By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)
Since the early days of Hollywood becoming the hub of movie-making to now, the approaches to making monsters come alive often required experimenting. The first creature creations were Dracula and Frankenstein. However, historians know Georges Méliès The Haunted Castle (1897) had skeletons dancing about. It wasn’t until Thomas Edison‘s 1910 short film, Frankenstein’s Monster, that gave Americans a taste of what cinematics can offer! Lon Chaney‘s contributions in how to achieve the horrific only furthered the horror film genre in its infancy. He took extremes in his makeup design to become the Man of a Thousand Faces.
Much of this history is quickly explored in directors Gilles Penso and Alexandre Poncet documentary Creature Designers: The Frankenstein Complex, but it hurries to get to the masters from the 60s and onwards. Their passion is certainly very evident. But it should be noted It’s tough to pack a complete look of creation of monsters in cinema with a 107 min runtime. A lot of details like the why isn’t always delved into–that’s all saved for the blu-ray package which consists of two documentaries, many extended interviews and an interactive video, which is now available to purchase online (like Amazon USA).
The standalone documentary scratches the surface to what makes a monster appear magical on screen. The latest documentary on Phil Tippett shows why he’s so deserving of those Oscars he earned over the years. He’s also being honoured at Fantasia Fest 2021 as his stop-motion pièce de résistance film, Mad Gods, debuts!
Continue reading “A ‘Monster’ Talk with The Frankenstein Complex Filmmakers & Its Release, and Interview”