Movie Reviews

Identity Crisis (Victor Frankenstein Review)

When the experiments in their groundbreaking research into immortality, mad, genius, scientist Victor Frankenstein (James McAvoy) go too far, only Igor Strausman (Daniel Radcliffe), his equally brilliant protégé, can bring him back from the brink of madness and save him from his monstrous creation while evading capture from the determined Inspector Turpin (Andrew Scott).

So you probably already know about this story and Igor (Radcliffe) pretty much says just as much at the beginning of the film. But the story in this film is a little different from the story that everyone knows. For one thing, the film is told from the perspective of Igor and he narrates on occasion and is sort of a prequel to Frankenstein. I was not a big fan of this decision as a film called “Victor Frankenstein” should focus more on Victor Frankenstein. There are other things, but I won’t give any of those away right now although I will say that the obvious things that were supposed to happen did happen. The things that did happen were different, perhaps too different for some including myself and to me, the film started going down from there. I will say that it was interesting to get a Victor Frankenstein and Igor origin story as most stories involving those characters tend to focus on the monster which they create rather than those who created him (and sometimes her). I haven’t read the original book, Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley so I’m just assuming here. Igor’s (no name yet) first scenes in the circus were interesting to see but I wish they would have been longer just so Igor’s role in the plot could have been a little more developed. Also I did not like the placement of the scenes we got in the film as I didn’t agree with them being first which goes to my point about not liking the film from Igor’s perspective. As I’ve said already, the plot is pretty straightforward but the film tried to add all these other subplots like Igor’s love interest Lorelei (Jessica Brown Findlay) and Victor’s (McAvoy) family troubles that I just didn’t care about. This is mostly because they didn’t bother spending anytime developing those or any of the other subplots. The only thing I cared about was Frankenstein and Igor working together to bring something back from the dead. Just like that, the only parts of this film I cared about were those with Frankenstein and Igor as I found McAvoy and Radcliffe had great chemistry together. Despite the silly story, I still thought each were great in the film especially McAvoy who was a little over-the-top with his performance as Frankenstein. Because of this, I couldn’t help but to compare it to Robert Downey Jr.’s many performances as Sherlock Holmes in that series of films as the depiction of Victor Frankenstein in this film feels like a ripoff of that character. I just never got fully engaged with this film as it tried to be many things, comedy, drama, horror, thriller, etc, but didn’t succeed at a single one. Overall, this is just a disappointing film that is still watchable thanks to the performances of McAvoy and Radcliffe.

Score: 5.5/10

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