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Frankenstein: The True Story (1973)

Not Rated | | Drama, Horror, Sci-Fi | TV Movie 5 August 1976
When the brilliant but unorthodox scientist Dr. Victor Frankenstein rejects the artificial man that he has created, the Creature escapes and later swears revenge.

Director:

Jack Smight

Writers:

Christopher Isherwood (teleplay), Don Bachardy (teleplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
James Mason ... Dr. John Polidori
Leonard Whiting ... Dr. Victor Frankenstein
David McCallum ... Dr. Henri Clerval
Jane Seymour ... Agatha / Prima
Nicola Pagett ... Elizabeth Fanschawe
Michael Sarrazin ... The Creature
Michael Wilding ... Sir Richard Fanshawe
Clarissa Kaye-Mason ... Lady Fanschawe (as Clarissa Kaye)
Agnes Moorehead ... Mrs. Blair
Margaret Leighton ... Francoise DuVal
Ralph Richardson ... Mr. Lacey
John Gielgud ... Chief Constable
Tom Baker ... Sea Captain
Julian Barnes Julian Barnes ... Young Man
Arnold Diamond ... Passenger in Coach
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Storyline

When the brilliant but unorthodox scientist Dr. Victor Frankenstein rejects the artificial man that he has created, the Creature escapes and later swears revenge.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

He created the perfect man - then something went wrong.

Genres:

Drama | Horror | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Andrew Sinclair had a similar project, "Byron's Evil", which ran out of funding when this movie went into production. Oliver Reed was to play Byron, David Hemmings the monster, and Anna was to be Mary Shelley. See more »

Goofs

When Frankenstein dissolves the severed arm with acid, the arm as first shown at the beginning of the scene is significantly different in appearance than the one which is shown actually being dissolved. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Victor Frankenstein: Why can't I create life out of death? Out of my brother's corpse?
Elizabeth Fanschawe: That's how Satan tempted our Lord.
Dr. Victor Frankenstein: If Satan could teach me how to bring William to life again, I'd gladly become his pupil.
See more »

Alternate Versions

The original miniseries presentation featured a prologue with James Mason visiting the grave of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley. See more »

Connections

Version of Frankenstein (1984) See more »

Soundtracks

The Marriage of Figaro
Music by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
See more »

User Reviews

 
Frankenstein: The True Story (1973) ***
1 October 2006 | by JoeKarlosiSee all my reviews

A two part television movie which claimed to tell, for the first time anywhere, the genuinely faithful tale of the man who made a creature, exactly as its writer, teenaged Mary Shelley, first concocted it. Well, it may be helpful going in to be forewarned that this isn't really the "true story," but it comes close and what matters most is that it's a good film, albeit one that's three hours long.

In this version, young Victor Frankenstein (Leonard Whiting) is a medical student thirsting for knowledge, which he gets from the wildly eccentric Dr. Henry Clerval (David McCallum). Clerval has devised a method of restoring dead insects back to life, and his greatest achievement comes when he reanimates a man's severed arm. Frankenstein teams up with Clerval and they are just about to proceed with the ultimate experiment of assembling a complete man from dead bodies and making it live, when Henry dies and Victor is forced to work alone (I'll bet you never knew it wasn't all Frankenstein's idea). The final product is a perfectly attractive male creation (Michael Sarrazin) who has been given Clerval's brain and instantly bonds with Victor, his creator. Frankenstein begins to neglect his fiancé Elizabeth (Nicola Pagett) while taking the time to refine his new Adam. Unbeknownst to Victor, before Clerval died he tried to warn Frankenstein that the animation process performed on the first severed arm was actually reversing itself and the flesh was deteriorating. In a short period of time, the once-handsome creature begins to show signs of his skin rotting and upon witnessing this, Frankenstein suddenly loses all interest in his creation and abandons him. The rest of the film carries on with the scorned monster's journey to punish his master. He meets up with a nasty and cunning former associate of Clerval, the elder Dr. Polidori (James Mason), who blackmails Frankenstein into constructing a female named Prima (played by Jane Seymour).

This is a lush and well-crafted Victorian period piece, and the story of unrequited love between the creature and his creator is at the core of it. For those who up till now have only been familiar with the classic Boris Karloff image of the flat-headed monster with big boots and bolts in his neck, this is something else entirely. It's touching but also horrifying at times, with a good cast. In addition to Michael Sarrazin's sympathetic work as the creature, David McCallum's obsessive Clerval and James Mason's unscrupulous Polidori (presumably the Ernest Thesiger character in this one) are the best performances. *** out of ****


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Details

Country:

UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

5 August 1976 (Uruguay) See more »

Also Known As:

Frankenstein: The True Story See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Universal Television See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (theartrical release)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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