The Bride

Why does the Bride hiss and shriek? She just woke up and there’s a bunch of weird guys mooning at her. No wonder she’s in a bad mood. Maybe she would have come to love her intended Groom eventually but the dude was definitely rushing things.

I watched the first Universal Frankensteins for the first time early this year. I’ve been looking at images of the Monster and his Bride since I was a kid but except for Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein I hadn’t actually watched the movies. The common wisdom is that Bride of Frankenstein is a better film than Frankenstein and that’s probably true. It’s certainly a more interesting film. Frankenstein is a pretty straight forward story and has few surprises to it – man creates monster, monster escapes, people get killed and a torch bearing mob hunts the monster down. Bride of Frankenstein adds another mad doctor, has the monster begin to speak and gives us a second monster in the Bride.

And, honestly, still pictures of the Bride, don’t do her justice. Elsa Lancaster gives a wonderfully twitchy performance. I think the most unfortunate things about the Universal series is that the Bride only appears this once and, after this film, the Monster returns to being a mute, mostly zombie-ish creature. Ah well, her single appearance means we’re left wanting more rather than wanting her to go away.

2 thoughts on “The Bride

  1. I watched the first 2 Frankie movies just a few years ago, not so long after reading the book. I liked them both OK, but was surprised by Bride. I’d happily watch it again.

    I was intending to continue with further sequels but haven’t gotten around to it.

  2. Son of Frankenstein is a good sequel. The Monster goes back to being a mute and so is less interesting. Basil Rathbone is good as the son trying to prove that his father wasn’t a loon or evil. And Bela Lugosi makes a great villain as the vengeful Igor. I loved the set design – a great use of sweeping arches and lots of negative space.

    Ghost of Frankenstein? Bleah. Bela is back as Igor but he just doesn’t have the same energy. Lon Chaney replaces Karloff, poorly, as the Monster – still mute, still lurching.

    Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man is a good sequel to the Wolf Man. It’s not terribly significant as a Frankenstein sequel. Bela Lugosi isn’t a terribly interesting Monster and doesn’t have much screen time.

    House of Frankenstein has Karloff as a mad scientist, Glenn Strange as the Monster, John Caradine as Dracula and Lon Chaney as the Wolf Man again. It’s amusing but not much else.

    I haven’t seen House of Dracula yet. That one is on the Dracula Legacy collection and I’ve never cared much for the old bloodsucker. I’ll get around to it eventually.

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