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Author Topic: The Best Frankenstein Films?  (Read 2226 times)
JaseSF
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« on: February 11, 2010, 05:46:10 PM »

Here are some of my personal favourites.

1) BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN (1935): Why Bride?? Well for one thing it makes the monster arguably seem more the victim. We can sympathize more with its plight - it never asked to be what it is. "Hate the living - love the dead". I also feel the talking humanizes the Monster more so that we feel more kinship for him.

2) FRANKENSTEIN (1931): so very different from the novel that inspired it yet the main themes remain.  It is most certainly memorable and highly entertaining. And is without any doubt the one movie most people will likely think of when someone mentions FRANKENSTEIN

3) REVENGE OF FRANKENSTEIN: this Hammer entry has Dr. Frankenstein on the run and in hiding but alas he is still up to his forbidden work. This portrays Dr. Frankenstein as a man of vision and determination who wants to benefit man but alas fear rules the day and time in which he lives.

4) COLOSSUS: THE FORBIN PROJECT: What??!! Yes you did read that right - Colossus I consider a more modern take on the old Frankenstein tale with Dr. Charles Forbin creating not an intelligent man out of dead body parts but a living computer mind that is much too advanced for human good, once again a man is in essence destroyed by his own creation. "Your mother was right---FRANKENSTEIN should be required reading for all scientists" - COLOSSUS

5) . FRANKENSTEIN: THE TRUE STORY: this was a 2-part mini-series in which Dr. Frankenstein tries to create the perfect man. He thinks he has succeeded but alas things start to go wrong and in the end, things wind up pretty close to events in Shelley’s novel.


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« Reply #1 on: February 11, 2010, 06:21:28 PM »

My favorite are the Universal Frankies....but of them-my tops is...

.The SON OF FRANKENSTEIN (1939)-Yeah...Karloff doesn't have much to do until the last quarter of the film,but Basil Rathbone seems to be on the brink of a total nervous breakdown,Lionel Atwill is great as the wood armed Inspector,and,of course Bela as Ygor (NOT Igor-as some think it's spelled)-Lugosi steals every scene he's in.
"I stole bodies...eh...they said!" Not a hint of Dracula....too bad more directors didn't take advantage of this man's talent. Hell-he played Shakespeare in Hungary!-He-he did---ok. I won't turn this into a "Lugosi got f*cked " rant.
.FRANKENSTEIN (1931)-I like this one better than BRIDE as well...just cuz it's darker and the lack of any music (like the original DRACULA) makes it even more eerie. And-even though I'm a Bela fanatic-I don't think Karloff's performance in this one has ever been topped. I remember watching this on late night tv with my little sister Wendy (she was 6) in 1978. She started to cry at one point. "What's wrong? It's not real-it's just a movie. Don't be scared!" She wasn't scared....she was sad.
Karloff brought to horror what Chaplin brought to slapstick...pathos.
.BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN (1935) of course!-Mostly for James Whale's dark humor and the unforgettable Ernest Theisinger as the take-it-all-in-stride-attitude to walking corpses and all things morbid. And Elsa as the Bride is a classic monster-she played the role once. It's never even tried to be copied (well..Madiline Kahn dont count...and ferget about the Sting movie...)
Now...this is where it gets weird....

.FRANKENSTEIN MEETS THE SPACE MONSTER (196 something-I fergit)-I'ma bad movie fan...no explanation...
.FRANKENSTEIN AND THE MONSTER FROM HELL-I like Cushing-I like the weird hairy eyeless monster.
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« Reply #2 on: February 11, 2010, 07:15:12 PM »

Parts of me really liked Frankenstein Island but for all the wrong reasons.   Hammer's Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed was a good one as well.  Cushing plays a good prick in that one.
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« Reply #3 on: February 11, 2010, 08:26:27 PM »

Me, I've always liked Ghost of Frankenstein (1942) more than Son although it is in essence a sequel to that film. To me, Lugosi's Ygor is even more crazy, cunning and villainous in this picture.

Ygor: "The lightning. It is good for you! Your father was Frankenstein, but your mother was the lightning!"

