I, Frankenstein – movie review

iFrankensteinGrade: C

What I found most surprising about this movie is the quality of the acting. Usually movies like this pluck their main characters from the B-list. But somehow the creators managed to land Aaron Eckhart, who is an outstandingly good, but underrated, actor. Eckhart brings gravitas to the character of Frankenstein that the story depends on. Without him this movie might have been rubbish.

More surprising yet they got Bill Nighy as the lead for the evil demons. Nighy’s did a fantastic job of showing a character that can just barely manage to keep a seething anger under control. It feels like his character wants to smash everything to bits but he knows that won’t be an effective strategy so he keeps his cool and pursues a more complex plan of attack. Bill Nighy is one of my favorite actors because he has such an astonishing range.

The rest of the cast is pretty much the B-listers but that doesn’t mean they can’t act. Jai Courtney, John McClane’s son in “A Good Day To Die Hard”, Miranda Otto, Eowyn from “Lord of the Rings”, and Yvonne Strahovski, from the TV series “Chuck”, all do a fine job with what they have to work with.

Where the movie suffers is in the story telling. First, they only have 80 minutes of actual movie time to tell a story that involves a fairly rich and detailed universe. Or at least it could have if they had made the movie an hour longer and given the audience a chance to see the universe they created instead of spoon feeding every little detail with heavy handed exposition. Lets put it this way, if Peter Jackson had directed this movie it would have been a trilogy with nine-plus hours of screen time.

This movie was better than I expected, because I was expecting it to be rubbish, but ultimately is unsatisfying because of the heavy handed story telling and brevity.

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