DR. HACKENSTEIN (1988) Reviews and overview

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‘His experiments will leave you in stitches.’

Doctor Hackenstein is a 1988 American comedy horror film written and directed by Richard Clark and distributed by Troma Entertainment. The film’s obvious influences include Young Frankenstein, Murder by Death and Re-Animator. Comedienne Phyllis Diller has a small part in the movie.


In 1909, after the death of his wife, Doctor Elliot Hackenstein (David Muir) concocts the seemingly fiendish perfect plan: with the help of two useless graverobbers and three lost girls, he can use the spare parts to reanimate the disembodied head of his dead spouse Sheila and build a better woman.

His supervisor, Dean Schlesinger, is appalled and soon killed by Hackenstein. Meanwhile, three attractive young sisters become stranded and therefore would-be victims of Hackenstein…


Doctor Hackenstein has production values that are better than many of its cheap counterparts. Initially, it’s a passable 80s take on Young Frankenstein with additional minor titillation but the feeble humour soon becomes banal.

Adrian J Smith, MOVIES and MANIA

Other reviews:

“Clark includes some breasts, mainly because I think he felt he absolutely had to, and the gore—primarily Doctor Hackenstein operating off-camera as blood is squirted into his face—is minimal (except for a jarring eye-ripping scene toward the end.) … Doctor Hackenstein is a horror comedy that’s neither gory nor terribly funny.” DVD Verdict


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