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Brilliantly Distasteful Cult Gem
Witchfinder General 66627 December 2009
"Flesh For Frankenstein" of 1973 is a wonderfully grotesque, bloody, bizarre, creepy, hilarious, artistic and absolutely brilliant slice of European Exploitation Horror that may not be missed by any lover of cult-cinema. The first of two takes on classic Horror tales directed by Paul Morrissey, starring Udo Kier and Joe Dallessandro and (co-)produced by iconic artist Andy Warhol (the other being "Blood For Dracula), "Flesh For Frankenstein" (which is sometimes referred to as "Andy Warhol's Frankenstein") is an Italian/French/American co-production that simply has to be seen to be believed.

A blend of rich Gothic atmosphere, grotesque artsy imagery, unvarnished sleaze and excessive gore and wonderfully black humor, "Flesh For Frankenstein" is both a tribute to- and satire of earlier Horror greats. At the time of its release, the film was highly controversial for its depiction of sex and gore and even received an X-Rating in the US: No wonder, as this unspeakably morbid little gem features all kinds of demented scenes including explicit perversions, such as necrophilia, all containing a very VERY morbid sense of humor.

Udo Kier shines as a very demented Baron Frankenstein (with a thick German accent), who lives with his sister/wife (!) Katrin (Monique Van Vooren), their two children, as well as his equally demented assistant in a castle in Serbia. Frankenstein plans to create female and a male Zombie from body parts; the natural children of his creations are then to become a perfect race of people. In the meanwhile, the super-potent stable-hand Nicholas (Joe Dallesandro) has sex with every female that crosses his way...

Udo Kier fits perfectly in the role of the Baron - extremely demented, perverted and weird, Frankenstein constantly yells at his assistant for being a pervert. This Baron is dedicated to science and obsessed with results as are other Frankenstein versions in cinema (such as those played by Colin Clive or Peter Cushing), but, unlike these predecessors, he is also demented in every other imaginable way. Udo Kier is definitely one of Germany's greatest actors and doubtlessly THE remaining expert for sinister and eccentric characters since Klaus Kinski passed away. He is truly great here. Monique van Vooren is also very good as the Baron's equally malicious sister/wife - van Vooren looks very young for her age (she was 48 when the film was made), but also really weird, since she has no eyebrows. Italian Horror enthusiasts will notice that the Frankenstein couple's daughter is played by Nicoletta Elmi, who was in many other cult-classics such as Dario Argento's "Profondo Rosso" (1975), Mario Bava's "Bay of Blood" (1971) and "Baron Blood" (1972), as well as Aldo Lado's Giallo "Who Saw Her Die?" (1972).

"Flesh For Frankenstein" is a film that is very gory and outrageously morbid for its day. When I first saw it, some scenes even reminded me of Joe D'Amato's 1979 shocker "Buio Omega" (though this film isn't quite AS demented and sick as D'Amato's film). IMDb and some other sources credit Italian Horror deity Antonio Margheriti, who happens to be an idol of mine, as co-director of this film; however, it appears that Margheriti was merely credited to draw Italian viewers into cinemas, and had little to nothing to do with the actual production of the film. Either way, this is a must-see. "Flesh For Frankenstein" is a wonderfully bizarre, atmospheric, gory, demented, morbid, incredibly (and VERY darkly) funny film, that MUST be seen by all cult-cinema fans, and, personally, I cannot understand how anyone could not love it. My rating: 10/10
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A little something to make Mary Shelley skyrocket out of her grave.
capkronos21 May 2003
Warning: Spoilers
Baron von Frankenstein (an out-of-control Udo Kier, a guy with amazing eyes) has created a beautiful female monster out of stitched together body parts and now yearns to make a male version as her companion. Meanwhile, his dissatisfied wife Katherine (Monique Van Vooren) has the ever-so-studly Joe Dallesandro (whose New York accent is way out of place) to fulfill her sexual needs. The baron mistakes Dallesandro's virginal (possibly gay) friend as him, cuts his head off and eventually puts together a male creature, in an effort to mate his two subjects.

This outrageous horror parody has incest, necrophilia, bloody stitches, gutglobs spilling out of stomachs, impalements, severed body parts, rape, lots of nudity and sex, campy performances and bad taste dialogue. The ending is hectic, nasty and totally hilarious as all the characters end up dead in a big cartoonish pile of bloody bodies (Carlo Rambaldi did the FX).

It was filmed back-to-back with ANDY WARHOL'S DRACULA by the same director, producers and some of the same actors (both were "supervised" by Antonio Margheriti) and was originally released in an X-rated 3-D version with all kinds of gross stuff thrust right at the viewer (wish I could have seen it that way!).

