Frankenstein's Army (2013)
It's 1945, near the end of World War II. A group of Russian soldiers discover a secret Nazi laboratory, where a descendant of Frankenstein has been creating an army of half-robot super zombies. With the threat of being killed, or worse - being used in the human experiments - will the Russians escape with their lives? Will they keep filming absolutely everything for their found footage documentary? And will they remember to maintain their accents for the next 84 minutes?
The first act builds up an eerie atmosphere and teases us (and the characters) with some creepy clues to what's going on. Oh, and we find out it's a found footage film. Ok ok, it's hard to take seriously them recording everything. And the Russians and Germans all speak to each other in English. But don't worry, they use funny accents so we can keep track of who's what. It worked for Allo Allo, after all.
When the horror action kicks in, it's just like watching someone play Doom and Castle Wolfenstein. I have to say, the monsters are beautifully designed, steampunk creations. And pretty scary to boot. Whoever chose the filming locations was spot on, and the set design is excellent. All this, and decent, practical gore effects too. I love the way this movie looks.
Things change down a gear for the final act. It's still entertaining in a b-movie 'mad-scientist-creates-freaky-monsters' kind of way. After all the crazy running around beforehand, the shift in pace is pretty noticeable. It didn't spoil it for me, but it did feel slightly clunky.
Frankenstein's Army isn't a 'so-bad-it's-good' movie, despite how it sounds. I admit it expects its audience to accept some things without thinking too much about them. But I don't think a movie this bonkers is really meant to be taken too seriously.
As a horror film, it's more creepy than frightening. But it does have some great horror set pieces, and even a few moments of dark humour. It won't win any Oscars. It couldn't be described as high brow. But if you can sit back, grab the popcorn and a beer, and just take it for what it is - it's a really entertaining and fun movie.