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Frankenstein
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Frankenstein (1931) More at IMDbPro »

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Frankenstein -- Horror classic in which an obsessed scientist assembles a living being from parts of exhumed corpses.
Frankenstein -- Clip: It's Alive

Overview

User Rating:
8.0/10   41,493 votes »
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Director:
Writers:
John L. Balderston (based upon the composition by)
Mary Shelley (from the novel by)
(more)
Contact:
View company contact information for Frankenstein on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
21 November 1931 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Tagline:
A Monster Science Created - But Could Not Destroy! See more »
Plot:
An obsessed scientist assembles a living being from parts of exhumed corpses. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
3 wins & 1 nomination See more »
User Reviews:
Still quality stuff See more (433 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Colin Clive ... Henry Frankenstein

Mae Clarke ... Elizabeth
John Boles ... Victor Moritz

Boris Karloff ... The Monster (as ?)
Edward Van Sloan ... Doctor Waldman
Frederick Kerr ... Baron Frankenstein

Dwight Frye ... Fritz
Lionel Belmore ... The Burgomaster
Marilyn Harris ... Little Maria
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Ted Billings ... Villager (uncredited)
Mae Bruce ... Screaming Maid (uncredited)
Jack Curtis ... Extra (uncredited)
Arletta Duncan ... Bridesmaid (uncredited)
William Dyer ... Gravedigger (uncredited)
Francis Ford ... Hans (uncredited)
Soledad Jiménez ... Mourner (uncredited)
Carmencita Johnson ... Little Girl (uncredited)
Seessel Anne Johnson ... Little Girl (uncredited)
Margaret Mann ... Mourner (uncredited)
Michael Mark ... Ludwig (uncredited)
Pauline Moore ... Bridesmaid (uncredited)
Inez Palange ... Villager (uncredited)
Paul Panzer ... Mourner at Gravesite (uncredited)
Cecilia Parker ... Maid (uncredited)
Rose Plumer ... Villager (uncredited)
Cecil Reynolds ... Waldman's Secretary (uncredited)
Ellinor Vanderveer ... Medical Student (uncredited)

Directed by
James Whale 
 
Writing credits
John L. Balderston (based upon the composition by)

Mary Shelley (from the novel by) (as Mrs. Percy B. Shelley)

Peggy Webling (adapted from the play by)

Garrett Fort (screen play) &
Francis Edward Faragoh (screen play)

Richard Schayer (scenario editor)

Robert Florey  contributor to treatment (uncredited)
John Russell  contributor to screenplay construction (uncredited)

Produced by
E.M. Asher .... associate producer
Carl Laemmle Jr. .... producer
 
Original Music by
Bernhard Kaun (uncredited)
 
Cinematography by
Arthur Edeson 
Paul Ivano (uncredited)
 
Film Editing by
Clarence Kolster (film editor)
 
Art Direction by
Charles D. Hall 
 
Makeup Department
Pauline Eells .... wig maker (uncredited)
Jack P. Pierce .... makeup artist (uncredited)
Jack P. Pierce .... makeup designer (uncredited)
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Joseph A. McDonough .... assistant director (uncredited)
 
Art Department
Ed Keyes .... property master (uncredited)
Herman Rosse .... set designer (uncredited)
 
Sound Department
C. Roy Hunter .... recording supervisor
William Hedgcock .... sound recordist (uncredited)
 
Special Effects by
Franz Dallons .... props (uncredited)
Oscar Dallons .... props (uncredited)
Paul Dallons .... props (uncredited)
John P. Fulton .... special effects (uncredited)
Ken Strickfaden .... special electrical properties (uncredited)
 
Visual Effects by
Brian J. McNamara .... digital restoration artist (remastered version)
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Sherman Clark .... still photographer (uncredited)
Jack Eagan .... assistant camera (uncredited)
Jack Freulich .... still photographer (uncredited)
Alan Jones .... second camera (uncredited)
George Trafton .... assistant camera (uncredited)
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Mae Bruce .... wardrobe assistant (uncredited)
 
