Click here to return to the main site.

DVD Review

DVD cover

The Frankenstein Syndrome (Region 1 Edition)


Starring: Tiffany Shepis, Louis Mandylor, Patti Tindall, Scott Anthony Leet and Ed Lauter
MTI Home Entertainment
RRP: $24.95
Certificate: Not Rated
Available 05 July 2011

Elizabeth Barnes, a gifted research scientist, is invited to join a close-knit medical team working on a universal healing serum, to ultimately be used to treat serious injuries and illnesses. It is a top secret high security facility, the basement of which access is initially denied to her. When she wastes no time in developing a stem-cell serum which can reanimate the dead, she is finally trusted. However, Elizabeth soon discovers that young and desperate women are being held as test subjects. The experiments have devastating effects on them, causing the scientist to protest and leave the project. But the director/financier has ordered the group sealed in until their work is complete. Then a particularly violent security man is murdered. The serum returns him to life, but this time it’s different. He has to re-learn everything, and very quickly exceeds his own previous intelligence. And it doesn’t stop there, because he has now gained certain abilities...

Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein novel was one of the most ground-breaking and influential fiction pieces of all time. On the surface, a plain and simple monster tale, it explored a multitude of sub-texts, and delved into the human psyche and the basic principles of right and wrong. There was grave robbing, highly illicit (even unimagined) medical scientific experiments on the human body, the idea of being a misfit, sympathy for a person not responsible for their actions, fear of the unknown, reactionary violence - it was all there, and well worth a read even now. So, this is a strong basis for a modern take on the subject. There is both sympathy and fear in the presence of the highly unstable undead man. It works quite well, in that he periodically feels pain in his head, resulting in diverse reactions of either forcibly banging his head on a wall, or sobbing whilst rocking like a small child.

The moral and ethical story is pushed to its limits by introducing a new aspect. The reanimated man adopts certain abilities. He can read minds, which creates additional fear and paranoia. Also, a mental ability to make almost anything around him happen as he wishes, pushes the situation into an almost unprecedented realm. He begins by turning plain water into a red juice, and later has wine flow from a wall. So, you see where this is going. He is approached by a member of the research team to have the pain, caused by his debilitating disease, ended. This comes in an unexpected manner. Would this unique person be killed, because no human should possess these terrible powers? Would he be revered as the protective new saviour? Or would he be feared as a demon? In this day and age he would probably be killed, and then studied in secret.

I wouldn’t say this was an outstanding film; it’s pretty average in its action and content. However, its major strong point is the moral dilemmas raised in its telling, and that’s down to the strength of the script. I won’t comment on the extras listed by the promotional paperwork, because all I received for review was a recorded disc displaying periodic annoying warning messages (saying something like, if you show this to anyone else you’ll be hanged, drawn and quartered, and have your head placed on a spike outside Traitor’s Gate - or some such nonsense).


Ty Power

Buy this item online

We compare prices online so you get the cheapest deal
Click on the logo of the desired store below to purchase this item.

£17.57 (
$16.99 (

All prices correct at time of going to press.