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|Index||12 reviews in total|
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I can't decide whether this is one of the best films I've ever seen or
one of the worst, but it is definitely one of the strangest. I was
expecting a benign period piece, with the challenge to write a horror
story issued over a glass of port in front of the fireplace. What I
found was an exploration of the egos, neuroses, and idiosyncrasies of
some very creative, intelligent, and troubled people. The appearance of
the monster in the middle of the film bothered me, but I've since
realized/decided/guessed that it's SYMBOLIC (emphasis intentional) of
the influence that Mary Shelley's book and its reception by the
literary world had upon this group of friends. I'm going to have to dig
out old textbooks and read up on these writers, as I don't recall
knowing before of the wave of suicides and unfortunate deaths which
washed over them in a short span of time.
The settings and photography of this film are as good as it gets, with beautiful natural light used most of the time. I'd recommend this movie to adult viewers, but not for anyone under 17. This thing would've been disturbing to me when I was in my early teens, and the monster would've scared the crap out of me.
I disagree with most of the critics, I think it's an excellent film. Camera, music, colors, everything is an harmonic combination. The only possible critic might be, the film can be a little be pretentious, but I would never describe it as tedious. You like it or hate it, I am of the fortunate ones.
Badly acted, with a sense of a lack of direction, the only saving grace
for this film are the wonderful settings and the score.
One would not recommend this movie to anyone other than fans of 'early Grant and Hurley', but one wonders how many of them there are!
The script is the biggest hurdle. While it contains wonderful references and allusions to the most interesting lines spoken by the historical personages, and does indeed contain some of the words of the poets, the script fills padded out with unnecessary archaisms at best and drivel at worst.
What is most strikingly dull about the work is the character of the monster. Whilst the monotony of the voice is supposed to give us certain Gothic impressions, we are left in fact with only a sense of horror at the poor delivery and rather senseless decision to characterize death and foreboding in this way.
You could stop this picture on any frame and have a beautiful photograph suitable for framing. That is the only good thing I can say about it. The acting is generally horrible (although I did like Mr. Gomez) and the former reviewer's description of the hilarity of Hugh Grant howling in a boat is spot on. I blame the writing and directing. Most of these actors are capable of much better when given decent direction and decent dialogue to speak. The female characters are not shown to have any talent of their own, as we know at least Mrs. Shelley surely did. On the other hand, the men don't display much talent, either! This whole film is a bit like a soap opera on TV, but the acting doesn't rise to that quality. Turn the sound off and enjoy its visual beauty.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I thought this was a very interesting take on Mary Shelley's
Frankenstein and the people and history surrounding it's creation. It's
slow but worth the wait, beautifully filmed. Hugh Grant and Valentine
Pelka do a fine job. Thankfully there is less of Grant's girlfriend of
the time, Liz Hurley. She should stick to modeling.
The use of the monster as an omen of death is very interesting.
I didn't really know much about the life of Shelley or Byron before this movie.
Be aware there is some nudity, but it is not what I would consider gratuitous. I looked it up. Shelley really would walk around his house nude. He even answered the door once with no clothes.
The locations are absolutely fabulous. I so want to tour Europe and stay everywhere this was filmed.
I really loved the music and wish there was somewhere with a more detailed list of the pieces used. There is a list of the composers in the credits, but they all wrote a lot of music. Which Beethoven piano sonata? Which Mozart? You could spend a lot of time trying to find the music. There is no soundtrack released that I am aware of so you're out of luck if you want to listen to the music in the car.
If you can get the DVD or VHS on sale, worth it. But I wouldn't pay full price.
Although the story of how Mary Shelley came to write her famous horror
FRANKENSTEIN is a familiar one that has been touched on in quite a few
movies, there is always room for a different viewpoint and probably there
the germ of a good idea here but something went horribly wrong. It could be
a case of too many cooks which often happens in these international
co-productions. It has obviously been heavily cut but I don't think the
edited scenes would have helped any, we would have just been bored for
longer that's all. The acting is generally poor and the actors are miscast
especially Hugh Grant as Lord Byron who has none of the brooding qualities
one associates with the poet and who also looks downright ridiculous in
of the costumes even they may be historically accurate. There are one or
two rather pretty scenic shots but that's about it.
The whole thing ends up as so boring I would suggest it as a cure for insomnia but the music is so inapt and irritating is would probably have the opposite effect.
One to avoid.
This was amongst the worst films I have ever encountered. The cinematography was dull, with long tedious shots (like a camera on a tripod filming a stage play) interspersed with "dramatic" angles that made little sense to the content on screen. The editing was terrible, scenes matched together with the delicacy of a butcher. The plot hinged on the viewer being familiar with the historical night in which Mary Shelley wrote frankenstien. The acting was forced, with the type of character development that left you with an intense interest in seeing each of them die horribly (the sooner the better).
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