Frankenstein

 

Frankenstein

(1931)

FrankensteinDistributor : Universal Studios
Director : John Whale
Writing credits : Garrett Fort, Francis Edward Faragoh
et Robert Florey, based on the novel by Mary W Shelley
Producer : Carl Laemmle Jr

Cast: 

Colin Clive......... Henry Frankenstein
Mae Clarke......... Elizabeth
John Boles........ Victor Moritz
Boris Karloff......... The Monster
Edward Van Sloan........ Dr Waldmann
Dwight Frye......... Fritz
Frederick Kerr......... Baron Frankenstein
Lionel Belmore......... Herr Vogel, the burgomaster
Marilyn Harris......... Little Maria
Michael Mark......... Ludwig

Mary Shelley, when she was only 18, wrote the novel "Frankenstein Or The Modern Prometheus" as a story in a contest between friends, never guessing nor intending, originally, that it be published.

The classic and definitive monster/horror film of all time, Frankenstein is the screen version of Mary Shelley's Gothic nightmarish novel. This film was produced for Universal Pictures, the same year that Dracula (1931), another classic horror film, was produced within the same studio - both films helped to save the beleaguered studio. 

Significantly, this film launched the career of actor Boris Karloff, who is surprisingly uncredited in the opening credits of the film as the Monster. In the beginning credits titled "The Players," the Monster is listed fourth, with a question mark after its name. In the end credits, however, where the cast list is prefaced by - "a good cast is worth repeating...," the Monster is listed fourth with Boris Karloff's name following. Karloff's performance is remarkable - his acting communicated a hint of the humanity of the Monster behind its hideous, stitched and bolted-together body.

Bride of FrankensteinThe sequel to this Monster story is found in director James Whale's even greater film, Bride of Frankenstein (1935). In addition to this film, dozens of other adaptations have been made of the Frankenstein horror story, as The Curse of Frankenstein (1957), by Terence Fisher, with Peter Cushing as Dr Frankenstein and Christopher Lee as the monster. The most recent one is  Mary Shelley's Frankenstein (1994), by Kenneth Branagh and Francis Ford Coppola with Robert de Niro as the monster

FrankensteinThe film begins with Henry Frankenstein and his hunchback assistant Fritz stealing a body from a grave and another from the gallows. Later Fritz is sent to a medical university where he is to steal a brain for Frankenstein's creature. He accidentally drops the glass jar with the brain and instead takes another, oblivious to the jar's label "abnormal brain". Meanwhile Frankenstein's fiancée Elizabeth and his friend Victor plan to visit Frankenstein in his laboratory. After having received a strange letter from Henry Elizabeth is worried about him. Dr. Waldman's revelation, that her husband-to-be has left university and was involved in strange experiments only makes her more anxious. The trio arrive just in time to attend Frankenstein's final experiment, the creation of an artificial human being, which Frankenstein animates by exhibiting it to electricity created by a thunderstorm. Unfortunately, the creature turns out to be an ugly and dumb brute unable to utter a single word. When the enraged creature becomes troublesome Frankenstein locks it away in the cellar. But the Monster, constantly tortured by Fritz with a whip and a torch, breaks free, kills Fritz and Dr. Waldmann and escapes. Meanwhile Frankenstein, believing his creature to be destroyed by Waldmann, prepares for hiswedding with Elizabeth. But the joyful event is suddenly wasted when a peasant father arrives in the village carrying his murdered daughter Maria. Soon a lynch mob lead by burgomaster Vogel and Frankenstein leaves to kill the Monster. In the mountains Frankenstein and his creature finally meet. The Monster drags its creator into an old windmill and throws him down the walls. Frankenstein's fall is weakened by a blade of the mill and he survives. The enraged citizens set the building on fire and the Monster is supposedly burnt to death.

 

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