Frankenstein movie matched with super-adventurous dishes

Starring Colin Clive, Mae Clarke & Boris Karloff

Rating 8/10

Plot:

– It begins in a graveyard where a kinda mad scientist, ‘Henry’ Frankenstein (Clive) hides with his trusty sidekick Fritz (Dwight Frye), waiting for a body to be buried. They swiftly dig it up and start collecting bodies from random posts and such, as well as a criminal’s brain taken from a medical school.
– While Frankenstein is super-focussed on creating life, he ignores the one he has at home, his fiance, Elizabeth (Clarke) who shares her worries about Franky with her friend, Victor (John Boles). They take Dr Waldman (Edward Van Sloan) to visit Frankenstein just as he’s about to bring his monster to life.
– The three visitors watch as lightning strikes the body and its hands start to twitch (cue scary music and freaky close-ups on shocked dark eyes).
– Time goes by and the monster slowly comes to life, walking around Frankenstein’s windmill as if he owned the place. At first he seems innocent enough but stupid Fritz waves a fire torch in his face and the monster starts to go wild.
– They lock him in the cellar where he eventually kills Fritz (who can blame him) and tries to attack Frankenstein. The doctor and Franky decide to kill him and put him to sleep but then he wakes up and kills Dr Waldman.
– Meanwhile, Frankenstein returns home with Elizabeth, unaware that the good doctor has kicked the bucket. They prepare for their wedding while the monster escapes his windmill prison.
– He takes a walk in the country, unintentionally drowning a little girl (be still my heart) and heading towards Frankenstein’s wedding in the town.
– He breaks into Franky’s house, scary Elizabeth almost to death, but then flees. The little girl’s dad walks the streets with his dead daughter in his arms and the town rallies, determined to kill the monster.
– Frankenstein and the mayor lead the hunt, resulting in Franky getting a tad injured and the monster, well, I won’t ruin the ending for you!!

Entree:

Now if you can handle eating while watching this eerie film, then yay, you go for it. I was chowing down on some homemade Eggs Benedict which felt a tad wrong cos the egg was oozing runny egginess just like the blood flowing from Frankenstein’s murderous rampage (*shiver*). Ok, to start our Franken-worthy meal we’re having two things for the first course:

Bloody Brain Shooter Recipe from HGTV. Ewww could you stomach it? I’m not sure but it looks just like the brain Fritz stole  so it kinda works.

Image: HGTV

Image: HGTV

And numero duo is something for the tum tum … Garlic Eyeballs with Creamy Chive Dip recipe from BBC Good Food.

Review:

Now I remember why I love, love, love old movies. It’s always so exciting because you just don’t know what to expect, unlike films these days. This movie is gothic to the core, starting in the amazing graveyard where the Grim Reaper stands guard over the desecrated grave. Skulls, skeletons and death are everywhere, accentuated by tall, freaky shadows and gothic architecture. It’s shot in black and white which only adds to the creepy atmosphere.

The acting is pretty funny sometimes, especially with Boris Karloff as the monster. This role made him famous but at times, it’s just hilarious. Yep a tad overacted but that’s what they did in those days, very melodramatic. My favourite character was Frankenstein’s dad, Baron Frankenstein played by Frederick Kerr. He reminded me of my hubby’s grandfather, mixing humour with a bit of old man doddery and a no-nonsense attitude. Very well acted, Kerr-sie!

This is a pretty short movie, it doesn’t drag on with endless tension or pointless action sequences. It is a story well-told in an efficient, detailed sort of way. I must admit, there were scenes that made me shiver, although it’s not gory like modern horror films, thank goodness.

I loved the overall direction and production of this movie. For example we first meet the monster when we hear his giant footsteps coming down the gothic stairs then the door creaks open and he comes through the door BACKWARDS, delaying the presentation (da-dah! moment) of his face just a little bit longer! Magical. The most heartbreaking moment was when he was playing with little Maria. For a split second I thought, ah, here’s his humanity, his good side but then Noooooo! it wasn’t to be! Sad!

This is a great film, worthy of a place in my list of Top 100 Movies. Check it out for yourself. I found it online, so get Googling!

Main meal:

Ok, now if you’re an adventurous eater, you’ll love this next dish, if you’re not, then just enjoy the picture. In the spirit of the monster’s criminal brain, we’re cooking Goat Brain Fritters (eeek!) from Adventure Food.

Frankenstein trivia:

  • Budget – $262,007
  • Sadly, the star of this movie, Colin Clive died three years later from Tuberculousis and Frederick Kerr died the year after it was released.
  • This film suffered quite a bit of censorship in some states of America. The second part of the Maria scene was cut and the line, “Now I know what it feels like to be God” was sadly censored because that’s kinda the message behind the film isn’t it? Someone attempting to play God? Anyhoo, it’s back in now.
  • Two sequels followed this successful film: Bride of Frankenstein (1935) and Son of Frankenstein (1939).
  • At first, the producers were worried that Marilyn Harris, who played Maria, would be scared of the monster but she actually loved him and you can see it in her performance.
  • Karloff wasn’t invited to the premiere because he wasn’t seemingly ‘important’ enough.
  • A poster of this film reportedly sold for $6,000,000 making it the most valuable poster in the world.
  • Marilyn Harris, tired and wet from many takes of her drowning scene was offered anything for one more take. She requested 12 hard-boiled eggs. How things have changed.
  • The ending of the film was changed after Clive had died, so the actor you can see in the bed at the end is actually someone else.

Dessert:

Sweeet! There are so many great gothicy dessert recipes but I just couldn’t go past these super-cute Spooky Monster Brownie Pops from Betty Crocker.

What are your top 5 films?

More amazing film and food matches to try:

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