- Acting of Lead Performers
- Acting of Supporting Cast
- Music Score
- Title Sequence
- Historical Importance
- Would You Recommend?
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great horror film
I'm not a fan of horror movies involving human-like monsters. However, this film is amazing. It takes a great deal of talent to create a film with a menacing monster and then create audience sympathy for the creature. Boris Karloff is terrifying with those outstretched arms as he threateningly walks toward the camera. However, those outstretched arms are also pleading for understanding and human connection. It's not hard to miss the fact that the monster is really an innocent victim and the real criminal mind is in the head of the monster's creator. This movie is truly an essential. The creepy castle and laboratory, the weird town and its terrified people, the monster coming to life and then the awful scenes of the villagers hounding the terrified creature to its death--all of this combines to make an outstanding film. After watching this and The Bride of Frankenstein, it's fun to watch Young Frankenstein and see the original 1931 sets used again in one of the funniest films ever made.
- Michael Whitty
A scientist creates a monster-man but gives him a criminal brain too. Here is the original "Frankenstein" from 1931 as this was the one that started the "Frankenstein" mania as there have been many of these since. This was black-and-white before color films were developed more but the stress on characters was more. A part of the "Frankenstein" intrigue was Boris Karloff walking menacingly with arms stretched out and nobody could stop him. Dr. Frankenstein's incredible creation served fictional ideas well.
- malcolm alford
This movie is great, love to see this everytime it comes on. It a must see around Halloween . Boris Karloff was the best when it came to playing Frankenstein in 1931. These black and white movies are the best.
It's Like Going To A Serious Car Accident
- J.D. Jitters
Frankenstein, is like going to a serious car accident, your curiosity gets the best of you---and then you walk away wishing you had not gone there in the first place and then you take that second look. You never forget it!
- James Shafer
I read an article on the web that little Maria Harris was thrown into the water several times for the right take for the scene. They did this for Maria Harris was a good swimmer. I saw this movie when I was about 7 years old.... James Shafer
One Of My Favorite Films
- Alex Krajci
1931's Frankenstein Is One Of My Favorite Films, I Like It Because This Movie Came Out The Same Year As Dracula.
Am I mistaken or did this movie's opening credits refer to not Mary but Percy Shelley as the novelist? Glaring error. Also, one of the womenfolk appeared to be a flapper, which weren't around in 18th century England.
Having seen this film at least once a year for the last 60 years, I finally got around to reading Mary Shelley's book. Like the film, the book too is a classic but they are so dissimilar that I have often wondered how on earth the writers of the film managed to actually come up with a screenplay that is this iconic. James Whale had such vision that it is unimaginable to me that he didn't have an actual hand in this screenplay. His direction of this film is literally "picture perfect." It's easy to understand why I've enjoyed his other films, e.g. "Waterloo Bridge." It is a shame he retired, or was forced to retire, at such a young age. I would have loved to have seen what other masterpieces he would have given us for the history of film. "Frankenstein" is truly his crowning glory, though!
FRANKENSTEIN.........still the best UPDATE.
- Michael Steven
Last evening (Oct.24,2012),I FINALLY got to see a recent reissue of James Whale's "FRANKENSTEIN",on the BIG screen.Whatever parties at Universal who were involved in restoring this film,OUTSTANDING!This film is 81 years old,as of this writing.Yet the print I viewed,looked BRAND NEW.NO scratches,dots,pops,hisses...........NONE.It looked in absolute mint condition.However,I suspect that this was a device for WE,the viewing public to go out & purchase Universal's ULTIMATE MONSTER COLLECTION,which as of this writing,is also available.I would be less than honest by saying..................that if THIS particular film was THAT good,I'd like to see what else Universal did to their other classic horror films.Restoration can indeed make or break an old film such as "FRANKENSTEIN"Visually,you will see the very pupils in the actor's eyes.It was THAT exact,& THAT good.You'll also see Jack Pierce's iconic make-up as you'll never have seen it before.LOTS of detail,& highlights.Dare I say that the film was that precise & dead on,visually.In the future,when you have a chance,try to make the time & go out & see an old classic such as this.It's MUCH different viewing it in a theatre,as opposed to viewing it at home on television.It is INDEED,a shared experience.
Frankenstein.....STILL THE BEST!!!!
