James Whale – Bride of Frankenstein (1935)

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Sequel to 1931’s Frankenstein, Bride of Frankenstein was directed by James Whale and stars Boris Karloff as The Monster, Elsa Lanchester in the dual role of his mate and Mary Shelley, Colin Clive as Henry Frankenstein and Ernest Thesiger as Doctor Septimus Pretorius.

The film follows on immediately from the events of the earlier film, and is rooted in a subplot of the original Mary Shelley novel, Frankenstein (1818). In the film, a chastened Henry Frankenstein abandons his plans to create life, only to be tempted and finally coerced by the Monster, encouraged by Henry’s old mentor Dr. Pretorius, into constructing a mate for him. Continue reading

James Whale – One More River (1934)

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IMDB reviewer: Highly superior soap
…a Galsworthy novel, adapted by playwright R.C. Sheriff (author of the great
antiwar play “Journey’s End”), directed with great assurance by James Whale, and
with a near-amazing cast. As an abused high society wife trying to wrench free of her
extremely nasty husband, Diana Wynyard is ladylike and touching. A very young
Jane Wyatt is her confidante, Henry Stephenson is a helpful lawyer relative, and
Frank Lawton is the appealing young man who falls in love with her. All are upstaged
by Mrs. Patrick Campbell, a formidable presence bellowing every line with relish.
It’s remarkably adult for its day, with a modern attitude about adultery (our heroine
doesn’t, but the movie seems to believe she should). It’s literate and
fast-moving, and sandwiched between Whale’s “The Invisible Man” and “The Bride of
Frankenstein,” it’s one of several examples of how assured he was outside of the
horror genre.< Continue reading

James Whale – Frankenstein (1931)

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A Man-Made Monster in Grand Guignol Film Story
Out of John L. Balderston’s stage conception of the Mary Shelley classic, “Frankenstein,” James Whale, producer of “Journey’s End” as a play and as a film, has wrought a stirring grand-guignol type of picture, one that aroused so much excitement at the Mayfair yesterday that many in the audience laughed to cover their true feelings. Continue reading