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Frankenstein (1931)

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Ratings: 8.0/10 from 39,699 users  
Reviews: 412 user | 161 critic

An obsessed scientist assembles a living being from parts of exhumed corpses.

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(based upon the composition by), (from the novel by), 6 more credits »
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Title: Frankenstein (1931)

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Sci-Fi | Horror | Drama
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One of the sons of Frankenstein finds his father's monster in a coma and revives him, only to find out he is controlled by Ygor who is bent on revenge.

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When Ygor brings the monster to Dr. Ludwig Frankenstein for care, Ludwig gets the idea of replacing the monster's current criminal brain, with a normal brain.

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Dr. Jekyll faces horrible consequences when he lets his dark side run wild with a potion that changes him into the animalistic Mr. Hyde.

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A mad, disfigured composer seeks love with a lovely young opera singer.

Directors: Rupert Julian, Lon Chaney, and 2 more credits »
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Victor Frankenstein builds a creature and brings it to life. But his creature behaves not as he intended.

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We watch Baron Frankenstein escaping from the guillotine and going to Germany. There, he names himself Dr. Stein and plans to restart his experiments by using parts of dead bodies.

Director: Terence Fisher
Stars: Peter Cushing, Francis Matthews, Eunice Gayson
Certificate: M Horror | Drama | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Baron Frankenstein is once again working with illegal medical experiments. Together with a young doctor, Karl and his fiancée Anna, they kidnap the mentally sick Dr. Brandt, to perform the ... See full summary »

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A circus' beautiful trapeze artist agrees to marry the leader of side-show performers, but his deformed friends discover she is only marrying him for his inheritance.

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Dr. Henry Jekyll experiments with scientific means of revealing the hidden, dark side of man and releases a murderer from within himself.

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When a disease turns all of humanity into the living dead, the last man on earth becomes a reluctant vampire hunter.

Directors: Ubaldo Ragona, Sidney Salkow
Stars: Vincent Price, Franca Bettoia, Emma Danieli
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
John Boles ...
...
The Monster (as ?)
Edward Van Sloan ...
Frederick Kerr ...
...
Lionel Belmore ...
Marilyn Harris ...
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Storyline

Henry Frankenstein is a doctor who is trying to discover a way to make the dead walk. He succeeds and creates a monster that has to deal with living again. Written by Josh Pasnak <chainsaw@intouch.bc.ca>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The Original Horror Show! See more »

Genres:

Horror | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

21 November 1931 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El doctor Frankenstein  »

Box Office

Budget:

$291,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$12,000,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the novel, Frankenstein builds and animates the Monster in what is essentially his dormitory room, and the method is never revealed. Universal decided on the castle laboratory with all the electrical equipment, and this is what the majority of the public now associate with the Monster's creation. See more »

Goofs

When Maria meets the Monster by the lake and talks to him, the close shots of her show some vegetation and the lake in the background. She then takes the Monster by the hand and walks him closer to the edge of the lake. When she next talks to the Monster, the background in the close shot is the same as it was before, as though she has not moved at all. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Dr. Henry Frankenstein: Down! Down, you fool!
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening credits say "Based upon the composition by John L. Balderston", without elaborating on what "Based upon the composition" really means, especially in this case, where there is already one original writer (Mrs. Percy B. Shelley) credited, along with a playwright, two screenwriters, and one scenario editor. See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

The first Universal monster classic movie I ever saw...

To clear the air on certain misconceptions that may arise from what I say here, I've read the book. I've liked the book. I realize that the movie truly has nothing in common with it aside from the fact that an artificial man is brought to life in both. But none of the above took away from my enjoyment of James Whale's rightly considered classic film. The tacked on introduction scene and the obligatory happy ending are indeed laughable when one thinks of what is horrific in this day and age, but I was hooked from the surreal credit sequence on. To me, the real ending of this film will always be at the burning windmill, an ending of an all-too-believable tragedy.

Colin Clive is a little bit overblown as Herr Frankenstein, but he does a capable enough job with the title role (something that is usually tacked onto the monster instead). Edward Van Sloan, a favorite of mine from the Universal stock company, does quite well himself as Frankenstein's old teacher, Dr. Waldmann. As for Karloff...*exhale in admiration* what can I say? I first knew him as the narrator and voice of the Grinch in Dr Seus' "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" (I didn't find this out until years later, but find out I did). "Frankenstein" marked the first time that I'd ever seen him on the screen for real. From the stiff walk to the eternally mournful face, he made the misunderstood monster his for the ages (it is also telling that, in spite of this, Karloff went on to a long, illustrious, if underappreciated, career).

Two other facts that stick in my mind about this movie: the creation sequence and the naming of two of it's characters. The heavy-industrial machinery used to create the monster was inspired by the silent Fritz Lang classic, "Metropolis" (indeed, many films, from the original "The Mummy" and "Bride of Frankenstein" to "Dark City" and "The Matrix" owe a debt to this excellent science fantasy), specifically the grafting of Maria's image onto the android. This machinery, I am told, would later go on to a return engagement in Mel Brooks' "Young Frankenstein". Fact #2: anyone who has read the novel will know that the first name of Frankenstein is Victor and his best friend's Henry. Apparently the play (or perhaps the screenplay writers; I've no way of knowing) switched these two around to where we know have HENRY Frankenstein and VICTOR his best friend.

The only thing that has "sucked" about "Frankenstein" is its imitators vainly trying to make lightning strike twice (pun intended). But don't bet the house on any ever coming close. A hundred years from now, this brilliant alternate work will still stand as truly classic as the book that helped to inspire it.


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Message Boards

Recent Posts
Dr. Frankenstein's Assistant...Book vs. FIlms CinematicFinatic
We shouldn't quibble over the Monster's name! kartoon-1
You gotta admit, the movie does pale when compared to the novel Agent_Mulder89
Frankenstein - time destortion rrjustron
sigh.... which version? ale3370
Best Actor to Portray Dr. Frankenstein? KingofWayne66
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