I, Frankenstein Movie Poster Image

I, Frankenstein



Lifeless update of classic with lots of fantasy violence.
  • Review Date: January 22, 2014
  • Rated: PG-13
  • Genre: Science Fiction
  • Release Year: 2014
  • Running Time: 93 minutes

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The movie has a muddled message about teamwork, where the main character must choose which side to fight with during a war, but in the end, he appears to have become a lone wolf again.

Positive role models

No real role models here; the characters are either dumb, mean, monosyllabic, selfish, or deluded.


The movie features constant fantasy fighting. The hero uses two heavy sticks to beat up bad guys. Various blades are also used. When villains are dispatched, they simply turn into fire and disappear. When the good guys are dispatched, they turn into blue light and ascend into the sky. The main character is wounded and the female lead stitches up a cut on his back. Only a little blood is ever shown. There's a slightly disturbing lab experiment where characters attempt to resurrect a dead rat. A giant cavern is shown, filled with dead bodies hanging on hooks, all waiting to be resurrected.


The main character is shown shirtless, emphasizing his sculpted arms, chest, and abs. Some of the female characters are dressed in sexy outfits.


There's one use of "s--t."

Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that I, Frankenstein is an action/sci-fi movie, based on a comic book, that recasts the famous monster as a new kind of superhero, with super-speed and strength, and immortality. Most of the movie consists of fantasy fighting, with blades and martial arts weapons. When defeated, characters disappear into fire and light, with very little blood; the main character sustains one minor, bleeding wound so that the female character can dress it. The sculpted, chiseled main character is shown shirtless in one scene, and female characters wear somewhat sexy outfits, but otherwise sex is not an issue.

What's the story?

In 1795, after creating his famous monster, Victor Frankenstein tries to destroy his creation. But the monster (Aaron Eckhart) lives, only to be attacked by demons and subsequently rescued by gargoyles. The gargoyle queen, Leonore (Miranda Otto) offers him sanctuary and takes Victor's journal to keep it from falling into the wrong hands. Two hundred years later, the monster -- now called "Adam" -- returns to try and destroy the prince of the demons, Naberius (Bill Nighy). Naberius dreams of using Victor's methods to create an army of resurrected monsters to take over the world, and he's using a naïve human scientist, Terra (Yvonne Strahovski), to help. Will Adam choose the right path before it's too late?

Is it any good?


Stuart Beattie directs this adaptation of Kevin Grevioux's comic book, and even though Beattie is best known as a screenwriter (Pirates of the Caribbean, Collateral, etc.), he makes the rookie mistake of focusing more on production design and action than on writing or characters. In fact, what's actually there borders on ridiculous; the bad guy's plan makes no sense, and his use of a human scientist makes even less sense.

Aaron Eckhart has given good performances in the past, but he seems lost as the Frankenstein monster; he can only look hurt and angry throughout the entire movie. His super powers make him mostly unstoppable, and therefore uninteresting. When he forms a friendship with Terra, he mainly looks confused. The fight scenes are numbingly repetitive, and the movie itself eventually feels dead, like no one even tried. However, the costumes and sets are fairly impressive.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the movie's violence. What's the difference between fantasy violence and realistic violence? Does it affect how you feel while watching?

  • How does the movie compare with the original Frankenstein story and its themes? Does man have the right to create life?

  • Is the monster a hero in this movie? How are we supposed to feel about him?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:January 24, 2014
DVD release date:May 13, 2014
Cast:Aaron Eckhart, Yvonne Strahovski, Miranda Otto, Bill Nighy
Director:Stuart Beattie
Genre:Science Fiction
Topics:Book characters, Monsters, ghosts, and vampires
Run time:93 minutes
MPAA rating:PG-13
MPAA explanation:sequences of intense fantasy action and violence throughout

This review of I, Frankenstein was written by

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Great handpicked alternatives

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What parents and kids say

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Teen, 13 years old Written byAVTRlover 4 January 30, 2014

I, Frankenstein

This movie's only problems, content-wise, were almost constant fantasy violence (very unrealistic) and some mild profanity, but story-wise, it is filled with tons of issues. The only thing that I liked about this movie was the special effects. It started out like the familiar story, but it just went down from there, the rest of the movie was stupid. Gargoyles are angels! Come on! So this was a pretty tame movie compared to the similar Underworld (who was made by the same people), but it was not nearly as good.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much swearing
Teen, 15 years old Written byStevie111 January 31, 2014

Disappointing fantasy film

The violence is frequent and it's very action packed, but the effects aren't very frightening, as well as the demons. Story is interesting though. Avengers is more violent and much more mature
What other families should know
Too much violence
Teen, 13 years old Written byIan_hga116 April 10, 2014

Violent movie breathes life into classic character

I, Frankenstein is an awesome movie, expect frequent violence,
What other families should know
Too much violence


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