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Frankenstein Unbound Details


Legendary low-budget mogul Roger Corman made a somewhat inauspicious return to the director's chair for the first time in nearly twenty years (unless one counts his uncredited participation in "pickup" shoots for several New World Pictures productions) for this quaint sci-fi/horror outing, based on the popular novel by Brian Aldiss. Opening in the year 2031, the story begins with scientist Joseph Buchanan (John Hurt) working on a top-secret military project that creates a rift in time in space, hurtling him and his ultra-high-tech hotrod backwards through time to the early 19th century. Buchanan manages to adapt quite well to his new surroundings, particularly after making the acquaintance of fellow scientist Baron Frankenstein (Raul Julia). Curiously, the Baron is presented here as an authentic historical figure, and his monster-making efforts the basis for the famed book by Mary Shelley (Bridget Fonda), which was a work of fiction. After ruminating about his situation with Mary and her future husband Percy Shelley (late INXS frontman Michael Hutchence) at the villa of mad poet Lord Byron (Jason Patric), Buchanan is approached by the Baron to help construct a mate for his intelligent but homicidal creature (Nick Brimble). Unfortunately, things do not go according to plan, leading to an ironic denouement that finds Buchanan pondering the apocalyptic results of his life's work. The film boasts solid production values and some beautiful location photography (most of the film was shot in Italy); however, the classy look and high-profile casting can't disguise the overall feel of an early New World outing, albeit with a much larger budget. The script, adapted by Corman and writer F.X. Feeney, eliminates many of the novel's intellectual twists and turns; much of the remaining dialogue comes off as merely pretentious. ~ Cavett Binion, Rovi

  • Release date:November 2, 1990


John Hurt
as Dr. Joseph Buchanan
Raul Julia
as Baron Victor Frankenstein
Bridget Fonda
as Mary Godwin
Nick Brimble
as Monster
Catherine Rabett
as Elizabeth
Jason Patric
as Lord Byron
Catherine Corman
as Justine Moritz
Michael Hutchence
as Percy Bysshe Shelley
Mickey Knox
as General Reade
Terri Treas
as Car
Paul Weston
as Watchman
Isabella Rocchietta
as Dorrie
Bruce McGuire
as Prosecutor
William Geiger
as Lab Technician
Myriam Cyr
as Information Officer
Cyrus Elias
as Werner
Donald Hodson
as Old Man
John Karlsen
as Parson
Geoffrey Copleston
as Innkeeper


Roger Corman
Roger Corman
Kobi Jaeger
Thom Mount
Michael Miner
Ed Neumeier
Roger Corman
F.X. Feeney
Brian Aldiss
Book Author
Armando Nannuzzi
Enrico Tovaglieri
Production Designer
Ennio Michettoni
Set Designer
Caro Jones
Nick Dudman