MMM Day 2: #335 -- The Bride of Frankenstein (1935)

Director: James Whale
Rating: 5 / 5

I first saw this many years ago and, even though I didn't remember everything about it, I did remember that it was very sad. The first one was sad in how misunderstood The Monster was; but this one is on another level entirely. It really tugged at my heartsrings, and actually brought tears to my eyes. The Monster definitely proved himself a very tragic character here, as if there was any doubt. This, along with the first, doesn't exactly feel like a horror movie to me. Sure, there are mad scientists, and the monster that came from their experiments, and all that good stuff. But The Monster isn't the villain at all. The townspeople are the real monsters here, because they refuse to even try to understand him. They see something different, they don't understand it, and so they attack it. They're bullies. If they'd taken the time to get to know him, they'd realize that he meant no harm to anyone. It's a tragic, dramatic love story...with monsters. The best kind!

So, at the end of the first movie, we saw the angry mob chase Henry and his Monster to a windmill and try to kill them with fire. They thought they were successful, but they, of course, were not. Henry was injured, but The Monster was only plagued with anger. At first, it seemed like he'd changed; like he was so angry that he didn't even care anymore, because he was attacking people for no reason. But then I realized that these were the people that had chased him there and set fire to him. He wanted revenge. Once he got away from those people, he changed back into the big teddy bear that I've always loved. He actually made a friend in this one: a lonely, blind musician. He was drawn to the man because of his music, and the man was extremely kind to him. He was blind to his "hideous" features, but he wasn't blind to his sweet nature. The man took care of him, fed him, gave him wine and cigars, and even taught him how to speak. At one point, The Monster began to cry, because he'd finally found a friend. But of course, all good things must come to an end. A couple of hunters wandered by and tried to attack The Monster. Afraid, he thrashed about and ended up setting fire to the old man's shack. Fortunately, the hunters had gotten the old man out before the fire consumed everything.

Meanwhile, back at the Frankenstein Castle, Henry was recovering, and he and Elizabeth finally got married. He was visited by Dr. Pretorious, a man with his own plan. He was able to create these little miniature people in glass bottles, and he said that he grew them himself, rather than creating them from dead parts. How he did this, I have no idea, but it was definitely interesting. What he wanted to do was combine their separate brands of genius to create another creature: a bride for The Monster. Henry wanted no part of it, however. He resisted, until Pretorious brought The Monster to his house and kidnapped Elizabeth. So, Henry agreed in order to get his girl back. It was successful, and the bride was born. But she, like everyone else, was terrified of The Monster. Heartbroken, The Monster decided that he no longer wished to live, and he planned on taking his new Bride, as well as Dr. Pretorious down with him. He actually let Henry and Elizabeth leave, though I don't really understand why. I feel like he was angry with Henry for creating and then abandoning him. The only explanation that I can come up with is this: The Monster knew that they were in love, something he wished desperately to feel, and he thought that they should be able to enjoy that for as long as possible. He's a monster, sure, but he's a compassionate soul. I've always preferred this one to the first, probably because, even though I'm a horror lover, I'm also a sucker for a good love story. This one is tragic, but it's still a love story. It evoked emotions within me that I've been through in my life: abandonment, loneliness, and misunderstanding.

In the first movie, Boris Karloff's name wasn't included in the credits. Where it should have been, there was a question mark instead. Here, he's credited as just Karloff. At the end of the credits, it says: "The monster's mate: ?" So, they stuck with that little tactic, which I found to be really cool in the first movie. Of course, now we know that The Bride was Elsa Lanchester (who also played Mary Shelley, which I have just now realized), but I just think it's an awesome scare tactic. I think more movies should do this; it adds some mystery.


  1. I loved this movie back in the day. It's been far too long actually. X

  2. I am ashamed to say I have never seen this movie! You know when you assume the plot is going to be a particular way??? Well I had made a few assumptions about this movie and you blew them all out of the water! I have to watch now... like really!
    Here's my day III MMM at Design du Jour.

  3. I haven't seen this one either! Don't stone me! ;)
    I love what they did in the credits though . . . mysterious!
    Here's my MMM'S for today Carmen Jenner Author and Book Me!
    Happy Hopping! =D

  4. This is my favorite Frankenstein movie! I really wish they would of given the Bride a lot more screen time. Even though she did a great job in the amount of time she was on air, it still would of been great to see more of her. Check out my blog for MMM! :D http://memoirsofascreamqueen.blogspot.com/