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Mary Shelley's Frankenstein

  R HD Closed Captioning

Kenneth Branagh

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Plot Summary

Robert De Niro, Kenneth Branagh, Tom Hulce, Helena Bonham Carter, Aidan Quinn, Ian Holm and John Cleese star in Branagh's acclaimed adaptation of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. True to the original, here is the story of a young doctor whose obsession with death leads him to create a life. But his "creature" crafted from the bodies of convicts and the brain of a brilliant scientist, is a hideous mockery of humanity. And when the creature realizes he will never be accepted by men, he seeks revenge on Dr. Frankenstein and his family. An inspired adaptation that's emotionally complex and truly terrifying.

Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews


  • Reviews Counted: 41
  • Fresh: 16
  • Rotten: 25
  • Average Rating: 5.5/10

Top Critics' Reviews

Rotten: Mr. Branagh is in over his head. He displays neither the technical finesse to handle a big, visually ambitious film nor the insight to develop a stirring new version of this story. – Janet Maslin, New York Times, Jan 13, 2014

Rotten: Branagh doesn't evoke terror, only repulsion. – Richard Schickel, TIME Magazine, Jun 24, 2010

Rotten: Kenneth Branagh has indeed created a monster, but not the kind he originally envisioned. – Variety Staff, Variety, Jan 13, 2014

Fresh: Something more substantial than Hollywood's typical, fitfully entertaining fluff. – James Berardinelli, ReelViews, Jun 10, 2008

Read More About This Movie On Rotten Tomatoes

Customer Reviews

Faithful to the Original

This adaptation of Frankenstein is significant in its faithfulness to Shelley's original story (hence the title). Lovers of the book will find much here that is familiar, and it is also a captivating movie in its own right.

Great Take On Frankenstein

Following the same gothic formula that was successful for Bram Stoker's Dracula, Kenneth Branagh's Frankenstein has developed a cult following over the years. The gothic atmosphere, music, and cast helps to make the film enjoyable and thrilling. Branagh plays Victor Frankenstein, the main character who re-creates life from dead body parts only to have it haunt him and destroy his life. Branagh's performance is great at times and is at his best towards the end. Helena Bonham Carter is Elizabeth, the love of Victor's life who tries to discover what he created only to have it find her. Carter is great in the film and has a great climax performance. De Niro stars as the Victor's creation, and is easily the best cast member of the film. Mary Shelley's Frankenstein isn't a great film and it isn't a bad film. It's worth a viewing or two.

Mary Shelley

In the traditional Branagh styling, Mary Shelley's Frankenstein is over the top. Which is not necessarily bad. The costumes are lovely, the special effects are remarkable, and the acting is generally quite good considering some of the ridiculous lines that were to be said. Robert De Niro was a very interesting choice for Frankenstein... he did very good but always felt a little out of place. Kenneth Branagh was successful as Frankenstein and, as always, manages to find the time to take his shirt off. Elizabeth was much more prominent and independent than in the novel. In the hands of a lesser actress the role of Elizabeth would seem gratuitous and unnecessary, but Helena Bonham Carter made her worth watching and more importantly worth caring for. Even with the all star cast, this movie can't overcome its cheesy script and plot. Nonetheless, check it out. There are some heart dropping sequences and real flames.... and a tree gets struck by lighting and it looks very cool. Avoid the birth scene.