Thursday, October 27, 2016
Halloween Watch: The Bride of Frankenstein (1935)
Watching a Frankenstein/ Bride of Frankenstein (1935) double-bill has become my personal Halloween tradition. I'd already watched Frankenstein this year, and so needed to work in Bride of, which has been tough with the Cubs actually making it into the World Series. I mean, usually by early October, I'm kinda done with baseball and my football watching is contained to Saturdays.
But, what would Halloween even be (for me) without The Bride of Frankenstein? I don't even want to know.
The movie remains horrific, beautiful, eerie, hilarious. Everything I'd want in a single movie, and everything I like about the holiday.
Here's to Mr. Whale and company, and everything that makes this one of my favorite films.
I hear there's a re-make in the works which sounds far more like an updated version of the 1980's Jennifer Beals film The Bride than this film. And I prefer the staggered approach of the two films rather than just jumping right into the story of The Bride's creation. Saying "people know the story of Frankenstein already" is bunk. There's always a new generation of people who do not, or for whom the version they saw or know is different.
I am on the fence about turning it into a The Bride-like remake. The pygmalion fantasy of the original film takes up most of the running time. Everyone's got their own hopes and dreams for this woman they're making. Pretorius will finally get recognition and maybe a good laugh as he sees what a life-sized creation will do. Henry can continue his experiments (his secret desire), and maybe get it right this time. The Monster will have a friend, someone who will love him for him.
The punchline is that the woman isn't here to play their games. In her extremely brief time on the planet, she manages to shatter all three illusions and the world literally comes crumbling all but Henry and Elizabeth as The Monster wishes him to live the life he can't.
While The Bride delves into the more My Fair Lady aspects of building yourself a woman, and remaking something in it's image would be a timely, thought provoking exercise - I reserve judgment about whether it's a good idea to drag out the inevitable rebellion of Angelina Jolie of whomever. at least until I see the final product.
Frankly, I hope Universal is wise enough to retain the iconic look of The Bride for at least a few sequences and understands what makes this movie work.