Score: 6 out of 10
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Good Clean Fun!
paudie28 July 2008
This was the first of 2 films made in quick succession by Paul Morrissey in Italy in 1973. Blood for Dracula was the other.

Flesh for Frankenstein was obviously made with it's tongue firmly in it's cheek. It's a step beyond anything Hammer attempted in this genre, especially regarding gore and dodgy accents!

Udo Kier and Arno Juerging are possibly the best comic duo to hit the screens since Abbot & Costello as the Baron and faithful sidekick Otto! Whether fooling around in the lab or scouting for suitable organs they never fail to raise a smile. Kier gets all the best lines, letting us know his views on gall bladders and his plans for the new race he is ..ehm.. putting together.

Monique Van Vooren is more sinister as the Baroness, who initially appears relatively normal, in comparison to her "husband" at least. However her eccentricities become apparent as the film goes on.

Joe Dallesandro is on screen a lot but his character doesn't contribute much to the plot. Presumably his name was used to garner publicity for the film in the US.

The Frankenstein kids take after their parents and are crucial to the twist at the end of the film. The young actors playing the kids do a good job.

The actors playing the Baron's works in progress don't have much to do, even when their characters are brought to life.

Certainly the film will not be to everybody's taste. There is plenty of gore and some dodgy sex scene sound effects. The scene showing the Baron's "interest" in the female creation and her innards pushes the boundaries a bit but it is too over the top to be anything more than comical. So sit back and enjoy this piece of 70's schlock horror.
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Udo at his best
Krug Stillo19 June 2004
To begin honestly, FLESH FOR FRANKENSTEIN isn't for all tastes. However, the film and brother, BLOOD FOR Dracula, are great treats to genuine horror movie buffs. Surprisingly, for some reason the latter, as offensive as the former was not listed as a 'Video Nasty'. These two films were made back to back (a la Matrix Reloaded and Revolutions) and by the same cast and crew and exploited Andy Warhol's name for distribution.

If you have a fondness for cheesy, funny and gory decadence, then you'll love this film. Plus Udo Kier is and Arno Juerging are great in their roles. The fabulous line – To know Death Otto, you first have to f**k life in the gall bladder – was a bloomer influenced by Last Tango in Paris, but was so funny, director (Paul Morrisey) left it in.

As a passing note, I remember seeing both Ace Ventura and Blade in the cinema for the first time and loudly saying 'It's UDO!' when he appeared.
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Better than BLOOD FOR DRACULA -- Udo Kier is tops (laughs)
macabro3576 November 2003
This is clearly the superior of the two films that Paul Morrissey filmed at Cinecitta studios (Rome) during the early 1970s. It's the typical Frankenstein story with the Morrissey's spin on it.

And I suspect that it has a lot to do with Antonio Margheriti being involved since he is famous in Italian horror circles for the gore effects he brings to films. Especially the scene where the male monster (Srdjan Zelenovic) rips open his stomach sutures, exposing his organs in an act of suicide. Very anatomically correct.

Udo Kier is probably the best reason to see this film, however. His hammy acting skills are tops! His version of Frankenstein is so demented, I guess the German accent adds a lot to it. Usually it's an American or English actor who plays Frankenstein so having a real life German (speaking in English, of course) adds to the atmosphere.

And of course Joe Dallesandro's New York accent sounds totally out of place here, just as it did in BLOOD FOR DRACULA. He sounds like a male hustler hanging out in Times Square instead of an Italian stable boy

Also hideous is Monique Van Vooren as Baroness. Good gawd, the Dallesandro character must have been real hard-up in order to sleep with that old hag.

Still, it has decent atmosphere and the Criterion DVD uses a widescreen print that looks crystal along with production stills of the movie, secondary commentary track by Morrissey who has some revealing comments about the film, and some silly, pseudo-intellectual commentary by Maurice Yakowar that a trashy film like this doesn't deserve.

Worth seeing mostly for Kier's presence.

