The Bride of Frankenstein (1935)
Directed by James Whale
Written by William Hurlbut from Mary Shelley’s novel
Starring Boris Karloff, Elsa Lanchester, Colin Clive, Ernest Thesiger
PG | 35mm | 75min.
Autumn signals the arrival of chilly weather, falling leaves, early sunsets and the best holiday of them all: Halloween.
Deep in its secret laboratory underneath the streets of Roncesvalles Ave., The Revue has concocted a lineup of spine-tingling films to celebrate the Halloween season.
On October 29, Creepy Classics, which launched last year at Cine-Cycle, moves to its new home at the Revue Cinema. By celebrating the spirit of showmanship, admission grants you access to much more than a movie: prior to the feature the audience will be subject to a chilling programme of cartoons, shorts, and ghoulish trailers – all on 16mm! Expect to see many of your favourite monsters on the big screen! And as an added bonus, Rue Morgue Magazine has some prizes to give away!
For our inaugural screening at the Revue, we present James Whale’s Bride of Frankenstein, considered by many to be the crown jewel of the golden age of Universal Horror. When his wife is kidnapped by the Mephistophelian Dr. Pretorius (Thesiger), Dr. Frankenstein (Clive) is forced to help build a mate for the Monster (Boris Karloff) he thought destroyed at the end of the first film.
Prior to the film’s 1935 release, Whale directed other horror films (The Old Dark House and The Invisible Man) but objected to a Frankenstein sequel until script demands were met. What results is a film fullof humourous moments, most of which are delivered by Thesiger and cooky stock-actor Una O’Connor; and plenty of pathos, including the Monster’s friendship with a blind hermit, which would later be parodied by Gene Hackman in Mel Brooks’ Young Frankenstein.
Boris Karloff’s Monster, appearing slightly more cadaverous due to Jack Pierce’s masterful makeup, is once again touching and haunting. Clive, a notorious alcoholic who died a few years later, disliked playing in horror films, which may have contributed to the tortured, maniacal performances in both of Whale’s films and Karl Freund’s Mad Love. And the beautiful Elsa Lanchester, in one of her few horror roles, plays both the iconic bride and Mary Shelley in the opening sequence. Featuring a spectacular score by Franz Waxman, Bride of Frankenstein – like The Godfather Part II – is one of those rare sequels to surpass the strength of the original.
The Bride of Frankenstein screens Thursday, October 26 at 7pm. Admission is $7 for members. Memberships available at the door.
But that’s not all! Accompanying Creepy Classics are rare 35mm screenings of John Carpenter’s Prince of Darkness (Thursday, 9pm) and Brian De Palma’s Carrie (Wednesday, 7pm).