These Frankenstein Trailers are Blowing My Mind

 

-This post was delayed a few days while I was readded to the site..

So I’ve been thinking about yesterday’s lecture and, of course, the thing that’s sticking with me the most is the I, Frankenstein trailer. Remember? It’s the one that everyone lol’d at and then ranted about for 20 minutes afterwards as if it’s the worst thing that ever could have been created. Now, I don’t pretend to have been deeply entranced by the trailer. And yes, I do expect the movie to be rather terrible and since I’m not a hardcore Frankenstein fanatic I’ll probably never actually see it and it will only exist in my memory as that trailer for that one movie that I watched that one time that was probably promoting a crappy movie. BUT, this is all beside the point. The point is (or at least the reason it was brought into lecture is) to provoke the question what, if anything, can an adaptation do for the original story, or rather, the audience of the original story. And yes, this question still applies even if you think the adaptation is completely terrible.

            Now I feel like we talked about I, Frankenstein enough yesterday so I’ll keep this short. But I just wanted to ask what up with the Gargoyle thing? That’s what those were right? Oh, and I watched one other youtube video about it

(here it is if you care: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v2VUIGvQmJ4)

And they said that the film would also include the hunchback of notre dame, the invisible man, and Dracula. When I heard that it kinda made me laugh. It’s like The Avengers for 19th century gothic fans. (Yes The Invisible Man came a little later, and yes I had to look up the dates for the first publications) But my short point on this is just that it reminded me of the point someone made in class that I, Frankenstein looks like it could exist even if you scooped up Frankenstein’s monster and stuck a different character right in his place. Well, I’d say that’s probably pretty true. You could probably put anyone of the characters mentioned above into the main role and it would work. They could even keep Aaron Eckhart as the star. He could just develop a slight limp and call himself the hunchback and he’d be about as close a representation to the original hunchback character as he is to Frankenstein’s monster. They could even keep the same lines. Just have him get a really conflicted look on his face and call himself a monster, let him whine about how, “he doesn’t know who he really is,” for a scene or 2. Or 20.

Anyway, as I was perusing youtube, casually searching for anything Frankenstein related I found this trailer.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KK5WSD2PVHA

Apparently this baby already came out and I missed it. No idea how that happened.  Blows my mind. BUT, I’ll admit that this trailer interested me way more than the I, Frankenstein one. Obviously the two are way different in the fact the monster is not the main character in this second one, but they’re both adaptations in which the monster is supposed to be found living centuries after Shelley’s tale ends. Who knows what the monster is like in The Frankenstein Theory. All I get from the trailer is a roar that seems to be a bear with a bad hairball, and then a large, hairy figure ripping a door off the hinges. So I’d guess that this adaptation doesn’t quite stick to the quick-witted, articulate version of the monster from Shelley. But, what, if anything can we take from this modern day adaptation. Of course it’s hard to gauge from just a trailer. But at first glance I like the isolated landscape. It kind of feels like it’s channeling a sort of isolation from society feeling that the monster experiences ( and Victor at times). I also think they’re playing up the character of one of the dudes as a bit of a modern day Victor. He’s screaming about not wanting to leave because he’s, “on the verge of a great scientific discovery!” From the trailer this appears to be happening after one of his bros has already been killed off. So this is basically screaming a reference to the blindness/single-mindedness that Victor experienced as he made his way towards his own great scientific discovery. Just shoving the reference down our throats really. And sooo that’s about all I got on that. Maybe there’s some value in it. Maybe it holds some of the original themes. Maybe it provides a decent representation of what it would it would be like for a group of people to find the monster in the present day. Who knows? Maybe I’ll watch it one day.

P.S.

That’s totally bigfoot in the trailer right? Like they’re hunting bigfoot, not Frankenstein, right? This is just a mashup of bigfoot/Frankenstein mythology made into the Blair Witch Project. I’m 100% sure that’s how this story was pitched.

P.P.S.

For another trailer check this one out: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PMUQ2IMuz8o

Psychotic, Nazi version of Victor Frankenstein makin monsters. Woah.

P.P.P.S. My own version of a modern day Frankenstein adaptation involves the monster leaving the ship, being frozen for a century/century n a half before being exposed to nuclear radiation and awakening to wreak even more havoc upon the world/be a super hero. I haven’t decided which way it’s gonna go yet.

 

If you’re still reading at this point then I’m impressed. I really don’t feel like I’ve talked about anything. But anyway I want to get back to the book for at least a little. My question is this: why does the monster seem to accept death after the death of Victor. The monster was obviously intent upon holding on to life up until this point or he would have allowed Victor to catch him. Is it as simple as a, my creator died so I might as well die too/have nothing left to live for mentality? Maybe. It’s possible the monster saw his creator as his only reason for living. The only purpose he served in life was to cause despair to the man who created him, and in doing so brought despair upon his own creation. However, the monster seems to claim that this was not the case. He says that he did not seek, “a fellow-feeling in misery.” So why does he want to die all of the sudden? I don’t know.

