Movie Review: The Bride of Frankenstein (1935)

by StevenHelmer

A review of the 1935 horror film starring Colin Clive and Boris Karloff.

Synopsis: Henry Frankenstein's monster is believed to be destroyed after being trapped and set ablaze inside a windmill. However, the creature escaped and is once again terrorizing the countryside. The disgraced Dr. Pretorius, seeing an opportunity to improve upon his own attempts at creating life, befriends the monster, kidnaps Henry's wife, Elizabeth, and forces Henry to help him create a mate for the creature.


My wife had to work tonight so, before watching the Green Bay Packers preseason game, I squeezed in a father/daughter movie with my oldest daughter. We had a few movies on our list we hadn't seen before. However, she decided she wanted to watch "The Bride of Frankenstein" again so we did.

I've seen this movie a few different times, including one previous time with my daughter. Overall, while there are some things I'm not a big fan of when it comes to this film, I do think it is a decent movie.

I think the most intriguing character in this film is Dr. Pretorius (Thesiger) because he adds an element of evil to the film. Henry (Clive), of course, is the one who created life in the first movie. But, he immediately began to feel guilty about it right after. Pretorius, in comparison, seems to have no qualms about playing God and his lack of hesitation makes him pretty dangerous, especially when he has the monster (Karloff) as his henchman (though he did seem to have some issues controlling the creature).

Even though she has a surprisingly limited role, especially since the movie is supposed to be about her, I also found I liked the monster's bride (Lanchester). She's still really cool looking, even today, and I loved her surprise reaction to seeing her intended mate.

I think my biggest complaint about this movie is there seems to be an awful lot of filler material. This includes the unnecessary introduction and that weird scene in Dr. Prestorius' laboratory.

I also could have done without the monster learning to talk, at least to the extent he did. It's one thing to learn a couple simple words. But, he was talking really well in a very short amount of time. I think that spoiled the creature's impact as a result.

The Bride of Frankenstein (Universal Studios Classic Monster Collection)

One of the most popular horror classics of all time and an acclaimed sequel to the original Frankenstein. The legendary Boris Karloff reprises his role as the screen's most unde...

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Final Opinion

The movie definitely could have done just as well without that introduction and I really couldn't see the point of having the monster learning to talk (everything he demanded could have been communicated other ways). Overall, however, I do think this movie is a classic for good reasons and, if you haven't ever seen it, it's worth taking the time to watch it.

My Grade: A

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Updated: 08/12/2016, StevenHelmer
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DerdriuMarriner on 03/30/2022

StevenHelmer, Thank you for practical information, pretty pictures and product lines.
The library system here does have The Bride of Frankenstein amongst its Blu-ray and DVD collections. So I expect to be watching it along with other films that you all have reviewed, sometime soon, after Lent ends.

Who would be an effective candidate to re-interpret Elsa Lanchester, and what would think of a colorized reboot or remake?

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