Hollywood has created another monster with “Victor Frankenstein,” according to critics — just 22 months after Lionsgate’s “I, Frankenstein,” another film about the inhuman creature, bombed at the box office.
Critics are calling the horror film a “bloody mess” and “deeply, deeply unnecessary.” TheWrap’s Alonso Duralde agrees, writing, “The movie feels as stitched together as one of the title character’s monsters, flirting with horror, action, comedy and even romance, but committing to nothing but loud messiness.”
Currently, the film, which is told from Igor’s (Radcliffe) perspective and showcases the young assistant’s dark origins, holds a 10 percent Rotten Tomato score a day ahead of the movie’s release.
See seven of the worst reviews below.
Glenn Kenny, RogerEbert.com:
“For all the enthusiasm brought to bear, and again, despite the brio of the young cast (McAvoy makes his ‘let’s create life’ speeches with spittle-projecting eagerness), the movie’s a bloody mess, and a needlessly loud one as well.”
Matt Pais, RedEye:
“Seriously, another Frankenstein movie … And one that’s sort of positioned as an origin story of the legendary, deeply misguided doctor’s trusty assistant, but is still named after the mad scientist and adds very little to what has been tackled periodically on screen for only the past 100 years? Sorry, I’m getting upset. The movie’s not awful. Just deeply, deeply unnecessary … What exec thought this was what people wanted around the holidays? Or ever.”
Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle:
“Much of ‘Victor Frankenstein’ details Victor’s attempts to do his experiments and the efforts of the police to curtail his efforts. In this scenario, where can the audience locate a rooting interest? What is it that we should hope to see? Rooting for Frankenstein is the same as rooting for disaster. To root for the police is to hope nothing will happen. That’s not much for an audience to hold on to.”
Nick Schrager, IndieWire:
“‘Victor Frankenstein’ has fallen to pieces, ditching any pretense toward making this Igor’s take on the story — during the chaotic finale, the assistant is rendered a mere passive on-looker — and compelling its over-acting leads to amplify their histrionics to cartoonish levels. And as for horror? Aside from a few woeful jump scares, the film is too consumed with showcasing dreary digital effects, and photographing its players amidst gears and gadgets and funhouse-mirror glass, to bother crafting suspense. Deformed from the start, it confirms the very thing argued by its narrative — namely, the folly of unwarranted resurrections.”
Kyle Smith, New York Post:
“There’s something alarming in ‘Victor Frankenstein’ but it isn’t the reanimated bits of corpse that make up a monster. It’s James McAvoy‘s acting: It’s like he’s been locked in a castle with a lot of bad Nicolas Cage movies.”
Peter Howell, Toronto Star:
“‘It’s alive!’ James McAvoy‘s title monster maker cries in ‘Victor Frankenstein’ — but the film is DOA. This beastly bucket of swill co-stars Daniel Radcliffe as Frankenstein’s dutiful assistant Igor, who is given a romantic subplot involving Jessica Brown Findlay in the misbegotten script by Max Landis (‘Chronicle’). Paul McGuigan directs, but apparently without a clue as to what kind of story he’s trying to tell.”
Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune:
“Having recently revamped Peter Pan, James Bond, Dracula, George Smiley and Sherlock Holmes, it’s time to reanimate ‘Victor Frankenstein.’ Disappointingly, electrifying this dead body won’t jolt it back to life. Despite director Paul McGuigan’s eccentric attempt to add a fresh vision to the story combining melodrama and black comedy, he has, in effect, written a chapter of ‘Mary Shelley for Dummies.'”
“Victor Frankenstein” opens in theaters on Wednesday.