Hollywood is obsessed with creating contemporary adaptations of legends and horror stories. According to List Challenges, there are 55 Frankenstein themed movies, which most people would agree seems rather excessive. Frankenstein has proven to be a popular story to be retold, beginning with Mary Shelley’s original plot in 1818 which inspired the first short film in 1910, followed by numerous other revivals throughout the 20th century.
Since then, Frankenstein and his monster have been reinterpreted into television series like Penny Dreadful, which aired on Showtime, as well as games like Frankenstein that is currently hosted by the slots provider Pocketfruity. But it’s Shelley’s tale that continues to inspire filmmakers, prompting recent features such as this particular movie in question. 2015 reigned in a couple of these monster-themed films, though most people fell for the hype around Victor Frankenstein and never realized that there was another movie released a month prior.
While Paul McGuigan’s adaptation fell short of expectations due to cheesy lines and disconnected scenes, Bernard Rose’s film Frankenstein did not disappoint. The premise as a present-day Frankenstein tale was a promise from the get-go, revolving around a failed human experiment by married scientists that resulted in the legendary monster.
Told through the eyes of Adam, Rose humanized the being and allowed viewers to sympathize with the monster. He created Adam to be as complex as any human, capable of emotions and feelings like love. Vastly different from previous remakes that painted the man-made creation as a savage, you’re shown that he is merely a product of his environment.
Adam’s character is believable and goes through human experiences that in one way or another, we can relate to. It’s an age-old tale that highlights modern-day issues—perhaps one of the most realistic depictions of the Frankenstein story yet.
More violent in comparison to past films, Frankenstein wasn’t made for the faint-hearted. It received mixed reviews across the critics, averaging 5.1 stars on IMDb and scoring even lower on Rotten Tomatoes. Violence played into the unfavorable reviews, but the film was largely well received as a laudable addition to the horror genre.
Rose did Shelley’s story justice while putting his own unique spin on the oft-told narrative. It’s a hauntingly beautiful retelling that would appease any fan of horror flicks, and proof that not every movie about the monster is as superficial as Victor Frankenstein. But as for any future remakes, maybe it’s about time the storyline is retired altogether.