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House of Frankenstein (1944) - Plot Summary Poster

Plot

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Summaries

  • After escaping from an asylum the mad Dr. Niemann and his hunch back assistant revive Count Dracula, the Wolf Man and the Frankenstein monster in order to extract revenge upon their many enemies.

  • Dr. Niemann regales his hunchbacked cellmate, Daniel, with tales of how he had nearly put the brain of a human into a dog. This gives Daniel hope. If brain switches are possible, that would mean his own brain could be removed to a better home than the misshapen body he's now trapped in. A thunderstorm destroys their prison, and they escape to find refuge in the company of a traveling carnival. The carnival owner has possession of the skeleton of Count Dracula, who can be revived by removing the wooden stake from the area of his heart. Niemann has the hunchback kill the owner, and then resurrects Dracula to kill those who had sent him to prison. But Dracula has other plans. Later, Niemann and the hunchback encounter a gypsy caravan where Daniel falls in love with a beautiful gypsy girl. She travels with them to Frankenstein's ruined castle, where they find Frankenstein's monster and the Wolf Man frozen in ice. Niemann thaws them out, finding the Monster fairly inert and the Wolf Man changed back to the tormented Larry Talbot. To Daniel's misery, the gypsy girl falls in love with Talbot, unaware of his lupine alter ego. Meanwhile, Niemann promises both the hunchback and Talbot new bodies. But as usual, the bad doctor cannot be trusted.

  • An evil scientist and his hunchbacked assistant escape from prison and encounter Dracula, the Wolf Man and Frankenstein's Monster.


Spoilers

The synopsis below may give away important plot points.

Synopsis

  • It's some 20 years after the Frankenstein monster and the wolfman met their demise in "Frankenstein Meets the Wolfman" (1943), but Dr Neimann [Boris Karloff] and his hunchback assistant Daniel [J Carroll Naish], currently locked in jail, still plan for a way to cure Daniel's deformity by Dr Frankenstein's operation. When lightning destroys the jail wall, they escape. They link up with Dr Lampini's traveling horror show, and Daniel kills Lampini [George Zucco] so that Neimann can take his place. They plan to head "towards those for whom I have UNloving memories."

    First stop is Regalberg where they revive Dracula [John Carradine], in the guise of Baron Latoes from Transylvania, who kills the Burgermeister who originally put Neimann in jail. Dracula is re-skeletonized by the morning sun as he attempts to crawl back into his coffin.

    Next, they head for the village of Frankenstein to search for Dr Frankenstein's records. Here, Daniel rescues and falls in love with gypsy girl Ilonka (Elena Verdugo]. They find the ice cave where the Frankenstein monster [Glenn Strange] and the wolfman [Lon Chaney, Jr] lie frozen, revive the wolfman, and enlist his help in return for a cure if he will help in transporting the monster to Neimann's old laboratory in Visaria.

    On the way to Visaria, Daniel and Neimann care for the monster while Larry Talbot [the wolfman] and Ilonka drive the wagon and fall in love, much to Daniel's dismay. They also kidnap two of Neimann's nemeses--Herr Ullman [Frank Reicher] and Herr Strauss [Michael Mark] -- because Neimann plans to give Ullman's brain to the monster, the monster's brain to Talbot, and the wolfman's brain to Strauss. Daniel begs for Talbot's body so he can have Ilonka, but Neimann says no. Daniel attempts to warn Ilonka about Talbot's wolfman side, but she refuses to believe him. To release his anger, Daniel whips the supposedly unconscious monster.

    The full moon rises that night, and Talbot changes to the wolfman. The next day he confesses to Ilonka. She vows to release him. That evening, Neimann finally gets down to business. He revives the monster but not soon enough. Talbot changes into the wolfman and attacks Ilonka who shoots him; they both die. Distraught, Daniel attacks Neimann, the monster kills Daniel, the villagers see the lights flickering in Neimann's laboratory windows and attack the monster, who carries Neimann's body into the swamp where they both get sucked into quicksand. [Original synopsis by bj_kuehl.]

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