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I, Frankenstein is more than a remake

Graphic novelist Kevin Grevioux reimagines the story of the soulless monster

Juliana Norwood | 1/30/2014, midnight

The newly released Gothic action-thriller, I, Frankenstein, revisits the story originally told in Mary Shelley’s groundbreaking 1818 novel, where the character was first introduced. Only now, 200 years have passed and Dr. Frankenstein’s monster, symbolically named Adam, lives on and finds himself in the middle of a violent war between demons and gargoyles. A war over the souls of humankind.

From the creators of the largely successful Underworld series, this film pulls a few pages from the old playbook with gripping fight scenes between fantastical creatures, high-flying CGI action, and a plethora of underlying real-life messages.

“This is the story of how Frankenstein’s monster begins to earn his humanity,” said director Stuart Beattie. “He has to figure out who he is, what he is, and why he is.”

Aaron Eckhart (Adam) makes for a surprisingly convincing Frankenstein that is far removed from the clunking, grumbling, bolt-headed monster of horror movies past. He instead embodies a very human-like shell of a man searching for a soul, a purpose, and a mate. And maybe a little vengeance to boot.

Unknown to Adam, the truth of his creation is key to the future of humankind.

The leader of the demon horde, Prince Naberius (Bill Nighy), is hell-bent on uncovering the answers to Adam’s creation so that he can replicate the process and create an army of duplicates to aid him in his quest for world domination.

He enlists the help of with an ambitious electrophysiologist, Dr. Terra Wade (Yvonne Strahovski), who without knowing Naberius’ true motives, helps play into his plan.

A benevolent group of angel-like gargoyles, led by Queen Leonore (Miranda Otto), make it their mission to stop Naberius and save the human race; Adam, having no sense of belonging or loyalty to either faction, must decide how to align himself, and in doing so, begins to discover his purpose.

I, Frankenstein is the brainchild of African American screenwriter, graphic novelist, actor, and executive producer Kevin Grevioux who surprisingly did not get his start on the Hollywood scene.

After graduating from Howard University with a degree in microbiology and studying genetic engineering in graduate school, Grevioux then decided to revisit what had always been of interest to him, beginning at a young age.

“My background is that I always liked science fiction and monster movies as a child, but you have to figure out how you are going to make a living doing that,” said Grevioux. “So what you really do, is you sublimate that desire by doing something more socially acceptable, which was getting into real science, so that’s what I did.”

“When you think about it, all real science is speculative before it’s proven to be true. The adage says, ‘Today’s science fiction is tomorrow’s technology,’ so really, what I ended up doing was coming full circle in terms of what I’ve always liked,” Grevioux explained. “So, when I got to a point where I realized that hard science wasn’t for me anymore, I decided to make the break and I came out to Hollywood, and here we are.”