By Chase Agnew (Wenatchee, WA, US)
Imagine if you will a 19-year-old man going thrift shop to thrift shop looking for VHS tapes and he finally stumbles upon one of which he has looked for, for quite some time. Well, ladies and gentleman I finally found it yesterday. Frankenstein’s Monster is one of the most iconic monsters of the 20th century. The plot revolves around Dr. Frankenstein defying god by bringing a man back from the dead, and this guy is not happy to be back. So let’s talk about it.
Atmosphere: The sets and the tone of this movie skyrocket it near the top of my favorites list. Older movies liked to build tension and have the atmosphere and music make the viewer more and more anxious. This movie is a testament to that fact, and it’s condensed into a nice hour and ten minutes of amazing storytelling.
The Monster: The Monster, also mistakenly referred to as Frankenstein, is one of the most iconic figures in movie history. One of my favorite things about it is that it’s shrouded in mystery, even the opening credits don’t reveal the identity of the character! And the most interesting part is that he’s actually a gentle giant and just gets put into shittier and shittier predicaments.
Sound Effects: The sound is spot on, there is music when there needs to be, and sound effects that made this movie stand out for the time period. More importantly, this was the movie that originated the cliché of CASTLE THUNDER, an overused sound effect in most horror movies that followed it.
The Set: There is so much going on in every scene, there’s always something to look at and enjoy. My favorite set has to be the lab scene where Frankenstein creates his Monster. I can’t imagine how much time and effort went into making this one set, but somehow it is perfect for the mood and tone of the movie up to that point.
Slow Burning: I found myself looking at the clock a lot and was surprised by how slow time was passing as I watched it. I certainly didn’t want it to be over sooner but I would’ve loved if it went just a tad faster. But I guess that’s just part of the atmosphere of the movie.
Not Enough Monster Time: I do and don’t care about the other characters, I wanted to see The Monster more often and I would’ve loved if scenes like the wedding were either cut down or omitted entirely. I would’ve liked to see him be more childlike since he is new to the world, but oh well.
A definite classic, Frankenstein (1931) is one movie that I was really looking forward to reviewing and wanted to talk about from the start. The only reason I didn’t do it sooner was because I wanted to wait until I could get it on physical media, and just my luck I happened to find it on my favorite machine, the VHS. This movie is dark and tense and genuinely scary at times, and I found myself falling in love with horror movies all over again. You need to watch this movie, and if you already have I hope it impacted you as much as it did me.
You should: Definitely Watch It