6 out of 10
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Sex, murder, art
DJ Inferno6 October 2001
Paul Morrissey´s film is probably the most unusual adaptation of the well-known Frankenstein-stuff I´ve ever seen! The story is about the mad scientist (likewise to his "Blood for Dracula"-role Udo Kier´s giving another outstanding performance, what makes him being the most culty German actor next to the inimitable Klaus Kinski!), who wants to create two artificial creatures to father some children. However, the experiment runs out of control, his sister/mother of his son and daughter starts having an affair with her servant and finally the whole plot ends in a big disaster... In comparison to James Whale´s "Frankenstein" from 1931 starring horror-icon Boris Karloff there´s nothing left from the romantic charm of the original. Director Paul Morrissey´s movie has created a bizarre and creepy scenario that contains a plenty of blood and guts, grotesque humor, hinted incest and love to dead bodies. Some calm and tender moments are in a gross contrast to the rest of the film. The end is bloody and pretty macabre. After all a very provoking, but nevertheless a really recommended mixture between splatter and art !
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anatomy 101
tsf-196219 January 2007
Warning: Spoilers
If Ken Russell, Mario Bava, and Luis Bunuel had collaborated on a film the results wouldn't have been much different from "Flesh for Frankenstein." This movie should be required viewing for all pre-med students: if they can take this, they should be ready to dissect corpses. Not since "Sin City" have I seen limbs and organs strewed around the screen so cheerfully. Unlike "Sin City," which had a kabuki, stylized quality that blunted much of the horror, "Flesh for Frankenstein" has an unabashed nastiness that doesn't pull any punches. At the same time it's beautifully photographed; like much Italian giallo (Bava, Argento) even the most horrific images are rendered eerily beautiful by the lush color and widescreen. Udo Kier plays Baron Frankenstein as a proto-Nazi obsessed with creating a master race; Monique Van Vooren is deliciously campy as his oversexed wife and Joe Dallesandro, with his flat Brooklyn accent, resembles a young Marlon Brando as Nicholas the stable boy, the only decent human being in the film. Many have commented that he was out of place in the movie, but that was the point: he was the all-American good guy lost in a world of sleek but slimy eurotrash. Particularly disturbing were the two almost-mute children, who resemble nothing so much as Wednesday and Pugsley Addams. Like Bunuel's "Viridiana" there is an unmistakable hint of incest: the Baron and Katharine are clearly brother and sister, and they seem to be grooming their children to take their place. This movie joins "Salo" and "El Topo" in the pantheon of disturbing 70s cult films.
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Now this is how you make an exploitation film!
Red-Barracuda16 October 2014
Well. we can only speculate what Mary Shelley would have made of this! By the time it came to the early 1970's there was a peculiar trend in European genre cinema for erotic/sleazy Frankenstein films. Amongst others there was The Erotic Rites of Frankenstein and Frankenstein '80 – both from 1972 – so it can be not too much of a surprise that a year later came the king of this very specific sub-genre, the one and only Flesh For Frankenstein. It was famously produced by New York Pop artist Andy Warhol, along with the similar Blood For Dracula. But it's a far cry from Warhol's other art films and unsurprisingly his creative input was pretty negligible. It was filmed in Cinecittà studios in Rome and directed by Warhol acolyte, Paul Morrissey. But irrespective of who did what and why, the main thing about this one is that it's a bona fide trash classic of the very best kind.

Its blood and guts galore and transgressive sex all the way. But it's all presented in a camp manner that simply has to be seen to be believed. The acting ranges from insanely over-the-top (Udo Kier) to hilariously under-the-top (Joe Dallesandro). What makes it so very funny is that despite the sheer ridiculousness of proceedings everybody plays it deadpan straight. We have Kier fully committed and out of control as the Nazi-like Baron who dreams of making a new master race; Dallesandro is a local shepherd stud with a hilariously out of place New York accent – he seems more like a Times Square street hustler than a character from the early 19th century; then there is Arno Juering in a bewildering performance as the eye-popping Otto, assistant to the Baron; Monique Van Vooren makes an impression too as the Baron's over-sexed wife/sister; even the couples incestual offspring are memorably creepy, the little girl being the one and only Nicoletta Elmi who appeared in dozens of Italian horror and giallo flicks in the early 70's.

