Victor Frankenstein

 (2,813)6.01 h 49 min2015X-RayPG-13
In their attempts to aid humanity, Dr. Frankenstein (James McAvoy) and his assistant Igor (Daniel Radcliffe) create a monster that holds unimaginable terror for anyone in its path!
Paul McGuigan
Daniel RadcliffeJames McAvoyJessica Brown Findlay
English [CC]
Audio languages
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Supporting actors
Andrew ScottCharles Dance
PG-13 (Parents Strongly Cautioned)
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4.4 out of 5 stars

2813 global ratings

  1. 64% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 18% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 11% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 3% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 4% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United States

J. RoseReviewed in the United States on October 10, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
Simply excellent
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I really wasn't sure what to expect when I first heard about this film. I wanted to see it based solely on the cast -- the always brilliant James McAvoy, Daniel Radcliffe, Andrew Scott (primarily known to me as Moriarty on the BBC's Sherlock series), Mark Gatiss (Mycroft on Sherlock, and also writer and actor for Doctor Who), and the inimitable Charles Dance.

Life being what it is, I wasn't able to see the film when it first released, and subsequent negative reviews made me a little hesitant to see it after all, despite the excellent cast. I finally bit the bullet today and rented it from Prime, and I'm so, so happy that I did (and regret not ignoring the critics, and seeing it five years ago).

This is an excellent movie, managing to take the familiar plot and turn it askew just enough to make it seem fresh, new, and interesting again. Although Daniel Radcliffe will always be Harry to me, he gives a remarkable and very sympathetic performance as Igor, who is discovered by Victor Frankenstein at the circus, and subsequently rescued from his life of misery and pain. Frankenstein takes Igor under his wing after witnessing him save the life of a trapeze artist, Lorelei, displaying medical skills he had been honing in secret. Frankenstein repairs Igor's twisted body (as it happens, he's not actually a hunchback, but had suffered from a buildup of excess fluid around his spine, which Frankenstein relieves). Igor quickly becomes Frankenstein's right-hand man, and indeed becomes a new man entirely, as Frankenstein has opened for him a world in which he never dreamed he would ever take part -- that of money, society, and respect.

For me, Igor's redemption is what lies at the heart of the film, but of course it would be impossible to overlook McAvoy's towering performance as Victor Frankenstein, who is by turns brilliant, manic, depraved and captivating. The script is clever and it's an absolute pleasure to witness McAvoy deliver his lines, eyes wide and darting, with a wolfish grin that never quite leaves his expressive face (anyone who saw Split knows that this man has quickly become a master of his craft).

As for the "feel" of the film, some have basically described it as Guy Ritchie's Frankenstein, and I don't entirely disagree, but I would counter that this movie has a softer edge and bit more of an empathetic angle than most Ritchie films, which makes it all the more enjoyable to watch. In addition to having characters you actually care about, Victor Frankenstein is just a really good-looking film, with sets capturing all the grit, grime and gore of the time period combined with special effects that are perfectly executed (not too garish, not too subtle -- just right). The costumes are perfect and there's plenty of action which keeps the pace humming along. I loved every minute of it.

