Living my life without ever having to watch another ‘found footage’ horror movie will be a blessing. I’ve seen far too many of them over the years. I’ve watched the subgenre at its peak with The Blair Witch Project, but I think I’ve finally caught the all time low with Frankenstein’s Army. It’s cinematic balderdash of the highest order, a criminal waste of 90 minutes. To exacerbate the issue, it takes a kernel of a good idea and throws it away.
Richard Raaphorst’s WWII set film sees a group of Russian soldiers come across the laboratory of an evil German scientist (is there any other kind?) who has been experimenting on turning humans into deranged (but efficient) killing machines. The soldiers all come to nasty grisly deaths, while someone films it in high definition with crisp clear audio – during World War II.
Like I said before, Frankenstein’s Army has a kernel of a good idea (it’s a war movie, so maybe that should be ‘colonel’) with a bunch of well designed, but poorly realised Nazi-built killing machines killing off a group of soldiers. However, it’s just so badly made that you have no interest or care for what is happening on screen. There’s no excitement, no character development – frankly, there’s no point.
I’m sure that Frankenstein’s Army will have its admirers. People who laugh, cheer and high-five blood and gore, but it all looks like special effects. There’s no cringe-quality, or real fear. There’s no danger to proceedings. When you watch Frankenstein’s Army you know you’re watching a film. Raaphorst can’t seem to build tension, a shame, though he doesn’t appear to be able to direct actors either.
Life is too short for films like Frankenstein’s Army. It may have made a great pitch, but it makes one terrible movie.
Frankenstein’s Army comes with a 30 minute documentary detailing the film’s production. It’s a decent little feature, which shows that everyone was engaged on brining the film to the screen – too bad the finished product doesn’t work.