Flesh For Frankenstein was also noteworthy for being one of the members of the infamous video nasty list, which of course was a selection of movies deemed criminally obscene by the British authorities back in the early 80's. It's an example of an entry from this list where you sort of understand why it caused offence in the first place. Not only does it have a healthy dose of explicit gore – including a hilariously over-the-top finale – but it is wilfully transgressive in other outrageous ways with the brother/sister-husband/wife incest plot strand and the baron's necrophiliac behaviour with his zombie creations. Of course, all of this excessive content, funny performances and insane dialogue adds up to a must-see movie for anyone with a passing interest in Euro horror from the schlockier end of the scale. On top of all of this, it's actually a quite handsome looking film, which is perhaps unsurprising given its Cinecittà origins. Suffice to say that all of this adds up to a cult film, truly worthy of the tag. Its additionally well worth seeking out its sister film Blood For Dracula, which is slightly less psychotronic but equally indispensable.
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You've never known life until you've f***-it in the gallbladder. WTF, am I watching?
ironhorse_iv12 June 2014
Warning: Spoilers
Trying to dissect, Flesh for Frankenstein is like trying to figure out the meaning of the artist, Andy Warhol's pop art, can painting. Since Andy Warhol finance the movie, and some of the actors were once party the 1960s's Factory Superstars. The movie is somewhat market as Andy Warhol's Frankenstein. The movie was directed/written by Paul Morrisey, and for the most part, all of Morrisey's ideas. If it was all Andy Warhol's ideas, the film would look more like 1963's Sleep, 1964's Blow Job or the infamous 1964's Empire. All these avant-garde films were just long shots of something being film for long periods of time. The film would be so mundane. It's only when Paul Morrisey start to help Andy Warhol's films, do we get any sense of story such in the case of 1968's Lonesome Cowboys, 1970's Heat, and others. Paul Morrissey took over the film-making chores for the Factory collective after Andy Warhol got shot in 1968, steering Warhol-branded cinema towards more mainstream, narrative-based, B-movie exploitation fare to try to make money off of this films. He even film the, then X-Rated movie, in 3D to get people to watch this explicit sexuality and violence film. The movie's nudity and violence are indeed graphic, but not X-Rated material. The film was later cut to 93 minutes for an R-rating. It's often, pair with sister movie, 1974's Blood for Dracula at the time, for double feature. The U.S. DVD releases have utilized the full uncut version, which is now unrated. If you want to check that out. While, the movie does share some of the same characters of the Mary Shelley's Frankenstein novel. The two are way, different. This movie has Baron von Frankenstein (Udo Kier) neglects his duties towards his wife/sister Katrin (Monique van Vooren), as he is obsessed with creating a perfect Serbian race to obey his commands. He does this by assembling a perfect male and female from parts of corpses to have them having intercourse. It's seem like it was trying to be a smart art-house film, that it's somewhat get lost with the slow pace delivery in exploitation grindhouse film. The way, the movie delivers this plot, is hysterical camp with horrible acting and bad special effects. The gruesomeness of the action with several disembowelments being shot from a 3D perspective was laughable. Udo Kier sounds and acts like a mix between Peter Lorre, Ren from Ren & Stimpy, and Tommy Wiseau. It's really hard to understand what he is saying. The supporting cast deliver their lines with less emotion. Even with the gross, Necrophilia and incest theme. With better actors and special effects, the doctor's sublimation of his sexual urges by his powerful urge for domination could had work. The movie really does mirror, Adolf Hitler in his lust of power. You see it through symbolism like trying to find the right nose for the creature. Like Baron, Hitler found Jews to be inadequate and often brand them with long untrusting noses. The movie has a powerful message about sexually repressed leading to social disembowelment. Indeed, maybe, Hitler lack of sex, did cause the world to go into war. It's hard to take the sex scenes, serious. Especially when his wife/sister is sucking on a guy's armpit with odd sound effects. It get weirder as the gallbladder is use as a sex object in this film. I think its hints to Andy Warhol's survival after the botch assassination. Indeed, Andy Warhol's lungs, his spleen, stomach, liver, and esophagus were hit. Hints why the lungs were on the desk in the film. While, he did survive, the effects of it would haunt him for the rest of his life. Andy Warhol was known to have recurring gallbladder problems after the shooting. Indeed, it was his delay of a check-up that might cause his death in 1987 after routine gallbladder surgery. The ending to the film is very powerful with how generations and generations would continue to repeat the same mistakes. The movie does have some good things about it, seeing how rushed it was made in production, with 1 month of shooting, it's was mostly shot beautifully with divine music score to go with it. Overall: While the movie was trying to be a smart satire of horror movies. Somebody's derped with their work, and it didn't deliver how what they really wanted. Still, it's worth watching, if you're an Andy Warhol or Frankenstein fan.
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Gorgeous erotic/Gothic film
Falconeer19 November 2013
I'm surprised that so few people have mentioned the beautiful cinematography of "Flesh for Frankenstein." Director Paul Morrisey went to great extents to model his film after the works of Luchino Visconti and other prolific Italian directors of the time. Of course to appreciate it, you must see it in it's original widescreen picture ratio. Featuring a lush, dreamlike feel that is helped along by a gorgeous and haunting music score, and top notch costumes. The gore, although extreme, possesses a kind of poetry, and i can imagine such sexually eroticized violence must have caused quite a controversy in the UK, at the time of release. Udo Kier is superb in his maniacal portrayal of Dr. Frankenstein, and the changes and additions to the Mary Shelley novel are for once, very smart and a welcome addition to an already great tale. Aside from the 1933 film "Bride of Frankenstein," this is my absolute favorite screen version of the Frankenstein monster. Excellent film!
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Trashy fun
Dave from Ottawa11 April 2012
This messy little splatter-fest was heavily censored in most markets back in the 70s and fully restored its wildly lurid visuals can still shock. The movie is all about the visuals and the splatter, and is so over the top that it gets a bit silly. The exploitation elements of the Frankenstein story - the grave-robbing, the obsessive experiments in mad science - have never been this wildly exploited and manage to straddle spoofery and shock cinema about equally well. This is not to say that this is in any way a good movie. It's almost a joke on the audience. The script is complete trash, straight out of a bad Gothic novel and probably meant to be laughed at, but played straight-faced by the film's 'actors'. The 'acting' is pretty horrible. Udo Keir is his usual creepy Eurotrash self and even moderately effective in a one-note performance, but he's the only cast member who has any business being in a period piece. Everybody else, especially Warhol protégé and gay icon Joe Dallesandro, is just too urban-contemporary (not to mention inexperienced) to pull off a 19th century look or 19th century speech. The women look decorative and shed their tops fairly often, but don't look for a romantic subplot or a strong female character because there aren't any. As straight-forward drama, this movie would get about 1/2 a star.