Don't make my mistake and let the negative reviews scare you away -- this is an excellent, very entertaining movie that I think everyone should see, not just Frankenstein (or McAvoy, or Radcliffe) fans. Get some snacks, some refreshing drinks, dim the lights, close the curtains and settle in with Victor Frankenstein. You won't regret it. :)
5 people found this helpful
JoshReviewed in the United States on July 17, 2016
5.0 out of 5 stars
A fantastic modern take on an old tale
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I am pleasantly surprised at how good I thought this movie was. When I consider all the horrible ways people try to reinvent the wheel these days it astounds me when I find anything worth seeing. This is such a case. I should not have waited as long as I did to see this film.
I will say first, it does remind me tremendously of the cult classic Hammer films as well as some part of the book. I have to admit in both cases I do not remember them entirely so it's merely a reminiscence more than a whole hearted definition.
The writing on this film is very clever and I have a lot of praise for it. From the construction of Igor's character, Frankenstein's build up, and the monster itself. I found this movie very well crafted and written. It's not perfect, and I'll get to that, but it was very clever and I enjoyed it immensely.
The acting was top notch. it's probably the best acting I've seen from Daniel Radcliffe to date, and James McAvoy is as great as always. The performances are on point for me all around and I didn't find trouble with any of it.
I have so many praises about the film, but I don't want to be to biased. There are a few problems with the film that I won't ignore. Some of the dialogue is anachronistic (I feel certain when I say that I don't think they said the word "technology" in the early 1800s and in any case it feels out of place among other words they use here and there- it's minor). Most of the time the dialogue was fine and doesn't take me out of the film, but here and there they would say words I just could not help but wonder why it was said that way. It is a minor complaint, though.
Also I found the sub plot romance between Igor and the acrobat lady to be boring. Luckily it was used very little and only, it seemed, in service of the plot (at most times to remove Igor from Frankenstein in some way) and it doesn't take up very much of the film.
Lastly, the motivation (in the film) for Frankenstein doing the things he does (being a mad scientist who wants to create life) is flimsy and feels thrown in at the end in order to justify it in some way. It felt almost like they forgot to mention it throughout the film and at one point they were in a meeting and were like "Oh, ya, we forgot to mention why Frankenstein is doing this- lets setup a short sequence quickly explaining that near the end to tie it up). It was very hamfisted and sloppy in an otherwise fantastic story.
All in all I highly recommend this movie. I don't ever say this, as much as I like movies, but in this case in particular I would love to see a sequel. It would be great if they did what Hammer did and have several adventures with Dr. Frankenstein. If they are at all as good as this one I think they would be really fun.
18 people found this helpful
joel wingReviewed in the United States on September 7, 2021
4.0 out of 5 stars
The moral man The immoral and the fanatic
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People are always looking to re-imagine classics and that’s the case with Victory Frankenstein. The movie begins with a voice over commentary by Daniel Radcliffe who plays Igor. He says that people are always looking at the monster but in this story man is the monster. He was referring to James McAvoy who plays Frankenstein. That comes from the original story whose theme was that when man plays with nature man will suffer the consequences.

Instead of the cloying side kick Radcliffe plays Igor as a man who was abused but who always had his brain to maintain his humanity. McAvoy on the other hand has a god complex when he believes he can create life. The two come into conflict over their experiments. The third main character is Andrew Scott a police detective who believes he is an agent of God meant to stop science. Thus you have the moral man Radcliffe, the immoral man McAvoy, and the fanatic Scott.

Even if you miss the symbolism the story is a good bit of sci-fi about the mad scientist.
One person found this helpful
NevadadadReviewed in the United States on September 29, 2017
5.0 out of 5 stars
Stands with "Mary Shelly's Frankenstein"
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He's got a lot of work ahead of him, shedding "Harry Potter" and leaving that character behind, and he knows it. The good news is that Radcliffe is up to the task. I've seen him in a few things, now and I haven't once stopped the disc and said, "Hold on! This is just stupid! Why the hell is Harry Potter in this ridiculous scenario? Can't he just wave his wand and yell, 'Expelliarmus!', or something?" He's doing a fantastic job and so is McAvoy! My Goodness! I haven't seen a performance like the one he put on in "Split" since Ed Norton in "Primal Fear"! The story itself is very good at rehashing the same, tired story from a fresh point of view with a few new twists and finding its own way to create tension. At one point, its even admitted that "you know the story..." in the narration, but effects, which are very well done and never seem forced or gratuitous keep you watching and so does the cinematography. All-in-all, maybe the best since "Mary Shelly's Frankenstein".
10 people found this helpful
Kim WhittemoreReviewed in the United States on August 16, 2020
4.0 out of 5 stars
As Igor says, "You know the story..."
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Yes, we do know the story. We've seen countless incarnations based on Shelley's 1818 novel ("Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus"). Audiences will always be drawn to films featuring this story, just as they have since the 1910 short produced by Edison Studios. Most of us have seen the creature played by the legendary Boris Karloff in the 1930s, and we've seen the monster in all kinds of subsequent situations -- one of the most memorable being the 1935 film in which the creature was rejected by his custom made, spare-parts bride (Elsa Lanchester). We've seen him meet Abbott and Costello, and we've seen him matched against his peers: Count Dracula, The Mummy, and The Wolfman. All that's missing is a Frankenstein reality show.

So, what's new about this incarnation? Well, to begin with, the actors in this film are a pleasure to watch -- from the irrepressible Victor Frankenstein (James McAvoy) to the rapidly evolved, medical genius in his own right, Igor Straussman (Daniel Radcliffe) to the grimly persistent Inspector Turpin (Andrew Scott). They were all magnetic. The set design was also beautiful -- and Victorian England was displayed in everything from furnishings to fabrics to city views to laboratory equipment. Everything is in place for a great viewing.

