Wednesday, August 7, 2013
Frankenstein's Army Is A Stroke Of Genius
RUN TIME- 85 MINS
WRITER(S)- CHRIS W. MITCHELL, RICHARD RAAPHORST, MARY SHELLEY AND MIGUEL TEJADA-FLORES
STARRING- KAREL RODEN, JOSHUA SASSE AND ROBERT GWILYM
DIRECTOR- RICHARD RAAPHORST
Synopsis taken from IMDb
Toward the ending of WWII, Russian soldiers pushing into eastern Germany stumble across a secret Nazi lab, one that has unearthed and begun experimenting with the journal of one Dr. Victor Frankenstein. The scientists have used the legendary Frankenstein's work to assemble an army of super-soldiers stitched together from the body parts of their fallen comrades -- a desperate Hitler's last ghastly ploy to escape defeat.
The only thing that made want to see this film more than I already did, is the uproar of positive reviews/write-ups that it's gotten. Offhand I figured it was just going to be visually fun to watch, I didn't expect it to actually be a very good film. However, now I see what all the hype is about!
Instantly, I saw that there wasn't going to be any cheese, just dark humor, so that stepped it up a peg for me. One thing that ruins movies most times than not, is making ridiculous jokes with bad dialog for the sake of achieving a small laugh. Not the case with this one.
The first 20 minutes we get to spend time with the Russian soldiers as they push through eastern Germany, aside from that, there's no buildup. Because it's shot in real time, we're thrown into the situation along with them as they find the secret Nazi lab. I didn't mind the lack of character development, having some is always a golden key, but this movie does fine without it. And I think the reason is, because the viewer is so invested in what's going on with the story, the characters actually are part of the background. The story is at the forefront. This works because it's a very original story, and completely mad!
Of course, I think the best part of the film is when we start to see some real action and interaction between the Russian's and the Nazi soldiers scrapped together from the crazy ideals of Frankenstein's journal. Above how cool and interesting the monsters/soldiers look, the best thing is that it actually manages to get a couple quick scares out of you. It's more creepy than scary, but the fact that this concept can get a reaction out of me like that says something positive. But it's more cool and innovative than anything else.
The Nazi soldiers looked badass! Not only are they creative and inventive, but they're ferocious! Just looking at them and the way they move makes the movie go up a few notches. But to have these monstrosities amidst the chaos is just pure genius. It really gives you a sense of fear and urgency, that drives home the point of how this is, point blank, a solid horror film.
The conclusion ended a bit more abruptly than I had expected, or wanted. I was expecting a bit more of a BANG with the ending, and that just didn't happen. Not to say that the ending isn't good, it's fine. I just would have preferred a more in your face approach to an ending. But in a way, we all have an idea of how this film would end before we go into it, seeing as it takes place during WWII.