My rating is based on its effectiveness as an exercise in subverting audience expectations and slamming the Gothic horror genre which, after 15 straight years of Hammer and Roger Corman, had become a bit ripe.
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Often confused but plenty to enjoy
tomgillespie20022 June 2011
Possibly the oddest re-imagining of the Frankenstein story ever made, Paul Morrissey's 1973 semi-avant-garde, satirical spoof is also one of the funniest, and most gruesome. Dr. Von Frankenstein (played by B-movie favourite Udo Kier) is obsessed with creating what he believes will become a master race of Serbians who will bend at his will. He locks himself away with his assistant Otto (Arno Juerging), manufacturing hideous creations from body parts. He creates a male and a female to give birth to the first of his new race, but he is frustrated and unsatisfied with the male's sexual urges. Von Frankenstein's wife/sister, meanwhile, is following her own urges with farmhand Nicholas (Joe Dalessandro), who is coincidentally the best friend of the doctor's latest victim.

One of the strangest pairings in cinema history, director Morrissey and producer Andy Warhol have certainly created an interesting piece of horror. For all it's rather sick moments of debauchery, it is actually quite impressive artistically. Filmed in Cinecitta in Rome (one of Federico Fellini's favourite film studios), the set design for Von Frankenstein's laboratory in vast and impressive. This approach works both for and against the film, as although it gives the film a grand, often operatic feel, the film can sometimes look like it's on stage. That said, Morrissey's ability to frame a shot is often spectacular, especially in the ultra-wide dinner table scene, where Von Frankenstein introduces his wife/sister to his fresh creations.

Yet sometimes the film can feel a bit confused. It works well just a straight B-movie, with plenty of the weird and gruesome on show to satisfy horror fans (given those fans are into watching sex with torso wounds). But the film isn't really funny enough to call itself a comedy, clever enough to call itself a satire, or pretentious enough to be avant-garde. All these different themes seemed to clash together and I never felt settled with what kind of film I was supposed to be watching. If that was the point, then well done, but it still doesn't make the movie into anything special.

Saying that, I did thoroughly enjoy 90 minutes in the minds of two strange characters that had a small, if fascinating, effect on cinema.

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Fornarina24 April 2006
I really loved Flesh For Frankenstein. But I can assure you, it's not for everyone. It's kind of a love/hate movie.

Udo Kier and Joe Dallesandro stars in this. They are both gorgeous, and match perfectly together (like actors).

The dialog is so funny. I laughed so many times during the movie, and I actually constantly quoting it.

Flesh For Frankenstein is a masterpiece of this genre. Weird, but beautiful.

If you liked Flesh For Frankenstein, I can suggest you also check out Blood For Dracula. It also have Udo & Joe in it. That never fails ;)

Do yourself a favor; don't miss it!

