Spoiler-free Lisa Frankenstein Review
It does not take long into Lisa Frankenstein before viewers will realize that this is a very unserious film – if they didn’t figure that out from the trailer already. When a teenage girl decides to wish upon a storm, she could never have guessed what was going to happen next. Lisa (Kathryn Newton) accidentally reawakens the corpse of a young man (Cole Sprouse) and the two go on a murderous journey together.

As expected, Lisa Frankenstein delivers on the kind of campy humor that will instantly make it a cult classic. The best part about it is that every actor in this movie is fully committed to who their characters are. Now, don’t mistake this for saying they are being too serious, because they aren’t. They are doing exactly what they should be in order to take this film to the next level.

Sprouse will capture the hearts of viewers everywhere, without even saying a word. He is the perfect choice for this young zombie, who is just trying to figure out this modern world he is thrust into. After bonding with Lisa, he wants nothing more than to protect her. Because of this, things quickly get out of hand, but Lisa doesn’t scold him either. Rather, she embraces who he is and the decisions he has made.

(L-R): Cole Sprouse as The Creature and Kathryn Newton as Lisa in Lisa Frankenstein. Photo by: Michele K. Short/Focus Features

Newton and Sprouse have fantastic chemistry, and without them leaning into this bizarre relationship, Lisa Frankenstein would never work. Sure, the majority of the plot is predictable, but that doesn’t make it any less entertaining – or any less shocking during key scenes. This film pushes the envelope, which is sure to be appreciated by most of those watching.

When it comes to the humor, this is campy at its finest. Writer Diablo Cody knew exactly what kind of film this is and was completely unafraid to dive headfirst into it. Lisa Frankenstein is bonkers in the best way possible. The dialogue is absolutely ridiculous. There is nothing quite as hilarious as an actor speaking a very unserious line, as seriously as a heart attack, which is what happens with most of the lines in this film. And it just gets better and better.

While Newton and Sprouse are fantastic, Liza Soberano, who plays Lisa’s stepsister Taffy, steals the show. She fully commits to being the serious one all throughout the movie, and it never ever gets old. Her character is lovable from the start, breaking stereotypes and refusing to be the mean stepsister. Instead, the poor girl is mistreated by Lisa even though she is the only one welcoming her into the family, and her new school.

(L-R): Liza Soberano as Taffy and Kathryn Newton as Lisa in Lisa Frankenstein. Photo by: Michele K. Short/Focus Features

Sure, it is completely obvious where things are going, and she isn’t always the nice person she tries to be, but it is her relationship with Lisa, and Soberano’s on screen chemistry with Newton, that makes this movie work as well as it does. Their relationship takes this bizarre and twisted, murderous, romantic comedy, campy horror-esque movie to a whole new level.

It might seem like Lisa Frankenstein tries to be too many genres at once, but somehow it all works in a completely unexpected way. It never crosses the line when it comes to gore, but delivers just enough for those who came to see some murders. This movie has something for everyone but is mostly for those who enjoy campy films that get more and more insane the longer they go on.

Despite being predictable at times, the ending of this movie couldn’t be better. It doesn’t exactly come out of left field, but it has a few surprises up its sleeve. Get yourself some peach rings (you’ll understand when you see the movie) and be ready to go on the most ridiculous journey you have been on. It’s strange, fun, campy, and quite honestly, kind of cute and charming too.

Rating: 4 out of 5

About Lisa Frankenstein

A misunderstood teenager and a reanimated corpse embark on a murderous journey to find love, happiness and a few missing body parts.

Lisa Frankenstein comes to theaters on February 9th.


Tessa Smith is a Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer-approved Film and TV Critic. She owns Mama’s Geeky, but also is a freelance writer. Tessa has been in the Entertainment writing business for more than ten years and is a member of several Critics Associations including the Critics Choice Association. Her passion for film, television, video games, and comic books started when she was a little girl and has only continued to grow. 

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