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Gods and Monsters
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Gods and Monsters More at IMDbPro »

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Index 229 reviews in total 

fascinating

Author: Steve Baker (s.baker@iig.com.au) from Cairns Australia
26 March 2000

Gods And Monsters is a rich, perceptive film full of delights. It above all recognises and revels in the complicated, shades of grey, people we all are. Some movies manage to winkle out the wrinkles, most don't even bother to try. Gods And Monsters slips bitter sweetly into the human condition.

James Whale was a movie director who's greatest triumphs were Frankenstein and Bride of Frankenstein which were made in the mid 1930's. Skip to 1957. Whale (Ian McKellen) has had a stroke and has been beset with flashbacks to his younger years. War time horrors, his films and a love affair he had with another soldier in the trenches begins to intrude into his world.

His monsters, particularly Frankenstein's monster played by Boris Karlof starts to inhabit his waking dreams. His loved one David, (a God?) stands watching. James Whale is close to death.

He invites the gardener Clayton (Brendan Fraser) in and asks him to sit for a portrait. Clayton is homophobic, working class and at one of life's loose ends. Whale wants to talk and Clayton, fascinated by the stories, is prepared to listen.

So two complex characters interact, heightened by terrific performances from McKellen and Fraser as well as from Academy Award nominated Lynn Redgrave as the disapproving, loving, long term housekeeper for Whaley.

I'm sure that Judi Dench who won the gong over Lynn Redgrave agrees that Hanna rather than Dench's Queen Lizzie should have been honoured.

The photography from Stephen M. Katz is outstanding as is the music from Carter Burwell. Lolita Davidovitch as Clayton's girlfriend and Jack Plotnick as the film buff are memorable. The direction and screenplay from Bill Condon is superb. We have here a thought provoking, thoroughly delightful film.

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great movie about human relationships

8/10
Author: dalek69 from Tilburg, The Netherlands
16 March 2000

G.a.M. is a well written and well delivered story that captures the heart, is all about human relationships and emotions, and also looks upon homosexuality in a very human way. Performances are very good, emotions put across are believable and touching. Brendan Fraser is excellent, so is Ian McKellen. This is a movie that leaves you thinking about it after it has finished. In my opinion definitely one to watch, if you're into "intelligent" films!!!

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Great.

10/10
Author: eugine onegin
14 February 2000

Lately, I've been just watching all kinds of movies there are, from westerns to whatever, greats to epics.

This movie I was not very eager to see, at the time I couldn't stand someone even mention Brendan Fraser, so, him being in it, you'd understand. However, I got around to renting it, after sometime and seeing how it was on the top 250 charts.

Everything from the cinematography, to acting, to the feel of the movie is great, I felt connected to the characters, Ian McKellen gives a powerfull performance that is just, the best I've seen. Bredan is ok, performs like he should in the role.

There is so much that is in it, the story, which gives emotion to the movie, it's all very real, and exciting. It centers around James Whale, of whom I didn't know a lot about, and his friendship with Clayton Boone, who is the yardman.

I still don't know what is it about it, that I concider so great, but I just love it. And consider it one of my favorite movies.

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Quite Possibly One of the Best Films I've Ever Seen

9/10
Author: savanna-2 from USA
23 January 2000

I watched this movie with much anticipation. Being a fan of the three leads (Sir Ian McKellen, Brendan Fraser, Lynn Redgrave) didn't hurt, but was quite unnecessary to find this a wonderful film. If it were food, "scrumptious" comes to mind. From the sumptuous scenery, terrific writing, and elegant performances, this is the "little movie that could."

A very human look into the life of a Hollywood icon, James Whale. The performances are so easy and subtle, you forget quickly that you aren't watching the actual people this movie is based on. To top it off, it holds up well upon repeated viewing.

The very real subject matters are handled with such care and attention to detail, that the movie never slips into another tawdry tale of debauchery and excess. Five stars all the way.