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Seventies trash classic!
Infofreak27 April 2002
I re-watched 'Flesh For Frankenstein' last week for the first time in years, and I enjoyed it even more this time than I did the last. This movie just gets better and better as the years go by. A sensational mixture of gore, humour, horror, sex and subversion. They really DON'T make them like this anymore! Udo Kier had several movies under his belt before this including the hugely underrated 'Mark Of The Devil', but his unforgettable role here, and in Paul Morrissey's companion piece 'Blood For Dracula', sealed his fate forever as one of the living legends of trash and exploitation movies. This is absolutely essential viewing for cult/horror/black comedy fans. A true classic!
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Ed Wood On A Big Budget.
maxcellus4628 June 2008
Another piece of low grade splatter and gore all in the order to do, what? I don't know. This entry into the Frankenstein saga is negligible to say the least. Andy Warhol's Frankenstein? I'm not surprised. It's as if Ed Wood, the grade "Z" director from the 1950's had obtained a larger budget but still ended up making nothing of merit. The story, in spots, is almost actually comical and sophomoric, much like a skit on SNL. The dialog, if you can call it that, is juvenile and totally silly. The "acting" far below the junior high school level. Care to take some time out of your life and watch this? Go ahead but don't say that I didn't warn you. I'll take no responsibility.
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"Flesh for Frankenstein" - Cud 'a Used a Brain Instead.. :=8P
MooCowMo12 April 2000
"Andy Warhol's Frankenstein" is as dreadful, boring, and pretentious a slab of 70's Euro-trash as you'll ever likely to see. Think "Lady Frankenstein", only mooore dull, and without any throttling. :=8P For those of you who don't know, or remember, or would like to forget, Andy Warhol, the Prince of Pretentious Pop-Art, helped produce a string of lousy flicks in the 70's, including "Bad", "Dracula", and this gem. They're all terrible and thunderously dull, and his "Frankenstein" might be the worst of the lot. Udo Kier("Andy Warhol's Dracula", "Spermula","Suspiria" ) plays the flat, nasally-accented doctor, seeking to create the "perfect Serbian ideal" from bits and pieces of dead people. Monique Van Vooreen("Decameron", "Sugar Cookies", "Tarzan and the She-Devils")plays Katrina, the sister/wife/sex-obsessed shrew somecow related to ze Baron. Joe Dallesandro("Trash", "Emmanuelle 77", "Wild Orchid II") plays Nicholas the frowning Stableboy, trying to cowvince us that he too is European despite being handicapped with the worst Brooklyn accent this side of Rosie Perez. Very little happens; oh, there is some curiously antiseptic nudity, some cheesy, obviously fake gore, but moooch of the film is yak, yak, yak. 10 minutes into this film feels like 12 hours. The acting is amatuerish, at best, production values are positively subterranean, and Director Paul Morrissey works his usual non-flare. This cow has not seen the 3D version of this film - doubtless, it would be even mooore headache-inducing. We do get to see the two bland Euro-children get attacked by some rubber bats on strings. Such gratifying moooments, cowever, are fleeting. Somecow this feeble flick has retained the reputation of being campy, frightening, sexy, and/or outrageous, but the MooCow is here to tell ya', watching that cheesy "Hair in a Can" infomercial is far moore interesting. The MooCow says stick this "Flesh" back into the trash can for quick disposal. :=8P
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One Star For Joe, One Star For The Lizard
gftbiloxi14 May 2005
Also known as ANDY WARHOL'S FRANKENSTEIN or ANDY WARHOL PRESENTS FRANKENSTEIN, this early 1970s film is associated with Warhol only in the sense that the pop artist put up the money for the project and because it featured several actors--particularly Joe Dallesandro--who had appeared in various Warhol "factory" films. The film is a calculated effort to create a cult film, even down to deliberate courting of the X rating it received at the time of its release.

The Baron Frankenstein (Udo Kier) is married to Baroness Katrin (Monique van Vooren); they have two children and reside in the obligatory isolated castle complete with secret laboratory, where Frankenstein and his assistant (Arno Juerging) conduct their work. In this particular case, they seek to create both a male and female "monster" for breeding purposes. Unfortunately, when Frankenstein collects a shepherd's head for his male monster, he runs afoul of the shepherd's friend Nicholas (Joe Dallesandro.) The film gives every character a far-out sexual spin. The Baron and Baroness are actually brother and sister and their children are not only the result of their incestuous relationship, they themselves give every appearance of following in the family tradition. The Baron's sex life consists of unfastening the stitches of his female monster and... ahem... shall we say enjoying the pleasures of her internal organs; sexually abandoned by her husband-brother, the Baroness takes lovers (and they are spied upon by the children)--and then decides she wants to fool around the male monster. The lab assistant wants to imitate the Baron's explorations of the female monster; Nicholas rolls around naked with every woman in the village. And so on.

