Writer: Donald F Glut (Screenplay)
Starring: John Blyth Barrymore, Buddy Daniels Friedman, Jim Tavare, Tatiana DeKhtyar, Len Wein, Jamisin Matthews
Plot: Based upon four of writer-director Donald F. Glut’s short stories published in his book TALES OF FRANKENSTEIN: “My Creation, My Beloved” (a deformed descendant of Victor Frankenstein creates the perfect man and woman), “Crawler from the Grave” (another Frankenstein descendant’s disembodied, plague-infected arm returns from the grave for revenge), “Madhouse of Death” (a private detective winds up in an old dark house filled with loonies…and a gorilla) and “Dr. Karnstein’s Creation” (a mad doctor creates a monster in vampire-haunted Transylvania – with gruesomely unexpected results).
Runtime: 1 Hour 52 Minutes
There may be spoilers in the rest of the review
Verdict: Fun Anthology
Story: Tales of Frankenstein starts as we learn that we are going to be learning about four different relatives of Victor Frankenstein, each chapter will be their own story, which we will get into more details below.
Thoughts on Tales of Frankenstein
My Creation, My Beloved – This story follows Gregore Frankenstein (Friedman) the cousin to Victor, he doesn’t want to follow in his cousin’s footsteps, but when is love dies, he can’t help by go down the same path, when he tries to bring her back to life. This is a simple and effective introduction to what we are going to be going through, it does enough to be original, while borrow the basics from the original story, showing how love can drive the most brilliant minded people to make rash decisions.
Crawler from the Grave – Vincent (Barrymore) is a neighbour to Helmut (Wein) who uses his brains to try and cure himself, Vincent wants the jewellery that Helmut has, wanting to buy it after he passes, he soon learns the price of chasing from the dead. This one plays into the ideas that greed will guide people to make mistakes they will always end up paying for, the moments off effects are weaker here which does take away from elements of the ideas in the story.
Madhouse of Death – We head to LA here, with Jack Anvil (Matthews) who breaks down outside the home of Dr Mortality (Novak), who has bigger plans for Jack, told in a noir style with Jack being a private investigator, it is left to see if he is the one Mortality is waiting for. The noir style to this one does make it standout from the rest, which does work, it does feel like one that could be a full movie too, which is what we focus on when it comes to the short stories.
Dr Karnstein’s Creation – The final chapter takes us to Dr Karnstein (Tavare) in Transylvania who recruits Carl (Hoffmeister) to be his assistant so that he can continue the work of Victor Frankenstein, he will learn that his obsession will be more difficult that he could ever imagine. This chapter brings us the most comedy with how everything unfold which brings us to a nice conclusion to this anthology.
Comedy/Horror – The comedy seems to be strongest in one of the four stories, it doesn’t come as thick and fat as you would hope though, the horror continues the ideas of what Frankenstein’s legacy once gave us, seeing how his family tree was involved with similar stories.
Settings – Each setting is a different time in history between when the first Frankenstein story happened, right up to the mid 1950s, this does help make each story feel unique even with the connections to the bigger picture.
Special Effects – The effects here are a mixed bag because most of the Dr Karnstein effects looking the best, while Crawling from the Grave seems to have weaker effects throughout.
Final Thoughts – This is a nice fun series of Frankenstein stories, showing how the legacy could easily continue without just being another remake.
Overall: Frankenstein Anthology films to enjoy.