Screenwriter Chris McKenna says he was inspired more by Frankenstein movies than by sunnier Disney cartoons. The story takes place in the kingdom of Malaria, where evil scientists rule, aided by their hunchbacked servants, known as Igors. But one of these Igors (voiced by John Cusack) dreams of advancing beyond his rank. When his master dies, Igor decides to enter the annual Evil Science Fair himself and burst the bounds of servitude. Rivals try to foil his plans before the inevitable happy ending.
The animation style, drenched in darkness, owes more to "Tim Burton's Nightmare Before Christmas" than to recent Pixar hits. The visual style grows a bit monotonous, but a more serious problem is that the story is undernourished, and the wit erupts only in flashes. Although Molly Shannon does what she can with Eva, the monster who dreams of being an actress, the script could use more wickedly satirical touches.