After he is rescued from the circus by an eccentric scientist, a
hunchback dons the name of Igor and becomes the scientist's assistant.
Victor Frankenstein (2015)
Directed by Paul McGuigan
Written by Max Landis
Starring Daniel Radcliffe, James McAvoy, Jessica Brown Findlay, Andrew Scott, Callum Turner, Freddie Fox, Charles Dance
Based on characters created by Mary Shelley
Victor Frankenstein is a film that I believed would've fared better with a title change. The film is hardly the story of Dr. Frankenstein. It's the story of Igor, and how he watched Frankenstein's experiments push him further and further away from reality. Honestly, I didn't think this film was half bad. It certainly didn't warrant the huge critical backlash it received, nor did it earn the 25% Rotten Tomatoes score. It may not be the definitive Frankenstein adaptation, but it dares to try something different and I view it as a success.
This film stands solely on the performances of Daniel Radcliffe as Igor and James McAvoy as Dr. Victor Frankenstein. Without them, I would've lost interest almost immediately. They have terrific chemistry and do a great job of portraying the lighter side of two of fiction's darkest characters. Apart from them, there are no surprises. We all know the story of Frankenstein. The man who made a monster and became one in return. I expected a predictable plot, but I'd hoped for some creative licenses to be taken. For example, the last half-hour was dreadful. It basically amounted to Victor creating the Monster and then he and Igor trying to stab it to death with whatever happened to be in the lab. An entire film's worth of buildup vanished in exchange for a poor excuse for a fight scene.
I wish that the film had instead been treated like a biopic, starting from Victor's early childhood and the death of his older brother Henry. Considering his father was played by the great Charles Dance in a glorified cameo, this would've been a great story to watch. Though I did enjoy Victor Frankenstein for the most part, I wish it had been better. With the star power behind it and the incredible source material, there's no reason this shouldn't have been a tremendous film.