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A partial return to form for the Frankenstein series...,
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This review is from: Frankenstein Created Woman [DVD]  (DVD)
A decade on from their masterful The Revenge of Frankenstein, Terence Fisher and Peter Cushing teamed up again for Hammer's macabre Frankenstein Created Woman. A reasonable return to form for the series after the dire Cushing / Freddie Francis effort The Evil of Frankenstein, this has Cushing back at his best, portraying Frankenstein as a complex, cold-hearted, yet curiously sympathetic outcast. Now reduced to penury after his repeated hounding and exile in previous films, Baron Victor Frankenstein lives quietly in a little European village, arousing the suspicion of the locals, but curiously, not their persecution. When his young assistant is executed for a crime he didn't commit, the boy's crippled girlfriend drowns herself with grief, at which point Victor decides to transplant not the brain, but the soul of his assistant into the girl's reconstructed body...
Frankenstein Created Woman is now regarded as one of the best Hammer films, though it has always left me rather cold. Though fresh ideas (soul rather than brain transplants, a female 'creation') help to shake up the by-now-familiar plot, the movie is curiously devoid of action, save the three climactic murders. The film is saved by its performances, with Cushing's Frankenstein at his most likeable, whilst the gorgeous Susan Denberg makes a strong female lead (a rarity for a Hammer film from this period). Once again though, it seems that Hammer films are suffering in the struggle for release as respectable DVDs. Not only is this latest Studio Canal release just as free of extras as the previous Warner effort, it seems those who designed the sleeve can't even get the name of the film right; it's Frankenstein Created WOMAN, not WOMEN.