually David Harbour III! And in this “documentary”, he digs into his father’s past, focusing on a play that was supposed to be a sequel to Frankenstein. Let’s just say it’s no classic. But the backstage antics sure are.

Scares: Zero. Because comedy.

Splat factor: Zero. Ditto.

Closing scene “shocker”?: Maybe…?

Remake, Sequel or OG (Original Ghoul)?: Absolutely original.

Trick or Treat?: #1, this mockumentary is 100% horseshit. #2 it makes absolutely no difference – it’s hilarious. Shot like an In Search Of episode, with David Harbour playing “himself”, “his father”, and characters “his father” would play. It’s confusing, but it’s supposed to be. “Harbour Jr.” has a yearning for German expressionism…but he’s hilariously off base. Harbor plays this character as a vainglorious man thisclose to a parody of 70s Era Orson Welles. (Jr. doing a steak commercial is funny and savage in equal measure.)

The plot is a surreal mess, with scenes that cut from present day to onstage with Jr., to “footage” from interviews and old commercials. And keep an eye out for Alfred Molina  playing “the best actor ever”, Aubrey Fields, and his strange version of Inside the Actor’s Studio called “The Actor’s Trunk”. It’s tough to keep track, but I found if you just accept the crazy and accept you’ve landed in Bizzaro World, it’s a good time.

Fans of horror, classic films, Christopher Guest, and/or the theater will love this tongue-in-cheek look at the history of the performing arts. Filled with self-obsessed actors, hammy on-stage performances, and revelations about Harbour’s “dad” that confuse Harbour but made me chuckle.

At a hair over a half hour, this is a quick and dirty low budget hoot. Put this on before you settle into a Hammer horror marathon, or as a starter for What We Do in the Shadows.

Score: 3.5 out of 5 pumpkins.

About Denise

Professional nerd. Lover of licorice.
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