Editorial Department
Maurice Pivar .... supervising film editor (as Maurice E. Pivar)
 
Music Department
Giuseppe Becce .... composer: stock music (uncredited)
David Broekman .... musical director (uncredited)
Gilbert Kurland .... music supervisor (uncredited)
 
Other crew
Carl Laemmle .... presenter
Carl Laemmle .... president: Universal Pictures Corp.
Frank Graves .... electrical effects assistant (uncredited)
Raymond Lindsay .... electrical effects (uncredited)
Robert Livingston .... double: Colin Clive, closing distant shot (uncredited)
Cecil Reynolds .... medical consultant (uncredited)
Gerald L.G. Sampson .... technical advisor (uncredited)
 
Crew verified as complete


Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Runtime:
70 min
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Western Electric Sound System)
Certification:
Argentina:13 | Australia:M | Brazil:12 | Canada:PG (Manitoba/Ontario) | Canada:G (Quebec) | Canada:(Banned) (Quebec) (original rating) | Finland:K-15 (2004) | Germany:16 | Iceland:16 | Norway:16 (video rating) | South Korea:12 | Spain:13 | Sweden:11 | UK:A (original rating) (cut) | UK:PG (video rating) (2002) | UK:PG (video rating) (1986) (cinema version) (cut) | USA:Unrated | USA:TV-PG (TV rating)

Did You Know?

Trivia:
[Mae Clarke in a 1985 interview] I thought Karloff was magnificent. That scene with the skylight! When he looked up and up and up and up and waved his hand at the light, it was a spiritual lesson - looking at God! It was like when we die, the Beatific Vision, which makes people understand the words: 'Eye was not seen, nor ear heard, the glories that God has prepared for those who love Him.See more »
Goofs:
Incorrectly regarded as goofs: Right before the Monster's awakening Henry Frankenstein replies to the charge that he is crazy by taunting, "One man crazy, three very sane spectators." But there are four spectators: Victor, Elizabeth, Dr. Waldman and Fritz. Fritz is neither a spectator nor called crazy; he is an assistant.See more »
Quotes:
[first lines]
Dr. Henry Frankenstein:Down! Down, you fool!
See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in Witchouse (1999) (V)See more »

FAQ

How many Universal Studios "Frankenstein" sequels followed this movie?
When is it acceptable to call Frankenstein's monster "Frankenstein"?
How much sex, violence, and profanity are in this movie?
See more »
57 out of 64 people found the following review useful.
Still quality stuff, 23 May 2003
Author: oldreekie546

A brilliant young scientist creates life from the dead but lives to regret it when his creation goes on the rampage.

Though inevitably dated and primitive by modern standards, Frankenstein remains a tremendously impressive film and a tribute to its still somewhat under-rated director, the eccentric Englishman James Whale.

Where so many early talkies were static and wordy, Frankenstein skips unnecessary dialogue and exposition and drives through its plot at a speed that seems almost indecent nowadays. Compared to overblown remakes like Kenneth Branagh's 1994 version, Whale's work now seems like a masterpiece of brevity and minimalism. His constantly moving camera, incisive editing and dramatic use of close-ups are a mile ahead of anything far more prestigious directors were doing at the time. Expressionist photography and eccentric set designs lend atmosphere, menace and help augment some rather ripe performances; a foretaste of the paths Whale would tread in the sequel Bride of Frankenstein four years later.

And then of course there's Karloff. With comparatively few scenes and no dialogue he nonetheless manages to create a complex, intimidating, yet sympathetic creature - one of the great mimes in talking cinema and thanks in no small degree to the freedom given to him under Jack Pierce's iconic make-up.

A historic piece of cinema, and one that still stands the test of time as both art and entertainment.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (433 total) »

Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Frankenstein (1931)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Best Actor to Portray Dr. Frankenstein? KingofWayne66
How did they make Boris Karloff look so tall? patchesdf-62-114042
You gotta admit, the movie does pale when compared to the novel Agent_Mulder89
We shouldn't quibble over the Monster's name! kartoon-1
It's alive, It's alive... snickz
Victor vs. Henry willowtara
See more »

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