Bride of Frankenstein

Critics Consensus

An eccentric, campy, technically impressive, and frightening picture, James Whale's Bride of Frankenstein has aged remarkably well.

98%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 47

87%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 24,850

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Movie Info

After recovering from injuries sustained in the mob attack upon himself and his creation, Dr. Frankenstein (Colin Clive) falls under the control of his former mentor, Dr. Pretorius (Ernest Thesiger), who insists the now-chastened doctor resume his experiments in creating new life. Meanwhile, the Monster (Boris Karloff) remains on the run from those who wish to destroy him without understanding that his intentions are generally good despite his lack of socialization and self-control.

Cast & Crew

Boris Karloff
The Monster (as Karloff)
Elsa Lanchester
Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, The Monster's Mate
Colin Clive
Dr. Henry Frankenstein
Valerie Hobson
Elizabeth Frankenstein
Ernest Thesiger
Dr. Pretorius
Gavin Gordon
Lord Byron
Douglas Walton
Percy Shelley
E.E. Clive
Burgermeister
Mary Shelley
Writer
Franz Schubert
Original Music
Franz Waxman
Original Music
John J. Mescall
Cinematographer
Ted J. Kent
Film Editor
Charles D. Hall
Art Direction
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Critic Reviews for The Bride of Frankenstein

All Critics (47) | Top Critics (8) | Fresh (46) | Rotten (1)

Audience Reviews for The Bride of Frankenstein

  • Nov 02, 2018
    Considering I found the original Frankenstein film fairly mediocre, and I really couldn't stand the book, I was surprised how much I enjoyed Bride of Frankenstein. It's a natural progression while still hitting a lot of the same highlights of the first, but its emotional strengths work so much better. The lead of the film is very much the creature, and you really feel for him. His primary drive in the film is just to find a friend, and every time he loses his chance to get a friend you genuinely feel bad for him. The ending is a genuine downer, but it really works and nails in the message. The imagery is great, the black and white visuals looking positively gorgeous, and the whole thing moves at a brisk pace never losing my attention. One of the best in the Universal Monster catalogue.
    Michael M Super Reviewer
  • Oct 26, 2014
    As far as sequels go, "The Bride of Frankenstein" is great, however, I felt like I wanted more of the bride than what was delivered. Instead of having the entire film build to that one climatic moment, it should have happened earlier on and then have added more suspense to whether or not it would work out. I felt a bit let down with this sequel. Boris Karloff actually improves on his acting from the first and makes you feel for him in every moment throughout this film, and I will say that is the one aspect that was done better, emotion. The character of Frankenstein's Monster has much more to do here, but nobody else seems to be as motivated as he does for finding his mate. Overall, it is a great classic film that is definitely rewatchable, but the original is the true marvel. "The Bride of Frankenstein" is great!
    KJ P Super Reviewer
  • Sep 22, 2014
    Building on the excellence of the first film with more wit, vision, and pathos, the Sequel of Frankenstein continues the Grand Guinol tradition of its classic forebear while upping the creative ante, gifting filmgoers with the greatest monster movie of all time. Still working from Mary Shelly's novel (the film even brilliantly provides an introduction with Shelly, her lover, and Lord Byron discussing the story's development), the creature gets imbued with the power of speech while visiting a blind hermit while trying - but failing to the screams of many - to be accepted. It's possibly the most human of monster movies, soliciting sympathy for a patchwork man who didn't ask to get made. Searching for companionship, he demands a mate and visionary director James Whale demands full creative control. Atmospheric to an unforgettable degree, the film proves even more Expressionistic than the last chapter without qualifying as Expressionism. Technically, even beyond lighting and sets, Bride of Frankenstein's set design and scope is an absolute technical marvel. In this unrated horror classic, Dr. Frankenstein (Colin Clive) becomes forced to tempt fate once again when the monster (Boris Karloff) and an equally mad scientist (Ernst Thesiger) demand a suitable mate (Elsa Lanchester) for his creation. Of course, it helps to have such epically great players. In an age when cast and crew return for a second or tenth go-round without question, Bride's revolutionary status seems less than groundbreaking. But Colin Clive and Boris Karloff develop their already fascinating characters further under Whale's specific direction to great effect. Most importantly, this macabre masterpiece winningly employs a great degree of humor, dipping its toes into camp without becoming campy. Bottom line: Monster High
    Jeff B Super Reviewer
  • Jan 24, 2014
    Whale returns to his Frankenstein with this amusing sequel that has an even campier, deliciously wrier humor and offers more depth to Karloff's Monster, while everything is also more complete here (despite gaps in logic), including a score that was missing in the original movie.
    Carlos M Super Reviewer

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