Tonight on MeTV- we kick off our June schedule with a movie very appropriate for the month that has traditionally been associated with brides-featuring the most honored bride in monster matrimony- with the great Boris Karloff making his second appearance in his best-known role, picking up the story where the original "Frankenstein" film had left off! Stand by for the ONLY appearance of the one Universal monster who didn't kill anybody- and, in spite of her limited screen time, became a true icon of Universal horror- the “Bride of Frankenstein”!
This favorite 1935 film- based on the story the authoress claimed came to her in a dream ( the anniversary of which comes up just a little later this month!)-starts off on a dismal, stormy night- with that authoress- Mary Shelley-revealing that the Frankenstein tale did NOT end at the story's conclusion! She relates what happened next- starting at the point where the original “Frankenstein” film ended. We see the burning remains of the windmill, the scene of the final battle between monster and maker took place. Poor Henry,thrown from its heights by the Monster, is now being carried home by the crowd that witnessed it all, as they mourn his “demise” but, in the same breath, celebrate the "end" of the Monster. The father of little Maria (the unfortunate child from the original story that the Monster threw into the lake, unaware that she would drown) remains at the smoking ruins, longing to make certain the Monster is no more- but his luck- and his life- run out- because the Monster still lives!
Meanwhile, Henry is carried back to his young fiancee Elizabeth,and, though he was at first thought dead, he -just like the Monster he created- has survived! Henry is on the slow road to recovery when he gets a late night visit from the creepy Dr. Pretorius- a mentor of Henry’s, who somehow is well aware of what his recovering student has achieved, and now seeks his help with his own experiments in creating life. Bringing Henry to his laboratory, he displays some of the bizarre results of his work to Henry- in an effort convince him to partner with him, share his knowledge and expertise- and finally jointly create a true perfect living being! With everything he has endured, Henry wants no part of such an undertaking- he has realized through the awful results of his own experiment that playing God is a mistake.
His Monster, meanwhile, burned and hurting, has fled from the windmill, followed by pursuers like a wild animal. He seeks solace in the forest, eventually stumbling upon the hut of a blind hermit (the basis for the famous- and hilarious- scene in “Young Frankenstein”). The hermit is grateful to have this new "friend"- as is the Monster, who is taught some basics by the kindly blind man. This tranquil alliance is disrupted when two hunters (one of whom is John Carradine), having lost their way, come to the cabin for help with directions-and, in shock, recognize the Monster! The misunderstood creature escapes and, trying to hide from his pursuers, enters a crypt in a graveyard- where, coincidentally, the devious Pretorius just happens to be, enjoying a snack while in search of "parts” for his latest project! Completely unfazed by the appearance of the Monster, Pretorius realizes that he can use the lonely creature as leverage to get Henry to cooperate with him- by threatening his young bride's safety! Unwilling to let anything happen to Elizabeth, Frankenstein submits to his demands, and heads uneasily back to work with Pretorius- as they endeavor to create the Monster's fondest desire- a bride! But- will this fiancee of fright for the Monster be a match made in...well...a laboratory, but- perhaps not exactly provide the happy union some might wish for?
This classic film is not just one of the best horror films, but also included in lists of all-time great motion pictures- period. Karloff continues to add new facets to his portrayal of the Monster- including the addition of speech- and Dr. Pretorius, portrayed by the "flamboyant" Ernest Thesiger, is, without a doubt, a truly memorable addition to the Frankenstein film legend, as is the Bride, portrayed ever so briefly, but effectively, by Elsa Lanchester. You'll note that I may not be pronouncing her name correctly in one segment- we had various opinions on how it should be pronounced, and I may have chosen wrong in that case, and there was no time for a reshoot!. We’ll tell you all about the entire cast, certain deletions from the production, and more- as well as providing our usual contributions. Plus- watch for a quick cameo from one of our favorite MeTV actors!
The “Bride of Frankenstein" reception begins on MeTV tonight at 8pm eastern/pacific, 7 central, or check for time and channel in your area in your local listings or at www.metv.com . You can once again Tweet along with the scores of fans who live-Tweet during the show on Twitter, using the hashtag #svengoolie – which continues to land us among the top trending topics in the entire country! Our Chicago area viewers get a second look at the prehistoric pandemonium of “Dinosaurus!”-at 11 am on the U.
Join us tonight for rice and old shoes- as well as old body parts-recycled!