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Mary Shelley's Frankenstein [VHS]

73 customer reviews

Price: £7.95
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Product details

  • Actors: Robert De Niro, Kenneth Branagh, Helena Bonham Carter, Tom Hulce, Aidan Quinn
  • Directors: Kenneth Branagh
  • Writers: Frank Darabont, Mary Shelley, Steph Lady
  • Producers: David Barron, David Parfitt, Francis Ford Coppola, Fred Fuchs
  • Language: English
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: Cinema Club
  • VHS Release Date: 26 Jan. 2000
  • Run Time: 118 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (73 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004CQAO
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 54,612 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

Product Description

Kenneth Branagh stars in and directs this adaptation of Mary Shelley's classic horror yarn. Obsessed with creating life, Victor Frankenstein (Branagh) harnesses the power of electricity in order to reanimate the body of a once-dead criminal (Robert De Niro). When he then witnesses the abhorrence of this reborn creature, Frankenstein is appalled and quickly abandons it. However, the creature is aware of its origins and comes looking for revenge.


Let's be honest: this should be titled Wretched Excess' Frankenstein. Swooping, wild, bloody, and energetic, this is bad moviemaking from the best, which makes it all the more loveable. Kenneth Branagh plays Victor Frankenstein, a man so obsessed with conquering death that he decides to create life. What he gets, after a protoplasmic mud wrestle, is a Mean Streets monster (Robert De Niro) that isn't particularly happy to be back from the dead or thrilled about all the stitches. Helena Bonham Carter may, at several points in this film, actually be channelling Ramtha. The supporting cast couldn't be peopled with better performers (Tom Hulce, John Cleese, Ian Holm) but they all look like they're ringside at some Ultimate Fighting competition. A must for any midnight movie collector for the shock factor alone. A hoot. --Keith Simanton --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Oliver on 4 Feb. 2010
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Overall I like this adaption of Mary Shelley's classic Frankenstein. I know that opinions are very mixed on this film but I think some of the more negative reviews are a bit unfair. Yes it's overblown and over the top in places, but it is a gothic horror story so what else is to be expected?

The performances are very good: Robert De Niro is impressive in a very different role for him (the monster). Kenneth Brannagh (who also directs the film) is perfect as Frankenstein, a young man whose frenzied ambition clouds his judgement. But it's the look and style of the film that makes it: huge, ornate and looming sets that really make the scenes come alive.

Although there have been a few liberties taken with the plot, overall it is the same. More importantly the original themes and ideas still come through (science altering humanity too much, for example).

Yes, the film is a bit overbaked, and at times can feel a bit hammy, but that doesn't stop it from being a very enjoyable film, especially if you like the book. I think Mary Shelley's novel is one of the greatest of all time and this film is a very worthy adaption. Recommended!
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By M. D. Hart VINE VOICE on 9 Nov. 2003
Format: DVD
Neopolitan ice cream; chocolate, straberry and vanilla. Which do you take first? People can often spend ridiculous amounts of time choosing things which seem trivial at best. Movies are not ice cream, this is serious business.....
.....the difficulty in writing a review is that everybody watches movies in different ways. Some are attracted to cast, some are attracted to plot, some to action, some to setting. Frankenstein is packed full of absolutely everything that a movie needs to be successful, so ask yourselves; what am I looking for here? Are you looking just to see the scar make-up on the monster? Are you watching to enjoy fantastic performances by a delightful British cast? Are you watching to enjoy the most modern screen-adaptation of a story that you read when you were young?.....
....whatever your purpose, I suggest you BUY this DVD. Branagh has given this movie everything; his cast is first-class, and the story is not only very powerful, but very moving as well. It is the single, only and last adaptation to ever capture the true torment and anguish of the Frankenstein 'Monster'. As a fellow reviewer has said, De-Niro captures the need for sympathy in the Monster very well. He shows us the need for acceptance and the desire to learn......frankly, this movie teaches us all something about our own existance. Do you remember all the times you have seen people be treated as outsiders because they do not fit the description of 'normal'? It happens every day.
If you have not seen this movie; if you have not considered it, consider it now because this movie is more than just another Frankenstein flick. This is companionship, friendship, a great love story and extrememly glamorous and well designed sets rolled into one huge cinematic offering, and it needs to be enjoyed by all. Just wait until you see the power of the will bring tears to your eyes.
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Format: DVD
In the nineties, there were a spate of films based on classic novels that incorporated the name of the writer into the title. Partly this was for copyright reasons as in the case of Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights but also it promised the viewer a faithful adaptation in contrast to the popular but bowdlerised or mutated classic adaptations. Unfortunately they proved less entertaining than the faithless earlier films, suggesting that audiences care less about fidelity than we might think.

Technically this is Kenneth Branagh's Frankenstein, with him as director and Victor Frankenstein, the scientist who after the tragic loss of his mother (Cheri Lunghi), vows to eradicate death forever. He dedicates his life to animating the dead- with as every viewer knows, monstrous results. Realising his monstrosity, Frankenstein's creation (Robert de Niro) avenges himself on the person who gave him life without a soul.

It's entertainingly gothic with a large emphasis on the Swiss setting. It is overblown but what do you expect? The other adaptations are not famed for their subtlety. The least subtle part is Victor's love for his adopted sister Elizabeth (Helena Bonham Carter). "I want you very much" he tells her lustily and in his letter of news to her which she reads to the rest of the family, he adds a raunchy `PS'. Unfortunately the affair comes off less as childhood sweethearts and more as the adulterous fling that was going on between the actors backstage. It looks like Branagh is selling himself as a heartthrob but it falls short.

Nevertheless, there are interesting elements; de Niro is sympathetic as the monster, much more in keeping with Romantic sensibilities.
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29 of 35 people found the following review helpful By Daniel Jolley HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on 21 Feb. 2004
Format: DVD
Mary Shelley's Frankenstein is a masterful motion picture. While it does take a few liberties with Shelley's classic novel, it does a wonderful job of capturing the essence of the original story, specifically the humanity of the creature. While a little over-the-top at times and surprisingly gory, this film forcefully echoes Shelley's philosophical, moral, and ethical questions, and by so doing redefines the creature in its original image. What I have always found to be the most crucial scenes in the story are here displayed in all of their troubling glory, and perhaps it is the heightened intellectual nature of this film that explains why a surprisingly large number of people find disappointment where I find stimulating triumph. There are enough horror-laden scenes to capture the attention of the general horror lover, but the real substance of this story, for those who prefer their monster to serve as a complicated, amoral representation of man himself, is ambrosia for those who are more fascinated by the questions Frankenstein raises than by the horrors he unleashes.
The inspiration for young Victor Frankenstein's obsession with conquering death is delineated pretty clearly, given its most intense emotional charge by the death of his doting mother while giving birth to his little brother. His time at university is a little rushed, however, strangely incorporating the influence of a mentor whose work Victor vows to complete; where the older doctor halted his studies out of fear, Victor will push over the brink without hesitation. Victor's lab is a bit overdone, featuring all manner of miscellaneous gizmos, vials, and wossnames that look impressive with blue bolts of electricity (not generated by lightning, by the way) pulsing through them.
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