I Was a Teenage Frankenstein (1958)

Article #225 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing date: 10-27-2001
Posting date: 3-12-2002

Dr. Frankenstein decides to create life using teenage bodies, as they are more “alive” than older bodies. He creates a teenage monster that he tries to control.

This badly written follow-up to I WAS A TEENAGE WEREWOLF emphasizes the corrupt authority figure (Whit Bissell) over the monster (Gary Conway), the opposite approach to that of WEREWOLF. Bissell does the best he can with what he’s given to work with, but the doctor never really becomes a living, breathing three-dimensional character, despite the humorous lines he is given on occasion. Still, he’s a better-developed character than the monster, whose total personality seems to consist of his being a teenager who doesn’t want to be cooped up. The monster’s final rebellion against his creator is poorly motivated and makes little sense, and even though a better actor than Gary Conway might have pulled it off, as it is, it just feels like the moviemakers reached the point where they knew they needed to end the movie. The movie is also much talkier than its predecessor, with far too much running time spent on the Doctor’s love life. The monster’s makeup is memorable in its own way, but that bloated eye is a major distraction. All in all, my least favorite of the four “teenage” films produced by Herman Cohen.

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