I love Frankenstein Meets the Space Monster too although there in essence Frankenstein is simply referring to a robot astronaut space pilot named Frank who crashlands on Earth,  is damaged and goes berserk. Lots of catchy tunes in that one especially when the Martians invade a pool party to capture hapless women for breeding purposes.
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« Reply #4 on: February 11, 2010, 10:34:18 PM »

Dont get me wrong- I like ALL the Universal Frankensteins-Chaney made a brutish-p**sed off monster! He was STRONG. And MAD! GREAT film! I also like Glenn Strange. He didnt have a lot to do in his three outings as the Monster-but he looked dam cool! Lugosi as the Monster-his performance was hampered by the fact that all of his speaking parts in the film FRANKENSTEIN MEETS THE WOLFMAN were cut-so his staggerering arm outstreached,much imitated version made no sense. He was BLIND at the end of GHOST OF FRANKENSTEIN. F meets W was a butchered,nonsensical film. Yet,it's still fondly remembered because it was the first monster mash.And Chaney Was taller than Bela. Porrly executed. More of a cash-in on the Wolfman than a serious follow up to the first 4. B-movie fun,though.
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« Reply #5 on: February 12, 2010, 05:57:56 AM »

Woah.. no love for Young Frankenstein?  That's a fantastic movie!
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« Reply #6 on: February 12, 2010, 10:54:56 AM »

These certainly are not good, but they're fun:

* DRACULA, PRISONER OF FRANKENSTEIN
* JESSE JAMES MEETS FRANKENSTEIN'S DAUGHTER
* LADY FRANKENSTEIN
* FRANKENSTEIN'S CASTLE OF FREAKS
* FRANKENSTEIN ISLAND
* FRANKENSTEIN MEETS THE SPACE MONSTER

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« Reply #7 on: February 12, 2010, 01:34:47 PM »

I have never read Mary Shelley's work, but I know the premises. It's interesting how the majority of all adaptations have transformed Victor Frankenstein from the idealistic, if somewhat naive, scientist who believed in outdated scientific theories that would create a Gollum, but that he believed would benefit mankind by creating immotality and the "perfect man," into a more corrupt "mad scientist" caricature. Also, most adaptations have the mad scientist piecing the monster together from various bodies. The original novel never said that. The monster was reanimated from a single corpse.

Fascinating story, actually. Written during a time when medicine and science was undergoing a massive transformation from outdated and even medieval practices into modern medicine. When the novel was written, there were still some holdouts that practiced leech-craft.
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« Reply #8 on: February 12, 2010, 01:40:20 PM »

Wait, let me retract some of my previous post. Further research reveals that in the original novel, he did not create the monster from body parts, nor did he reanimate a single corpse, but the details of the creation are ambiguous. In other words, it's suggested he created golem-like creature, larger than a normal-sized man, but did not reanimate anything.
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« Reply #9 on: February 12, 2010, 03:09:35 PM »

Frankenstein: The True Story, a TV mini-series starring James Mason, actually has the Monster at first created as a seemingly perfect man. Of course, things later take a turn for the worse...much worse. And look out for Jane Seymour in this one as a potential Bride. Also stars David McCallum, Leonard Whiting Agnes Moorehead and Tom Baker.

The Hammer films are interesting given the wide variation between the different Dr. Frankenstein characters played by Peter Cushing. While essentially playing the same character, every time out the character seem a bit different to me. In Revenge mentioned above, he's more the misguided, daring scientist who truly wants to benefit the world but finds his work misunderstood wheras in Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed, he's become downright nasty in his obsession.
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« Reply #10 on: February 12, 2010, 03:10:42 PM »

This is my favourite just because it's so darn ridiculous!

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« Reply #11 on: February 13, 2010, 05:51:01 PM »

FRANKENSTEIN(1931)
BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN
HOUSE OF FRANKENSTEIN
HOUSE OF DRACULA
SON OF FRANKENSTEIN
GHOST OF FRANKENSTEIN
FRANKENSTEIN'S DAUGHTER
LADY FRANKENSTEIN
CURSE OF FRANKENSTEIN
EVIL OF FRANKENSTEIN
FRANKENSTEIN REBORN
YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN
FRANKENSTEIN the Miniseries(2004)
FRANKENSTEIN'S CASTLE OF FREAKS
FRANKENSTEIN MEETS THE WOLFMAN
ABBOT AND COSTELLO MEET FRANKENSTEIN



Out Of All Of These Great Movies , The One That Most Closely Resembles The Book Is The 2004 Miniseries


There Are Dozens More FRANKENSTEIN Movies Out There That I Have To See!
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« Reply #12 on: February 13, 2010, 05:52:13 PM »

....I Almost Forgot JESSE JAMES MEETS FRANKENSTEIN'S DAUGHTER
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JaseSF
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« Reply #13 on: February 13, 2010, 06:44:33 PM »

No mention yet of Dracula vs. Frankenstein (1971)? Al Adamson's version might not be particularly good but it is surprisingly goofy fun especially when the monsters finally tangle. Actually I too have dozens of Frankenstein films left to see...only Dracula seems to have been adapted more...or was he?
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« Reply #14 on: February 13, 2010, 07:51:45 PM »

And here is the WORST (by far) Frankenstein movie ever.  It is an incomprehensible, pseudo-artsy, ego-trip movie made by a very young director.  Awful, awful, awful . . . and I bought the damned DVD.

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