Frankenstein (Film)

Sequels and parodies

Frankenstein was followed by a string of sequels, beginning with Bride of Frankenstein (1935), in which Elsa Lanchester plays the Monster's bride.

The next sequel, 1939's Son of Frankenstein, was made, like all those that followed, without Whale or Clive (who had died in 1937). This film also featured Karloff's last full film performance as the Monster. Son of Frankenstein featured Basil Rathbone as Baron Wolf von Frankenstein, and Lionel Atwill as Inspector Krogh.

The Ghost of Frankenstein was released in 1942. The movie features Lon Chaney, Jr. as the Monster, taking over from Boris Karloff, who played the role in the first three films of the series, and Bela Lugosi in his second appearance as the demented Ygor.

The fifth installment, Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man was released in 1943, directed by Roy William Neill, and starring Bela Lugosi as Frankenstein's monster. This is also the sequel to The Wolf Man, with Lon Chaney, Jr. as the Wolf Man. Karloff returned to the series, but not the role, in the 1944 followup, House of Frankenstein, which also featured Chaney, and adds Dracula and a Hunchback for good measure. 1945's House of Dracula continued the theme of combining Universal's three most popular monsters.

Many of the subsequent films which featured Frankenstein's monster demote the creature to a robotic henchman in someone else's plots, such as in its final Universal film appearance in the deliberately farcical Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein (1948).

Karloff would return to the wearing of the makeup and to the role of the monster one last time in an episode of the TV show Route 66 in the early 1960s.

The popular 1960s TV show, The Munsters, depicts the family's father Herman as Frankenstein's monster, who married Count Dracula's daughter. The make-up for Herman is based on the make-up of Boris Karloff.

Mel Brooks's comedy Young Frankenstein parodied elements of the first three Universal Frankenstein movies. Brooks also recreated the movie into a musical of the same name.

A live-action parody film, Frankenweenie, depicting Victor Frankenstein as a modern American boy and his deceased pet dog as the monster, was made by Tim Burton in 1984. Burton remade it as a full-length animated film in 2012.

Frankenstein's assistant

Although Frankenstein's hunchbacked assistant is often referred to as "Igor" in descriptions of the films, he is not so called in the earliest films. In both Frankenstein and Bride of Frankenstein, Frankenstein has an assistant who is played both times by Dwight Frye who is crippled. In the original 1931 film the character is named "Fritz" who is hunchbacked and walks with the aid of a small cane. In Bride of Frankenstein, Frye plays "Karl" a murderer who stands upright but has a lumbering metal brace on both legs that can be heard clicking loudly with every step. Both characters would be killed by Karloff's monster in their respective films. It was not until Son of Frankenstein (1939) that a character called "Ygor" first appears (here played by Bela Lugosi and revived by Lugosi in the Ghost of Frankenstein (1942) after his apparent murder in the earlier film). This character — a deranged blacksmith whose neck was broken and twisted due to a botched hanging — befriends the monster and later helps Dr. Wolf Frankenstein, leading to the "hunchbacked assistant" called "Igor" commonly associated with Frankenstein in pop culture. Frye appears in later films in the series, such as in Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (1943).

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