House of Frankenstein

Overview

In many ways the most endearing of Universal's B-grade "monster rallies" of the 1940s, House of Frankenstein manages within its 70-minute time span to make room for Frankenstein's monster Glenn Strange, Dracula John Carradine the Wolf Man Lon Chaney Jr., and a couple of new recruits, mad scientist Boris Karloff and demented hunchback J. Carroll Naish. Escaping from prison, Karloff vows to continue his diabolical efforts to emulate Dr. Frankenstein's "eternal life" experiments; he also swears vengeance on the ...
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Overview

In many ways the most endearing of Universal's B-grade "monster rallies" of the 1940s, House of Frankenstein manages within its 70-minute time span to make room for Frankenstein's monster Glenn Strange, Dracula John Carradine the Wolf Man Lon Chaney Jr., and a couple of new recruits, mad scientist Boris Karloff and demented hunchback J. Carroll Naish. Escaping from prison, Karloff vows to continue his diabolical efforts to emulate Dr. Frankenstein's "eternal life" experiments; he also swears vengeance on the three men Sig Ruman, Frank Reicher and Michael Mark who were responsible for sending him to prison. With the help of fellow escapee Naish, Karloff murders a travelling-carnival impresario George Zucco and assumes his identity. He travels first to the village where Ruman is burgomaster. Since his carnival is a "chamber of horrors," Karloff utilizes one of those horrors--Count Dracula--to settle his account with Ruman. Dracula does so, but dies when the first rays of sunlight stream across his body. En route to the next village, Naish gives shelter to runaway gypsy girl Elena Verdugo, who joins the caravan though she remains incredibly naive concerning Karloff's intentions! Coming to the village when the Frankenstein monster and the Wolfman were presumably drowned at the end of Frankenstein Meets the Wolfman 1944, Karloff revives the latter, who when he's not baying at the moon is the comparatively good-looking Lawrence Talbot. Karloff secures Talbot's cooperation by promising to perform some brain surgery that will relieve him of his lycanthropy. Later on, Karloff kidnaps and kills his other enemies Mark and Reicher, intending to use their brains to cure Talbot and to reactivate the Frankenstein monster. Jealous of Verdugo's attentions towards Talbot, Naish rebels against Karloff, and is killed for his troubles. Talbot turns into the Wolfman, whereupon Verdugo kills him before expiring herself. And Karloff, rendered immobile by the requisite attack of angry villagers, is dragged by the lumbering Monster into a pit of quicksand. Thus House of Frankenstein has something in common with Hamlet: No one is left alive at fade-out time. It's to scenarist Robert Siodmak's credit that he was able to fashion a coherent screenplay out of the crazy-quilt of copyrighted horror characters handed to him by Universal Pictures.
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Richard Gilliam
House of Frankenstein is more of a Boris Karloff revenge film than the monster-fest that Universal Studios advertised; Dracula (John Carradine) is eliminated early in the picture, so there's no interplay between his character and Frankenstein and the Wolf Man, the two other top-billed creatures. Fortunately, Karloff can carry the film on his own. Though nowhere near as stylish as Bride of Frankenstein (1935) or The Wolf Man (1941), House has plenty of atmosphere courtesy of George Robinson's carefully composed cinematography. Director Erle C. Kenton has the good sense to stick with a proven formula: this was the sixth film in Universal's Frankenstein series, and the third each for Dracula and The Wolf Man. Essentially, the first portion of House is a Dracula film, and the remainder a sequel to Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man, made earlier that year. All three monsters would return for House of Dracula (1945), where they would appear in the same portions of the story.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 9/16/1997
  • UPC: 096898082839
  • Original Release: 1944
  • Rating:

  • Source: Universal Studios
  • Format: VHS

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Boris Karloff Dr. Gustav Niemann
J. Carrol Naish Daniel
Lon Chaney Jr. Lawrence Stewart Talbot
John Carradine Count Dracula
Lionel Atwill Inspector Arnz
Anne Gwynne Rita Hussman
Peter Coe Carl Hussman
George Zucco Prof. Bruno Lampini
Elena Verdugo Ilonka
Sig Rumann Burgomaster Hussman
William Edmunds Fejos
Charles Miller Toberman
Philip Van Zandt Inspector Muller
Julius Tannen Hertz
Hans Herbert Meier
Dick Dickinson Born
George Lynn Gerlach
Michael Mark Frederick Strauss
Olaf Hytten Hoffman
Frank Reicher Ullman
Brandon Hurst Dr. Geissler
Glenn Strange The Monster
Technical Credits
Erle C. Kenton Director
Phil Cahn Editor
John P. Fulton Special Effects
Russell A. Gausman Set Decoration/Design
John B. Goodman Art Director
Edward T. Lowe Screenwriter
Paul Malvern Producer
Martin Obzina Art Director
Jack P. Pierce Makeup
George Robinson Cinematographer
Hans Salter Score Composer, Musical Direction/Supervision
Curt Siodmak Screenwriter
Vera West Costumes/Costume Designer
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 10, 2003

    What's your problem??!

    I totally think this movie is a lot of good fun. Glenn Strangle totally STEALS the climax of this excellent sequel. What IS your problem 2 star reviewer? (Don't listen to him classic horror fans!!) The first part is with Dracula. He obeys Niemann but gets killed later. The two escapees including Karloff and Naish find ruins of Frankenstein's castle. They find the monster and try to cure the Wolf Man. As told above, the Frankenstein monster steals the impressive climax....

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 24, 2003

    This is NOT a good moive.

    This is a dumb moive!The Guy who Plays Dracula does a terrible job as Dracula.Glen Strange does a bad job as the Frankenstein Monster, and the Monster is only in the very very end.Lon Chaney jr does a great job as the Wolfman, Lon plays Wolfman in like every old Wolfman moive there is.Boris Karloff plays a mad Docter who escape from prison. I do not reccomend this Moive!

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews