I, Frankenstein hits Berlin theatres on January 23.
Okay, so… unbeknownst to us humans, a war has been raging for ages between gargoyles (good) and demons (evil), and Frankenstein’s creature (Eckhart: awful) gets caught up in the middle. Sounds ridiculous because it is. Before everything is settled, the movie takes us through a mind-numbing rush of noise and nonsense, presented in the diction and emotional sophistication of professional wrestling broadcasts and punctuated by the garbled grunts of ogre-like beasts panting, pontificating, or exploding to pieces.
Save for a rushed opening sequence, the action is set in a slightly retrofied version of the present, as the two factions of monsters clash constantly in a video game-like manner, while randomly morphing in and out of human form. Only Eckhart, inexplicably handsome and well-groomed as the undead patchwork protagonist, has no CGI’ed alter ego to transform into and is left staring at the camera, apparently unsure whether to emulate The Terminator or a telenovela melodrama with his performance.
Meanwhile, poor Bill Nighy as evil demon overlord could have provided the one dash of charisma, but is reduced to uselessly over-enunciating his inane lines before he mercifully turns into a computer-rendered carnival mask of a plastic devil, red eyes and horns and all.
I, Frankenstein not only utterly lacks – very much like its eponymous hero – a soul (just to grant this lackluster piece of commerce the lazy analogy it deserves and, clearly, begs for), but any trace of technical savvy, visual ingenuity and simple entertainment value, as well.
I, Frankenstein | Directed by Stuart Beattie (2014) with Aaron Eckhart, Bill Nighy and Yvonne Strahovski. Starts January 23