22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
A B-Movie Extravaganza Featuring Plenty Of Gore, Macabre Humor, And A Terrific Array Of Monsters,
This review is from: Frankenstein's Army [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
When you're going to make a movie and call it "Frankenstein's Army," you'd better be willing to serve up something that lives up to the title! Director Richard Raaphorst draws from the real life experimentation conducted by Nazi scientists to create a movie that goes bat guano crazy with the idea. And I mean that as a huge compliment. The film may not have an intricate plot or complex characterizations, but I doubt anyone approaching "Frankenstein's Army" is expecting a thoughtful drama. What it does present is an elaborate and macabre world of engineered monsters that are both scary and funny. It is like a vision of steampunk technology combined with biological carnage, and it makes this film a visceral sensation. The movie combines over-the-top acting, unsettling visuals, and deranged humor to create something that feels startlingly fresh. Perhaps this isn't a great movie, but I admire the thought and creativity that went behind these fantastic monsters. And at the end of the day, if you fall for these creations than you'll get swept up into the experience. If you don't like the "army," you won't like the movie. Simple as that.
The film employs the increasingly tiring "found footage" style of filmmaking, meaning that one of the characters is holding the camera that records the action. Although this is a less expensive way to shoot a movie, it can become problematic when the camera needs to film a sequence where it doesn't make sense for the character to stand there and do so. Surprisingly, "Frankenstein's Army" actually handles this tricky technique quite well. The film is a historical document following a band of Russian soldiers as they traverse across German territory in World War II. Because the footage is supposed to be older and shot on a handheld apparatus, the movie has a choppy and old time film feeling that serves the piece well. As the movie opens, we get a brief introduction to the soldiers but no one is really distinguished with any clarity. Responding to a Russian distress signal and with their radio blocked, they get to a desolate camp that will hold many unpleasant surprises.
At this point, hidden agendas are revealed and a mad scientist and his unearthly creations are discovered. It may have taken a little long to get to this point, but now the action starts to kick in. As our motley crew of soldiers fight an strange array of unexpected foe, the film has plenty of gore, a few quite scary encounters, and a firm sense of the preposterous. Ultimately, we will meet Dr Frankenstein and he is played with demented glee by Karel Roden. While much of the picture can be horrifying, the final scenes are wickedly funny instead. I thought the movie looked like fun and it is. If you go in with moderate expectations, this B-movie extravaganza serves up plenty of twisted delights. As I said, "Frankenstein's Army" may not have the most sophisticated plot line but it scores where it counts the most! The monsters are great, scary, funny, and (most of all) memorable. KGHarris, 8/13.
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Initial post: Oct 9, 2013 5:11:03 AM PDT
Gary Fleisher says:
Though this review is rather long it really helps someone who has no idea about this film to have a much better idea if they might like it or not before ordering it.
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