"I, Frankenstein," starring Aaron Eckhart in the title role, didn't exactly set fire to the box office this past weekend, but it did light a fire in some critics to write funny hatchet-jobs. Below, a roundup of the best worst reviews of "I, Frankenstein."
3:28 p.m.: Aaron Eckhart just said the line, “I am not human, nor gargoyle, nor demon,” with a straight face.
3:30 p.m.: There are three teenagers sitting across the theater from me involved in a loud conversation. It really is distracting, but I don’t want to be the person who yells, “Hey, fellas, can you be quiet? I’m really trying to pay attention to ‘I, Frankenstein.’”
3:31 p.m.: I think they just realized that I’m taking notes.
3:31 p.m.: They are all laughing.
3:31 p.m.: I’m going to stop writing things down for a little while.
3:40 p.m.: I wish I would have kept count of how many people burst into flames in this movie.
3:41 p.m.: I think the premise of this movie works better as a comedy.
This movie is a corpse in desperate need of reanimation.
It would be premature to suggest this without consulting the archives, but “I, Frankenstein” might very well set some kind of record for the most expository dialogue in a single feature film, with almost every spoken exchange either relaying a convoluted backstory, outlining a nefarious scheme, or describing the actions currently taking place onscreen. In fact, it isn’t until approximately 92 minutes into the film’s 93-minute running time that it even cracks its first joke, when the end credits offer “special thanks” to Mary Shelley. Utterly witless, listless, sparkless and senseless, this supernatural actioner makes one long for the comparative sophistication of the conceptually identical “Underworld” franchise (with which it shares producers and a writer).
Conspiracy theorists might posit that January is when the movie industry deliberately sours audiences so that summer's merest uptick in popcorn entertainment value feels like a drought vanquished. Exhibit A in this argument could be the gray, dumb, bolt in the neck called "I, Frankenstein."
...What's left are shots swooping in and swooping out, and digitized figures in pre-programmed combat, with Mary Shelley thanked in the credits — for not rising from the dead to protest, one presumes.
Eckhart plays Frankenstein’s monster in a monotonous, teeth-gritting mode, as if someone had one gun on him and another on his family.
This latest effort, from the creators of the Underworld series, is mainly notable for the fact that its titular character, as played by Aaron Eckhart, is really, really ripped. If People magazine had existed in the 19th century, he surely would have been feted as the sexiest undead man alive.