My next question is what does the monster expect to find after death and does he expect what he finds will bring him peace? “I shall ascend my funeral pile triumphantly,” he says. This may refer to him literally getting on top of a pile as prepares to burn himself, which appears to be his plan. But I also read it as the monster talking about what will happen to him after death. Perhaps he is referring to his soul ascending, and rising above the pile and up to heaven after he passes. This of course begins the discussion regarding whether or not the monster does, indeed, have a soul.  I’m not too interested in this. I’d just like to say that I think it’s clear the monster believes he has a soul. He later refers to his, “spirit” and its condition after his death.

“I look on the hands which executed the deed; I think on the heart in which the imagination of it was conceived, and long for the moment when they will meet my eyes, when it will haunt my thoughts no more.” In this passage I believe the monster is referring to the hands and eyes of Victor. (I’m reading it as the deed that Victor’s hands executed was the creation of the monster, and his heart and imagination conceived the idea initially). The monster then goes on to say that he longs for the moment when, “they will meet his eyes.” It seems he is referring to Victor’s hands and heart; perhaps we can just read this as the soul of Victor himself since he has already passed away. In this reading I feel like the reason the monster wishes to die now is because he wants to meet Victor in the afterlife. He wants his soul to meet with Victor’s and be at peace. Because of his looks, there was no way for him to have a good relationship with his creator in the world he was brought into, but perhaps he can find this relationship in the afterlife. In the end, this is not much different from anybody following religion. A man is incapable of knowing his creator in life, and so much of life is pain as men struggle to understand the meaning of life or come to terms with their existence. It is in the afterlife that many people hope to know their creator and find peace through him.

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3 Responses to These Frankenstein Trailers are Blowing My Mind

  1. h0p3d1am0nd says:

    Wow! There was so much cool stuff in your post. I love the way you discussed the different Frankenstein-based movie trailers. You’re right; there are definitely some interesting ones out there. I’m not sure how I personally feel about the ones you picked out, but I guess that just shows the huge variety that exists in Hollywood. It’s amazing that so many revolve around Frankenstein or Frankenstein-eque characters/tropes. You can’t go wrong with a monster and/or an evil scientist, I suppose.

    After all your P.S.’s I sort of figured that the post was over; but surprise! I think some of your best insight was in the next part. I really enjoyed your breakdown of the creature’s motives in the last scene for what he says and does/plans to do. When I read through that part, I imagined that the creature was ready to die once Frankenstein had because the former had failed his task–to render Frankenstein as lonely and miserable as himself and in turn, make Frankenstein feel for the creature’s plight. When Frankenstein died, this convinced the creature of his failure to ever gain any sort of empathy or understanding from his creator. However, that’s where my analysis stopped and where yours steps in beautifully. Perhaps, in death, the creature hopes to do what his horrible physical appearance prevented him from doing in real life–to connect with other souls, especially that of Frankenstein. He’ll re-meet his creator on a more level playing field where both will be judged solely on their souls and hopefully come to understand one another and rest in peace.

  2. writinginmy says:

    “The Frankenstein Theory” seems a little more interesting because it follows a (pseudo) documentary style, which I feel like is the modern version of the epistolary. But of course, it looks a little cheap and one of the commentators said it looked like a cheaper version of Trollhunter. However, I agree that there’s some kind of parallel between the main character in that movie and Victor in the novel, and even Captain Robert Waldon.

    I wonder – if the end is a gesture to souls and if we take your reading of ‘ascension’ in that way, how many more problems this brings in through the question of souls. I’m not sure I can comment on the death scene, other than it struck me deeply. But I imagine you can relate it to if God was completely disproven/excised/removed from our lives – that there was no longer that uncertainty or possibility of God, but instead the fact established is that there is no God. As h0p3d1am0nd said, when Victor died, the possibility of any reciprocation or understanding from vanished as well.

  3. I find your analysis of the end of this novel fascinating; it’s clear from earlier moments in the text, particularly moments that bring in Paradise Lost, that Frankenstein views Victor as his God since he is his creator. However, I hadn’t thought about any possibility of the afterlife for the monster, or what the monster was thinking, and I think your questioning this is especially interesting at this point in the novel as we are refused the monster’s perspective, save what he shares with a complete stranger.

    I’d like to toss in the question of if Victor can ever embrace him as a creator– I find your analogy to the average man who cannot know his creator in life interesting, because in the monster’s case, he does know his creator in life, but he is rejected. I do agree that the initial hatred of the monster came from his disfigurement, especially in the context of the novel when everyone seems to see the physical as some sort of window to the soul. However, I wonder if Victor’s hatred for the monster runs too deep at this point to recover, or if the monster will be able to end up with Victor in the afterlife at all.

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