The film is obviously intended to be a bloody, grotesque, and erotic black comedy--but while it's certainly bloody enough and quite grotesque, it isn't greatly erotic and it's not particularly funny. It is also very sloppily made, and worse still it is as slow as molasses in January. The absolute best thing that can be said for FLESH FOR FRANKENSTEIN is that Joe Dallesandro, who can only be described as a rough-trade dream, has a scene where a lizard runs across his naked butt. One star for Joe and one star for the lizard. Recommendation: rent it before you buy it, because for most people one viewing will be more than enough.

Gary F. Taylor, aka GFT, Amazon Reviewer
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Udo vs. Joe: Volume 1
Tromafreak5 January 2009
First, there was 1931's Frankenstein, then there were decades of sequels and remakes, everything from Bride Of Frankenstein, to Frankenstein's Castle Of Freaks. Some years later, a rebellious filmmaker named Paul Morrisey would reinvent this classic, yet again, in the form of 70's exploitation, making this one of the most mean-spirited, yet poetic horror masterpieces of the 20th Century. This is Frankenstein, presented by Paul Morrissey... I mean Andy Warhol.

As usual, a mad scientist, in his European castle, married to his eccentric sister (Monique Van Vooren) is obsessed with creating life. Baron Frankenstein, along with his assistant, Otto, stalk, kidnap, kill, and mutilate anyone who has the right male parts. As it turns out, Frankenstein has everything all in order, that is, except the head of the male. The (still dead) female is ready as well. Once the male is complete, they will be brought to life, and Baron can somehow convince them to get it on, hence, creating a new race of zombies, who will obviously look to Baron as their leader. Until then, the Doctor makes it a point to "break in" the female for his male creation. Meanwhile, Joe Dallesandro is on to this guy, and his insane aspirations. Joe recognizes the head of the male creation, that's his buddy's head on that damn thing. Something must be done. So, for the first time in his Warhol career, Joe is gonna do something. Whether it works or not, that may or not be a different story. Oh well, regardless of what happens, this is still, by far Joe's finest performance. At least there's that.

This film is just as hard-hitting as it wants to be, flaunting all kinds of gore, raunchiness, more perverted tendencies than ever, even a necro scene, this is some swell horror, I tell you. Andy Warhol's name on this swell horror, as usual, was his only connection. This one is all about Udo Kier, just a golden performance, but let's not forget Paul Morrissey for creating such a pitch-black version of the fable. What really makes Flesh For Frankenstein so entertaining is the awkward, yet hilarious relationship between Udo Kier, and Arno Juerging. The things that come out of their mouths, absolutely priceless. It wasn't long before Morrissey created his own version of Dracula, a masterpiece as well, although, I like this one better. Blood For Dracula, and Flesh For Frankenstein are perfect examples of what horror should be. The legendary classic horrors of the 30's and 40's were fine, but Paul Morrissey's X-rated bastards of horror basically gives all that stuff "the finger" which makes it all the more appealing. How Morrissey could go from directing something like Women In Revolt, to this is beyond me. For more awsomeness from Udo Kier, check out Mark Of The Devil, and for more humorous indifference from Joe Dallesandro, check out Andy Warhol's Trash. As for this one, I passionately recommend this masterpiece to Horror enthusiasts who like it rough. 10/10
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I hated hated hated this movie!
I cannot recall a movie I hated as much as this one. The sex is not sexy. The shocks are not shocking. He's trying to be disturbing for the sheer sake of being disturbing. And strangely enough, it's boring. Bored! Me! Out! Of! My! Mind! The characters lack depth. They're creepy for no reason. The image of the two little kids at the end about to torture, dissect, or whatever they're about to do to the good doctor was disturbing but for no good reason. Warhol was trying to be weird for the sake of being weird. Yes, he accomplished that, but no, he did not make a movie worth watching. I hated hated hated this movie. Two decades after I first saw, the only reason I would ever consider watching it would be to reconfirm that it is the worst piece of junk I ever saw!
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Andy Warhol's Trashenstein.
BA_Harrison31 December 2013
Warning: Spoilers
Andy Warhol's Frankenstein, AKA Flesh for Frankenstein, was added to the official UK video nasty list during the 1980s, but although the film undeniably sets out to be in very poor taste, it doesn't really qualify as 'nasty', the copious sex and gore being way too tongue-in-cheek to be truly disturbing. Camp performances, lurid splatter, and soft-core shenanigans actually go to make this an outrageous piece of degenerate trash that is hard to take seriously (unless you're a Daily Mail reader or a Tory politician).

Udo Kier gives a wonderfully hammy turn as Baron Frankenstein, the accent he adopts way over-the-top so as to complement the silly dialogue, and the rest of the cast follow his lead, giving equally exaggerated performances. Among the tasteless subjects touched upon by the tacky script are eugenics, necrophilia and incest, and to add to the film's overall exploitative nature, the whole thing was shot in glorious 3D, allowing the severed limbs, spurting blood and messy viscera to dangle right in front of the viewer's face.