Does it deliver? Well, that depends on what you're expecting to see. It's clear (even from the trailer) that this movie will never leave the footprints left by haunting genre films like "Interview with a Vampire" or "Bram Stoker's Dracula" -- two films that really revolutionized the tale of the vampire (and films that belong in a home movie collection). But, I don't think that's what the objective was. In it's own category, I think it hit the mark. I wasn't really interested in a deep examination of pathos or ethos -- we've been there, haven't we? This was a visual thing for me, and I got to see a nicely designed period piece with some visual effects that supported the basic story (and a few hat tips to elements found in earlier incarnations, if not the novel itself). I especially liked the comedic injections that gave life to a more high-spirited and witty Frankenstein than the typically dour scientist of yesteryear. Particularly effective was the use of the visual effect depicting the skeletal and organ overlays seen in Frankenstein's (and Igor's) mind's eye when he looked at man or beast. The Igor story line, as has been mentioned, was completely unbelievable (and physically impossible), but in a story that is built on pure fantasy, who cares? As for the creature himself -- Prometheus? I couldn't wait for the reveal, and in my opinion, it did not disappoint. I would have loved to see him wreaking havoc on an entire population as opposed to a smattering of people gathered at the castle to witness his birth, but it was a prequel of sorts, and Prometheus makes his one appearance in the final act.

So, all in all, a big studio release with a big budget breathes some fresh life into a literary creation that's been around for over 200 years, and given the subject matter, that's enough for me. As the years go by, Hollywood will use the Frankenstein vehicle over and over to showcase its latest and greatest leading men, and just as in this case, they'll be plenty of viewers around to judge the future outcomes.
One person found this helpful
Mark C. ScerpellaReviewed in the United States on June 5, 2019
4.0 out of 5 stars
While not great,it's a unique take on Mary Shelley's famous story.
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It's no secret that,in the annals of the horror movie,Mary Shelley's iconic tale of tampering in God's domain was left behind decades ago,replaced by the likes of demonic possession and the "slasher flick". If anything,this has caused screenwriters and filmmakers who choose to tell the tale to move beyond the archetypes established by the James Whale version and find new ways to bring it to the big screen.
Here,our protagonists are a nameless circus hunchback who eventually becomes known as Igor Straussman (Daniel Radcliffe),after being rescued from a lifetime of cruelty by Doctor Victor Frankenstein (James McAvoy),when the latter is impressed by the former's demonstration of his knowledge of human anatomy despite the obvious lack of schooling. Once immersed in the doctor's world,Igor is convinced to join him in his campaign to further his vision of biological medicine...which,of course,includes reanimating the dead. Igor's attention is somewhat diverted by his concern for the well-being of Lorelei (Jessica Brown Findlay),a beautiful circus aerialist saved from death by his anatomical knowledge. Ultimately,it is she who saves Igor from the dire circumstances that result from his partnership with the dangerously obsessed doctor.
Naturally,this story eventually leads to the creation of a reanimated dead man,whose tragic results are a foregone conclusion. Director Paul McGuigan and screenwriter Max Landis do bring a few new elements to this timeworn tale,making it a reasonably entertaining film. While there may be better versions of this story,I found this one to be quite compelling.
2 people found this helpful
Katherine.KleyerReviewed in the United States on December 4, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
Great psychoanalysis of a tale we all know. There are no monsters.
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Plot-wise, it's a little fantastical. People have talents and knowledge that doesn't make sense, but is necessary to drive the plot.
Great psychology in the character development. The actors really pull it off. There are some scenes where dialogue isn't needed. The actors just convey with looks and gestures and you get it. Classic toxic relationship between an empath and a narcissist. They show you how the two became what they are, how they feed off and starve the other... Relationships are just as addictive, if not more so than any drug.

This puts a different spin on the classic tale. No one's crazy or evil. People are people. We all overcome abuse and adversity, regardless of our backgrounds. Events from life will shape psyches, affecting who we become and how we respond. This exploration is where the movie excels.
One person found this helpful
Fryzilla: King of the MonstersReviewed in the United States on January 19, 2020
3.0 out of 5 stars
Memoirs of an Igor
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I came for the Frankenmonkey, but I stayed for the great acting duo of Daniel Radcliffe as the kind-hearted misfit Igor and James McAvoy as the eccentric Dr. Frankenstein. While the movie isn't perfect (especially with a dumb-looking monster in the end), it does have great acting, some good visual effects, and amazing set designs. It also does a great job at changing the dynamic of Frankenstein and Igor from originally as scientist and assistant to two equally brilliant scientific minds who are both good friends, although I would have gone without a third act breakup. Overall this movie was an ok reimagining of the classic story of Frankenstein, although it's mostly a prequel from Igor's point of view.
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