This is a documentary on the making of the masterpiece "Frankenstein" from 1931. Every aspect of the above movie is covered and detailed. From the initial involvement from director Robert ... See full summary »
Starting with The Wolf Man (in 1941), Universal Studios made five movies featuring The Wolf Man, a character portrayed by Lon Chaney, Jr. Monster by Moonlight! explores these movies. Rick ... See full summary »
I like this brief making-of video documentary a bit better than the others that David J. Skal, author of "Hollywood Gothic," made for extras on Universal's home video collections of their classic monster movies that I've seen thus far. The other ones follow a basic mini-pattern akin to Skal's aforementioned book, tracing the literary and theatrical origins of the film before listing individual contributions to its production and how good it all is (except for the 1931 English-language "Dracula," for which Skal isn't a fan--and for reasons I disagree with, but that's another story I've already mentioned in my reviews for the Dracula films and the 1999 "Road to Dracula" doc). But, "Bride of Frankenstein" (1935) is a sequel and rather original film, plus Skal would do the usually-patterned doc for the 1931 film in "The Frankenstein Files: How Hollywood Made a Monster" (2002). Instead, here, there's a cogent thesis regarding the film besides that it's just good.
That thesis is clearly stated near the end, that "Bride" is an interesting example of how a director (James Whale, in this case) injects his personality into a picture. Supporting this, other films by the director are mentioned, including his earlier mixes of horror and humor in "The Old Dark House" (1932) and "The Invisible Man" (1933). His reluctance to direct a Frankenstein sequel and his insistence of controlling the production, including the script, when he decided to accept the project is also pointed out, as are the film's camp and gay subtext and the relation between a film about a monster as an outsider and a director who was likewise ostracized for being homosexual. As well, the doc also covers the contributions by others in the production, including in makeup, sets, cinematography, the musical score and the cast. Many clips from another Universal film, "Gods and Monsters" (1999) are shown, there are the usual talking heads and some interesting information about cuts made to the film, some technical aspects and the creation of the female creature.
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