7.8/10
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Frankenstein (1931)

Passed | | Drama, Horror, Sci-Fi | 21 November 1931 (USA)
Trailer
1:38 | Trailer
Dr. Frankenstein dares to tamper with life and death by creating a human monster out of lifeless body parts.

Director:

James Whale

Writers:

John L. Balderston (based upon the composition by), Mary Shelley (from the novel by) (as Mrs. Percy B. Shelley) | 4 more credits »
4 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Colin Clive ... Henry Frankenstein
Mae Clarke ... Elizabeth
John Boles ... Victor Moritz
Boris Karloff ... The Monster (as Boris Karloff)
Edward Van Sloan ... Doctor Waldman
Frederick Kerr ... Baron Frankenstein
Dwight Frye ... Fritz
Lionel Belmore ... The Burgomaster
Marilyn Harris ... Little Maria
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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:

He Lives! He Walks! He Sees! (print ad - Lubbock Morning Avalanche - Palace Theatre - Lubbock, Texas - January 7, 1932) See more »


Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In 1991, Frankenstein (1931) was added to the National Film Registry by the United States Library of Congress. See more »

Goofs

After Henry lets Elizabeth, Victor, and Dr. Waldman into his lab, there is a 2-shot of Henry and Waldman (seated) and in the upper left the shadow of a crew persons arm moves in and out of the Frame. See more »

Quotes

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

Crazy Credits

In the opening credits: The Monster - ? See more »

Alternate Versions

SPOILERS: The picture was scripted and filmed with Dr. Frankenstein seeming to die in the mill with his creation, but was instead released with a hastily re-shot happy ending, wherein Henry survives to marry Elizabeth (see "Trivia"). However, the sequel, The Bride of Frankenstein literally followed the first scenario, and consequently just before "Bride" opened this film was reissued with the original finale restored; "Frankenstein" was seen this way in all subsequent theatrical releases of the old Hollywood era, but when the entire package of classic Universal horror films was made available to television in the 1950s, the prints of "Frankenstein" carried the happy ending of the initial release, and the incompatibility with the opening scene of "Bride..." confused new viewers. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Critic's Choice (1963) See more »

Soundtracks

Grand Appassionato
(uncredited)
Music by Giuseppe Becce
[End title & end cast music]
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User Reviews

Wow! What a movie! A horror classic and still pure entertainment.
16 April 2003 | by InfofreakSee all my reviews

'Frankenstein', like Todd Browning's 'Dracula' released earlier the same year (1931, a landmark year which also saw the release of Fritz Lang's dazzling serial killer thriller 'M'!), is an important movie and should be compulsory viewing for any SF/horror fan, but it isn't a dull movie to be studied, it is a wonderfully entertaining movie to be ENJOYED. Okay, the modern viewer has to try and watch it without jaded and cynical eyes and take it in its historical context to really appreciate it, but that isn't difficult. The acting is often hokey, the special effects, which were astonishing 70+ years ago, may look a little primitive by our standards, and the movie isn't anywhere near as terrifying to us as it was to 1930s movie audiences, but even so, I can't see how anyone can not LOVE this movie! Director James Whale was a lot more sophisticated and original than Todd Browning, and as much as I enjoy 'Dracula', 'Frankenstein' is a much better movie, and the best from this era, not counting its brilliant sequel 'Bride Of Frankenstein' which to mind mind actually surpasses it. Talented character actors Edward Van Sloan and Dwight Frye, both from 'Dracula', reappear in different but similar roles, and Colin Clive is fine as Henry Frankenstein, the prototype mad scientist, but the real star of the show, and the main reason this movie has lived for so many years, is the utterly superb performance by the legendary Boris Karloff as The Monster. I think Karloff is amazing in this and doesn't get the respect he deserves because many dismiss it as "just a horror movie". 'Frankenstein' is one of the most important and influential movies ever made, and is one movie I NEVER tire of no matter how many times I watch it, and James Whale is one of the most underrated directors of all time, looking at his innovative work in this, 'The Invisible Man', and especially 'Bride Of Frankenstein', the greatest sequel in the history of motion pictures. What a movie! What a director!


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Official Sites:

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Country:

USA

Language:

English | Latin

Release Date:

21 November 1931 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Frankenstein See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$291,000 (estimated)

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,626
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Pictures See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.20 : 1
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