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*** out of ****; Grade: B

Author: J-Crew (jms7@po.cwru.edu)
19 January 2000

Soft, elegiac film about the last days of Hollywood director James Whale and the loves (film, men, art) that have drifted in and out of his life right up to his suicide. Well-made film is uneven and occasionally inexplicable in some of its flashback and fantasy scenes, and McKellan is a little over-the-top. However, Fraser and Redgrave acquit themselves very nicely, and the film is ultimately a heartbreaking account of endless longing.

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Loved it

Author: Roger-81 from United States
14 January 2000

I was interested in seeing this movie because I heard of the great performances but wasn't sure whether I'd like it or not. What an intriguing movie. I wasn't exactly sure what I was watching with the development of the relationships between the characters in this movie which made it all the more fascinating. It's been so long since I've seen the Frankenstein, Bride of Frankenstein, and other James Whale movies that I didn't remember them, but after seeing this movie, I want to go back and watch them to see if I can learn more about such a fascinating person as James Whale. When I saw Ian McClellan, Brendan Fraser, and Lynn Redgrave all sitting together at the Academy Awards last year, I was rather struck with the way they seemed to be very close, supportive and relishing the honors bestowed on their fellow comrades involved with this movie. After seeing them in this movie together, I realize that I have witnessed a collaboration of fine artists who have produced something more than just each playing their part and doing a fine job of acting, these artists have connected with each other and raised their performances to a higher level that is mesmerizing. 10 for performances, imagination and uniqueness.

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Loved it

Author: Roger-81 from United States
14 January 2000

I was interested in seeing this movie because I heard of the great performances but wasn't sure whether I'd like it or not. What an intriguing movie. I wasn't exactly sure what I was watching with the development of the relationships between the characters in this movie which made it all the more fascinating. It's been so long since I've seen the Frankenstein, Bride of Frankenstein, and other James Whale movies that I didn't remember them, but after seeing this movie, I want to go back and watch them to see if I can learn more about such a fascinating person as James Whale. When I saw Ian McClellan, Brendan Fraser, and Lynn Redgrave all sitting together at the Academy Awards last year, I was rather struck with the way they seemed to be very close, supportive and relishing the honors bestowed on their fellow comrades involved with this movie. After seeing them in this movie together, I realize that I have witnessed a collaboration of fine artists who have produced something more than just each playing their part and doing a fine job of acting, these artists have connected with each other and raised their performances to a higher level that is mesmerizing. 10 for performances, imagination and uniqueness.

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That dark world where I lost my way.

Author: Ron Plasma from Broadbottom
9 November 1999

I'm getting behind again so let me wrap up Gods and Monsters.

I fell asleep! In my defence I was watching video - the film never really appealed, but a completer has to do what a completer has to do - and the central heating was on for the first time this winter. To be fair also, I did surface for the last half-hour and the protracted dialogue did sustain my interest. But always distrust reviews of films about the film industry. They will tend to rave over what is in reality a tea dance.

Now. What's left to do? Ah yes. Bowfinger and that thing about the Prime Minister losing his way.

Ron

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A master class in acting, a truly act of love for cinema.

9/10
Author: Marco Busato (marco.venezia70@gmail.com) from Venice, Italy
2 November 1999

A wonderful screenplay, both simple in its plot and oozing with love for cinema (the same way "Sunset Boulevard", just to name one, did).

A trio of players giving their career-best performances (and, in Sir Ian McKellen's case, I didn't think he would have ever surpass his towering performance in "Richard III").

One of the most beautiful seduction scenes ever.

A haunting score, courtesy of Carter Burwell, that succeed, with its simplicity, in evoking the confused memories of the great director.

And the entire atmosphere... Simply unforgettable!!!

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Perfection

Author: Roddy-8 from Lincoln England
22 October 1999

These days it makes a change to find a film with a really strong story. As this one is based on some factual events, it made it even more remarkable. The decline of a great man due to illness and old age is beautifully illustrated in this film. The acting brilliance of Sir Ian McKellan has never been more apparant and the support from Brendan Fraser and Lynn Redgrave was outstanding. Full marks also to the director Bill Condon, who also produced the script. I was left with tears in my eyes, and I think I will have to wait a long time before another film of such quality arrives on the scene. You can keep your blockbusters and action adventures, give me a film with a story everytime.

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