Monday, October 7, 2013


Watching the new Australian Frankenstein Created Woman blu-ray release has certainly given me a new appreciation for Terence Fisher’s 1966 film, possibly the most unique (not necessarily best) entry in Hammer’s Frankenstein series. There’s something much more... grim and baroque about Frankenstein Created Woman , right from the evocative opening sequence that shows a young boy watching on as his alcoholic father is beheaded by guillotine on some barren hilltop. The screenplay by the (recently deceased) Anthony Hinds (writing as John Elder) injects some science-fiction elements and touches on some deep subjects like religion, metaphysics, psychosexuality and the existence of the soul. Of course, all of this is delivered in pure pulp fashion, but it still manages to ask some interesting questions. Another terrific performance from Peter Cushing as the Baron. The three arrogant (and doomed) young toffs, in their top-hats and tails, bring a strange sense of flamboyance to the film. There’s even an element of doomed romance that is nicely played and rather affecting. The moments of horror are not amongst Hammer’s most graphic, but they are rather brutal and chilling nonetheless, and seem more horrific because they are delivered not by some grotesque monster but by a beautiful young blonde woman (in the form of enigmatic Austrian model and Playboy Playmate Susan Denberg).