- Michael Steven
I DIDNT GET TO VIEW THIS MOVIE UNTIL 1970.AS WITH MOST VIEWERS AT THE TIME,ALL WE HAD WAS THE "CENSORED" VERSION.IT HAS AN ODD HISTORY TO IT.THE FILM MADE TONS OF MONEY HERE IN AMERICA WHEN IT WAS RELEASED IN LATE 1931,BUT IN PARTS OF THE WORLD,IT WAS EITHER NOT SHOWN AT ALL,OR THE FILM WAS CUT IN HALF,AS IT WAS IN ENGLAND. THEN,IN THE LATE 30'S,THE ORIGINAL PRINT WAS CUT TO PIECES,BECAUSE SOME SCENES WERE DEEMED "TOO VIOLENT IN CONTEXT" TO SHOW THE VIEWING PUBLIC,WHEN THEY'D BEEN THERE FOR YEARS.SAD REALITY IS THAT THIS WAS THE ONLY VERSION WE HAD FOR DECADES,UNTIL THE LATE 80'S, WHEN (PARDON THE PUN)BITS & PIECES WERE REINSERTED INTO THE ORIGINAL PRINT.IT WASN'T UNTIL THE 90'S WHEN WE HAVE AS CLOSE TO A "RESTORED VERSION" AS WERE GOING TO GET. COLIN CLIVE WAS INTENDED TO BEING THE STAR OF THIS FILM,BUT WOULD'NT YOU IT,THE MONSTER(OR AS HE'S REFERRED TO IN THE BOOK AS THE CREATURE)STRIKES BACK.RIGHT UP TO THE END OF HIS LIFE,BORIS KARLOFF NEVER GOT TIRED OF SPEAKING ABOUT THE MONSTER,& HOW THAT ROLE CHANGED HIS LIFE,LITERALLY.YES,THE FILM HAS AN ODDNESS TO IT AS IT HAS NO BACKGROUND MUSIC,ANOTHER PLUS FOR IT.THE REST OF THE CAST,MAE CLARKE,JOHN BOLES,DWIGHT FRYE,EDWARD VAN SLOAN,ETC.,ARE ALSO PLUSSES FOR THIS FILM. THE NOW CLASSIC MAKE-UP WAS CREATED BY JACK PIERCE.JACK WOULD LATER ON CREATE ALL OF THE CLASSIC UNIVERSAL MONSTERS THAT WE ALL KNOW & LOVE.ALL IN ALL THE MAKE UP TOOK 3 WEEKS TO REACH THE STAGE THAT ULTIMATELY BECAME THE ICON IT IS TODAY.JACK & BORIS REALLY SEEMED TO GET ON WELL,CONSIDERING THE STORIES WE HEAR NOW ABOUT HOW JACK COULD BE VERY DEMANDING OF THE PEOPLE HE WAS GOING TO MAKE UP. THIS FILM IS NOW 81 YEARS OLD,& IT STILL BLOWS ME AWAY.JAMES WHALE MAY NOT HAVE BEEN HAUNTED BY THE MONSTER,BUT THE MONSTER CONTINUES TO HAUNT US TODAY.
- Dashiell Barnes
If given my way, Boris Karloff would have won the 'Oscar' as 'Best Actor' for his performance in this film. I found that whenever Karloff wasn't around, the other scenes were not as good. He is able to display so much about the 'monster' with his face, body & limited vocabulary. The art-direction is beautiful as we see the dead mountains at night scenes & the excitement during a wedding in a German village. A good horror film that is still viewed & that still can have Karloff keep you up at night, despite a lack of a musical score. I give it 4/5.
- Jack The Hat
The first time I had seen this film, it was shortly after my grand mother died. I had never been to a wake before and my mother told me to kiss Grand Mom good by. EKKKKK!, she was so cold and I was so scared. I became very frightened of dead bodies ever since. So when I saw "Frankstein' and this was after the funeral, all I could think of was the cold dead body of my grand mother---nothing scared me more and nothing ever has.
Great horror film... Colin Clive is so creapy.
The Grandest of all horrors
Boris Karloff gives one of the greatest performances of all time. Arguably, this and "The Bride of Frankenstein" are the pinnacle of the classic Universal horror films of the '30s and '40s.
A Modern Fairy Tale
- Dan Grissom
Director James Whales' 1931 'Frankenstein' plays like a modern fairy tale. The time period is ambiguous, the location is somewhere in Europe, and some sets are filmed out doors and some have obvious painted back drops. Released about nine months after Universal's first sound horror film ('Dracula'), 'Frankenstein' really set the studio in motion to produce all the classics horror films of the 1930s and 1940s. Boris Karloff is unforgettable as the minsunderstood monster and Colin Clive is convincing as the title character, Henry Frankenstein; the film is NOT named after the monster, but most people think it is, and probably because Karloff steals the show so to speak. If you have not seen this movie do yourself a favor and take about 70 minutes or so and prepare to have a 'modern fairy tale' unfold before your eyes.
- Mark Sutch
- James Higgins
This is certainly still the best Frankenstein film of the all. This classic is excellent, outstanding character development, eerie as well as touching. The cast is terrific, especially Boris Karloff as the title character. Superb atmosphere.
Boris Karloff was a great actor
We always wait for Frankenstein to come on every year, also his other movies. We have been fans for many years.
- Oliver Cutshaw
I have been a devoted fan of this film since I was a small boy. Has fascinating odd touches and strange performances (especially Dwight Frye). Gothic sets, somewhat stagey dialogue, and macabre sense of humor. It is fun thoroughout and Boris makes his scenes moving, eerie, and wonderfully compelling. Cannot say it is a great film and I am not sure it holds its power over younger audiences but it still has its quirky, deliciously morbid charm.
- Laura J
This classic gem made Boris Karloff so popular they didnt even have to use his first name in the next movie as Karloff said it all. This movie was great and spawned off sequels but none as great as the original. I know it sounds crazy but there are times when you actually feel bad for Frankenstein as you will see when you watch it. Dont miss this wonderful film.
scared me to death
- Spencer Dunnings
I say frankenstein when i was 3 years old. i was in to these old universal horror films, but the wolf man is my favorite. Boris Karloff and Colin Clive and James Whale Rock!!!!!!!!!!