Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Frankenstein and the Monster From Hell (1973)

As I start 2014, it is nice to reflect on the past, while looking forward. 2013 was a busy year, both at the institute and here at the house. The daughters are growing faster than one could imagine and they are becoming independant thinkers, I am so proud of all four of them. I started school again in a creative writing program and Bren saw an increase of freelance design. All positives. Work here at the Ringmaster's Realm did hit a slow period, but once I worked through that, it was full speed ahead; the same as it was for Steelers 101. Here's to hoping 2014 brings the same satisfaction. For my first review of 2014, I am going to do the last Frankenstein entry from historic Hammer Studios, Frankenstein and the Monster From Hell. 

Plot/ Baron Frankenstein is hiding out in an insane asylum, so that he may continue his experiments with reanimating the dead, along with inmate Dr. Helder, who has been institutionalized for conducting such experiments.

This is an interesting film to watch in many ways. It certainly is not the best Frankenstein film in the Hammer catalogue, but it is both entertaining and graphic. Actually, it may be the bloodiest film in the series.  Peter Cushing again proves to be one of the best and provides another great turn as the Baron. There are solid performances, outstanding scenery, and blood throughout, not to mention an awesome brain experiment scene. Unfortunately, while entertaining, there are some flaws that cannot be overlooked. The make-up effects of the creature do not do the film justice, as it looks more like an animal than a human. Yes, that may have some merit, but it definitely feels more Planet of the Apes than Frankenstein. On top of that, the atmosphere  and scripting never  reach their potential, leaving a viewer wanting more.  In the end, this one is campy and entertaining, but could have been much more memorable. If you are fan of Hammer Studios or Peter Cushing, you should definitely check it out. It is worth watching at least once. 

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