The Evil of Frankenstein (1964)

evil of frankenstein poster 1964 movie
4.0 Overall Score
Story: 4/10
Acting: 6/10
Visuals: 4/10

Peter Cushing's insane Frankenstein

Return to traditional Frankenstein monster, weak story

 
Movie Info

Movie Name:  The Evil of Frankenstein

Studio:  Hammer Film Productions

Genre(s):  Horror

Release Date(s):  May 8, 1964

MPAA Rating:  Not Rated

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This disguise worked for Robin!

Unable to fund his own experiments, Baron Victor Frankenstein (Peter Cushing) and his assistant Hans (Sandor Elès) are forced to return to the home he were banished from.  Victor quickly discovers the men that ordered him to leave have taken his belongings and don’t intend to let him return.  Teamed with a travelling hypnotist named Zoltan (Peter Woodthorpe) and a mute girl (Katy Wild), Victor and Hans are about to discover the Monster (Kiwi Kingston) has survived…and under the control of Zoltan, the Monster will kill again!

Directed by Freddie Francis, The Evil of Frankenstein is a Hammer Horror production.  The film is a follow-up to The Revenge of Frankenstein from 1958 and the third film in Hammer Horror series.  The movie was poorly received by a critics and is often considered one of the weakest entries in the Hammer Frankenstein franchise.  The Evil of Frankenstein is often available in multipacks and collections.

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You had me at “ARRRGGH”

Frankenstein always was a classic growing up and the British version of the film wasn’t as frequently aired as the Boris Karloff film (and its even better sequel The Bride of Frankenstein).  As a result, I never really connected with this series as much…and this film doesn’t help much.

The plot for the story is quite weak.  It really can’t decide what it wants to be about.  Frankenstein and Hans wander around quite a while before it gets to the “plot” of Zoltan and his random, undirected plot of mayhem for controlling the Monster.  When the Monster kills, Zoltan said he didn’t mean it to…though the Monster had already been proven to be unpredictable and violent.  I know that the makers wanted a twist in the plot, but the story isn’t a good one.

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Me sad because I’m a Boris Karloff rip-off…

Fortunately, Peter Cushing continues to be fun to watch.  I like him as Frankenstein who is fallible, and as opposed to his Van Helsing, quite irrational.  His cohort Hans played by Sandor Elès is a likeable character, and Elès replaced Francis Matthews who originated the role in the previous film.

The monster in this version returns to the classic “Frankenstein Monster” of Universal Pictures which is a disappointment.  What was unique about the first Frankenstein film by Hammer is that the Monster wasn’t the lumbering green giant of the old films…here he just feels like a rip-off of Universal’s Monster.

The Evil of Frankenstein isn’t a very good entry in the Frankenstein line nor is it a very good film.  With Hammer pumping out tons and tons of films at the time, there is bound to be some stinkers and this one is one of them.  The Evil of Frankenstein was followed by Frankenstein Created Woman in 1967.

Related Links:

The Curse of Frankenstein (1957)

The Revenge of Frankenstein (1958)

Frankenstein Creates Woman (1967)

Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed (1969)

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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