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House of Frankenstein

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Boris Karloff as Niemann. A convicted criminal and dabbler in science who escapes and stumbles upon the monster created by Franeknstein.

J. Carol Naish as Daniel a hunchback who escapes jail with Niemann and helps him with the hope he will have his deformity changed.

Lon Chaney Jr. as Larry Talbot/the wolfman.

John Carradine as Dracula.

Glenn Strange as Frankenstein’s monster.

So we are promised  Frankenstein’s monster, the wolfman, Dracula, the hunchback and a mad scientist. What we get:

Frankenstein’s monster is played for the first of three times by Glenn Strange. So by this point the character is more of a set piece and a monster with little else to do what stomp around and frighten people.

Dracula is played for the first of two times with Universal by John Carradine. As opposed to Lugosi’s old style European Count we get thin, mustached Carradine playing a bit prissy version of Dracula and only for the first half of the film as he gets beaten pretty easily.

The hunchback Daniel is a character who goes back and forth between pitiful and mean.

The mad scientist Niemann is perhaps more deranged and misguided than the first Doctor Frankenstein.

The wolfman is of course Chaney Jr. again and this time he whines a bit about not wanting to turn all fuzzy again.


As an added bonus their is a gypsy girl thrown who likes Talbot, but Daniel likes her too and of course she can’t like him because he is a hunchback.

The script seems tossed together just to squeeze all these monsters into it. At this point Universal had done so many of these monster films that I think they were going for making a buck over going for style points. Despite the thin plot and improbable set of circumstances that unit all these characters it still keeps your interest because of all of the monsters and the quick pace. The film also looks great with some very well done sets even though we could tell by this time that the budget was being cut to some extent. The cast is a plus with Karloff and Naish being the real standouts. This is one I pull out on occasion on a rainy night.


2 responses to “House of Frankenstein

  1. What a brilliant film lots of fun. Great review as well, perfect for a rainy night like you say

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