Sunday, April 14, 2013

FRANKENSTEIN'S ARMY (2013) movie review

Frankenstein's Army (2013) d. Raaphorst, Richard (Netherlands)

In the waning days of WWII, a ragtag team of Russian soldiers taking the fight to the Nazis’ home turf are documented by a propaganda filmmaker to record the triumph. As they close in on their quarry, the grunts encounter a series of strange biomechanical corpses, indicating someone’s been tinkering in terrain best left to the Big Guy Upstairs.

True, it’s another “found footage” feature amidst a field lousy with them, but Raaphorst’s novel concept succeeds in doing something inspired with the motif. Seems a descendant of the infamous scientist has been recruited by the Reich to create a fighting force unlike any the world has seen; these memorable practical creations – working from the director’s original design concepts and realized by Rogier Samuels’ able f/x team – are the stuff that nightmares are made of and the film’s raison d’etre.

Throughout a prolonged and difficult birthing process (first flickering to life via its Worst Case Scenario trailer), Raaphorst has delivered a genre flick that deserves our respect in spite of its occasional logistical flaws (inherent to the found footage milieu) and a third act that leaves our titular antagonist (Karel Roden) floundering in a sea of black comedy at odds with the straight-faced scenes preceding.

Hats off to a determined artist looking beyond comic undead Nazis possibilities – whatever its minor missteps, this is a wild ride worth taking.

--Aaron Christensen, HorrorHound Magazine


  1. This hasn't been getting great reviews, but I may still wind up checking it out just to see all of those bizarre creatures in action. Nitpicking about the limitations of camera equipment in the '40s aside, it just seems like it could be a lot of fun.

    1. Interesting. I haven't been reading a lot of reviews, but there's no way people can't give credit where credit is due. The creatures are AWESOME and the conceit is pretty strong.