After an hour and a half of amazingly lurid nonsense chock full of nudity and violence, the film wraps up in a darkly humorous manner by seeing most of the characters meet their fate in a variety of gruesome ways, with the hero of the piece, womanising stable-boy Nicholas (Joe Dallesandro), left suspended helplessly from a crane in the laboratory as the baron's children, the only other survivors, slowly approach him, scalpels in hand, ready to continue their father's work.
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"Make Him Unconscious!"
Chris Haskell28 January 2012
Director, Producer, and intentions aside, movies age however they age. This is the plight of the creative team behind any work of art, and films are no exception. Watching this movie nearly 40 years after it was made, without knowing much about Andy Warhol or anything about Paul Morissey, the best I can do is review this film on what I see:

It's hilarious! I hope that was the intent. The dialog is campy and ridiculous, the acting is over the top, the subject matter is disturbing, the gore is pretty extreme, and the story is pretty far from the touching, haunting tale that Shelley originally penned.

It is a macabre comedy of power gone unchecked (as well as inbreeding, necrophilia, organs fetishes, just for starters!) with pretty great bloody special effects and super creepy children. So, you know, a family film.

Rating: 26/40
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dreamer222230 September 2004
Out of the thousand or so movies I have seen at theaters, this is the only one I have walked out on in the middle. Though I am not necessarily squeamish, I think that gore for the sake of gore is useless. I realize that it is supposed to be sexy comedy, but they could have been sexy and funny without the blood and guts.

Most copies of it now are not 3D as the original. I imagine the gore is a little weaker, but don't waste your time if you don't care for gratuitous gore. I guess if you like blood and guts, for whatever reason, then this is a good one for you. In my estimation, it has a stupid plot, bad acting and a waste of the 3D effect.
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Best horror comedy ever made
Zombie791 December 1999
I cant believe some of the negative comments i saw about this movie on the imdb,like they were only interested in the 3d or something.Ingrates!This movie is the best horror/gore/comedy ever way better than Braindead and i didnt even see it in 3d. Basically Frankenstein is trying to make the perfect "Serbian"to breed out of body parts,but he picks the wrong head a celibate wannabe monk,instead of Joe Dallesandro!Hes also married to his sister,is a necrophile,and is played by Udo kier!This movie is cool,decadent fun,even if Morriseys Blood for Dracula was better made.Its Kiers performance that makes this movie so funny,and the dialogue:"Two girls!One man!...he must be very powerful!"or the classic"to know Death Otto one must first f*** life in the Gall bladder!" if this doesnt sound funny then it is,the way Kier says it.And laugh at Joes straight out of the Bronx Yugoslavian accent.Theres some Gore(which led to an X in the US,and being banned on tape initially in the UK)but its not amazing,and some sex but with amazingly ugly women.Nevermind,the most disgusting scene has Joes armpit being sucked out by the Baronness.Yuck!Its way better than a Hammer Frankenstein and is a must see.Quality which deserves a 9!
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3-D as good as it got
mushika15 April 2001
This movie is not the worst ever. It has some "weird" feeling to it that could make it likeable to some. But I have seen MANY films in 3-D and I must say this is, by either pure chance or otherwise awesome talent, one of the few films with truly accomplished 3-D effects and shots which make the 3-D process shine.

Do not, I repeat, do not miss this film if you happen to catch a 3-D showing of it. Just don't miss it. You'll see 3-D like only 1 or 2 more films will ever show you.

But if you don't see it in 3-D, such as on video, then this film may not be for you. Acting is weird, plot is weird, dubbing is weird, music is weird, entertaining values are low and nudity is scarce.

As a film, I give it 3 out of 10. As a 3-D film, I give it 9 1/2 out of 10.

No wonder 3-D died. If this and perhaps 1 or 2 more films was as close to perfection as the 3-D process ever got.
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Cult Classic Or Just C**p?
theplatformtheatre6 March 2007
I'd heard a lot about this movie, most of which was good.

However having seen it I can only describe it as a waste of time.

The acting is just horrible, the local amateur group could have done better. The cast all seem to be in a mad staring eyes competition.

The script if there was one, is lacking in any real desire to tell the story and stuffed too breaking point with padding. The film is at least 20 minutes too long.

And whatever directorial talent Paul Morrisey possesses or possessed is not evident.

The only time the film is interesting is when it gets gory and that is at best, sub-Hammer and laughable.

Come Back Hammer - all is forgiven
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