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Classic Monsters: the Definitive Collection
     

Classic Monsters: the Definitive Collection

Director: George Waggner, James Whale, Tod Browning, Bela Lugosi

Cast: George Waggner, James Whale, Tod Browning, Bela Lugosi

 
No Hollywood studio made more memorable horror films in the 1930s and '40s than Universal Pictures, and this box set collects three of the studio's best and most influential creature features. This set includes the original 1931 version of Frankenstein starring Boris Karloff as the monster; the restored edition of 1931's Dracula, featuring Bela Lugosi in

Overview

No Hollywood studio made more memorable horror films in the 1930s and '40s than Universal Pictures, and this box set collects three of the studio's best and most influential creature features. This set includes the original 1931 version of Frankenstein starring Boris Karloff as the monster; the restored edition of 1931's Dracula, featuring Bela Lugosi in his most famous role and a new score from Phillip Glass; and 1941's The Wolf Man, with Lon Chaney Jr. as the unfortunate lyncanthrope.

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Gregory Baird
Universal Studios' reign as Hollywood's unofficial house of horror in the 1930s and '40s brought about a seminal triumvirate of monsters -- Dracula, Frankenstein, and The Wolf Man -- all three films nicely packaged in Classic Monsters: The Definitive Collection. The set kicks off with director Tod Browning's 1931 classic Dracula, starring the notoriously eccentric Bela Lugosi as Bram Stoker's famous vampire. The story follows the Count from his Transylvanian home to London, where he bites necks and does battle with vampire hunter Van Helsing (Edward Van Sloan). Lugosi's thick accent and piercing gaze make his performance the stuff of legend -- so much so that he was virtually typecast from his momentous entrance. Also noteworthy is Karl Freund's evocative cinematography, depicting Dracula's outrageously dilapidated castle amidst beautifully gothic scenes of the Transylvanian countryside by night. The film's lack of a musical score makes for powerful silences, although in the 1990s Phillip Glass composed an original score, recorded by the Kronos Quartet, which is included as an option on the DVD. Universal immediately capitalized on Dracula's monstrous success with the 1931 adaptation of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, starring Boris Karloff as the motley assemblage of body parts brought to life by the mad Doctor Frankenstein (Colin Clive). Directed by James Whale, Frankenstein is a true triumph: The sets are moody and expressionistic (including the veritable apotheosis of a mad scientist's laboratory), and the decisive camera work is utterly powerful. The film made Karloff a star, and indeed his sleepy-eyed and lumbering portrayal of the monster is perfect. He seems not so much evil as pathetic, abandoned by his maniacal creator and left alone in a world he can neither understand nor cope with. And of course, there are plenty of angry villagers with torches to make for a conflagrant climax. Rounding out Universal's collection is 1941's The Wolf Man, starring Lon Chaney, Jr. as a wealthy heir who develops the unfortunate tendency of becoming a werewolf and terrorizing the locals. In full wolf makeup, Chaney is little more than your typical hairy, snarling menace, but when he's just a man, he is a deeply sympathetic screen presence, an innocent lug with a tragic affliction. There have been more than a few screen monsters since Universal's Big Three, but audiences cannot forget the strange and sometimes campy charms of these horror icons -- or maybe they're just too afraid to forget.

Product Details

Release Date:
08/28/2001
UPC:
0025192146725
Rating:
NR
Source:
Universal Studios
Region Code:
1
Presentation:
[B&W, Full Frame]
Sound:
[Dolby Digital, monaural]
Time:
6:35:00

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Bela Lugosi Count Dracula,Bela
Colin Clive Henry Frankenstein
Lon Chaney Wolfman/Larry Talbot
Boris Karloff The Monster
Claude Rains Sir John Talbot
Helen Chandler Mina Seward
David Manners John Harker
Mae Clarke Elizabeth
Warren William Dr. Lloyd
Dwight Frye Renfield,Fritz, the Dwarf
Evelyn Ankers Gwen Conliffe
John Boles Victor Moritz
Edward Van Sloan Dr. Van Helsing,Doctor Waldman
Ralph Bellamy Capt. Paul Montford
Patric Knowles Frank Andrews
Maria Ouspenskaya Maleva

Technical Credits
George Waggner Director
James Whale Director
Tod Browning Director

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Classic Monsters: The Definitive Collection
1. Main Titles [1:11]
2. A Night of Evil [4:03]
3. The Castle [3:55]
4. "I Am...Dracula" [2:48]
5. Renfield's Room [6:08]
6. Bound For England [3:17]
7. The Visitor [6:03]
8. Death Comes at Night [2:24]
9. Nosferatu [2:55]
10. Renfield's Warning [3:39]
11. The Next Victim [3:58]
12. Dracula Revealed [5:07]
13. Lure of the Vampire [3:47]
14. Necessary Precautions [8:57]
15. A Battle of Wills [2:26]
16. The Vampire's Curse [5:39]
17. Dracula Strikes Again [3:57]
18. Evil's End [3:57]
Disc #2 -- Classic Monsters: The Definitive Collection
1. A Word of Friendly Warning [2:04]
2. The Grave Robbers [4:37]
3. The Abnormal Brain [7:27]
4. The Preparations [4:19]
5. Frankenstein's Plan [4:30]
6. The Creation [7:42]
7. The Creature [3:33]
8. His Tormentor [:58]
9. First Blood [6:37]
10. The Creature Escapes [5:49]
11. Maria and the Monster [5:47]
12. The Uninvited Guest [4:34]
13. To Find a Monster [5:33]
14. The Windmill [2:06]
15. Death to the Monster! [2:00]
16. A Toast to the Frankensteins [2:15]
Disc #3 -- Classic Monsters: The Definitive Collection
1. Main Titles [1:33]
2. Lycanthropy [:47]
3. Talbot Castle [2:36]
4. The Observatory [3:51]
5. A Walking Stick [3:34]
6. A Fortune Teller [7:09]
7. An Investigation [5:44]
8. A Gypsy Burial [3:36]
9. Gwen's Accusers [2:51]
10. Frank Andrews [3:44]
11. The Gypsy Woman [4:17]
12. A Werewolf in Camp [8:52]
13. Time For Church [5:47]
14. Wolf Trap [3:42]
15. A Visit at Night [4:16]
16. All Tied Up [3:14]
17. The Hunt is On [3:45]
18. End Credits [:29]

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