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Son of Frankenstein (1939)

Approved | | Drama, Horror, Sci-Fi | 13 January 1939 (USA)
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.



(suggested by the story written in 1816) (as Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley), (screenplay) (as Willis Cooper)

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1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Donnie Dunagan ...
Edgar Norton ...
Perry Ivins ...
Emil Lang
Michael Mark ...
Ewald Neumüller
Caroline Frances Cooke ...
Frau Neumüller (as Caroline Cooke)
Burgher (as Lorimer Johnson)


Wolf von Frankenstein returns to the Baronial manor from the United States with his wife Elsa and son Peter. He not made welcome by the locals who are still terrified of his father's works and the monster he created. The local Burgomaster gives him a sealed briefcase left by his father and inside, Wolf finds his father's scientific notes. At the manor house he meets his father's assistant Igor who has a surprise for him: the monster his father created is still alive, though in some sort of coma. Wolf's initial attempts to re-animate the creature seem to fail but when Peter says he saw a giant in the woods, it appears he's met success. When people are mysteriously killed in the village there is little doubt that the monster is responsible. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The black shadows of the past bred this half-man . . . half-demon ! . . . creating a new and terrible juggernaut of destruction !


Drama | Horror | Sci-Fi


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Parents Guide:





Release Date:

13 January 1939 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

De zoon van Frankenstein  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


The name of the town where the action takes place is "Goldstadt" in the first two films in the series, Frankenstein (1931) and Bride of Frankenstein (1935). Here it is called "Frankenstein." In the two subsequent films, the stories would take place in another fictional town, "Vasaria" (or "Visaria"). See more »


Although the culture is Germanic, Police Inspector Krogh refers to his men as "gendarmes" - which is French. See more »


[first lines]
[a child picks up a rock to throw at Ygor's window]
Younger Brother: Ain't you afraid?
Older Brother: Of old Ygor? No!
[Ygor stares from the window]
Older Brother: Oh!
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Edited into The Son of Frankenstein (1966) See more »


Sailing, Sailing, Over the Bounding Main
Written by Godfrey Marks
Sung a cappella by Donnie Dunagan
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

27 September 2003 | by See all my reviews

The last Boris Karloff Frankenstein. The Baron's son Wolf (Basil Rathbone) comes to move to his late father's estate--a big beautiful castle. Inside he meets Ygor (Bela Lugosi) a crippled madman who wants to revive the Monster (Karloff). Naturally everything goes wrong.

Elaborate sequel to the series--the last really good one that Universal spent money on. The sets are huge and incredibly bizarre (note the huge wooden stairs going to the second floor). Also they're shot using weird camera angles and making very good use of light and darkness. There's ALWAYS something to look at in this movie. The script is intelligent and literate with almost uniformly good performances. Basil Rathbone chews the scenery as Wolf. Josephine Hutchinson is given nothing to do as his wife--but she does it beautifully. Lionel Atwill (already typecast as a policeman) is good and very amusing with his wooden hand. Lugosi is really creepy as Ygor. Best of all is Karloff--he uses pantomime throughout the whole picture (even though in the previous "Bride of..." he had learned to speak) and gets every meaning across. He doesn't even really start going until an hour in but he makes up for it!

The only debit is Frankenstein's son played by an annoying child actor named Donnie Dunagan. His acting is laughable (even for a child) and he speaks with a distinct Southern accent!!! Then again he WAS from Texas.

Still, a really good, spooky, elaborate horror film. Highly recommended.

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