Monday, June 1, 2009

Ghost of Frankenstein (1942)

4th in the Frankenstein series.

Lon Chaney, Jr. takes over the role of the monster in this film.  Ygor and the monster have survived the events in "Son of Frankenstein".  They travel to Vasaria to seek the help of the second son of Frankenstein.  Dr. Frankenstein decides to help the monster by giving him a new and healthy brain.  Ygor wants his own brain to go inside the monster's body.  Dr. Frankenstein would never do this, so Ygor has Frankenstein's assistant do the surgery himself!

"Ghost of Frankenstein" is a fun movie, even though it gets pretty ridiculous by the end.  Lon Chaney is ok as the monster.  He doesn't show much emotion at all however.  He is no Karloff.

Bela Lugosi is once again excellent as Ygor.  While his performance isn't as prominent as it was in "Son", it is still good to see him.

The relationship the monster has with the little girl in the film is well done.  The monster likes her and he wants to have her brain.  It's a bit bizarre, but it works.  The best scene is when the monster carries the little girl to the rooftops of the village to get her ball.  It really shows the start of a friendship between the monster and little girl.

Jack Pierce's makeup in this film is good, but not quite as good as it was in "Son".  It seems as though he didn't have the time or the money to have the makeup be as effective.  This is especially evident with Ygor.  The wig and beard look phony compared to "Son" and his rotten teeth are gone.  I'm not really sure why they made those changes.

Overall, "Ghost of Frankenstein" is a good addition to the series.  I really enjoy how the relationship of the monster and Ygor comes full circle.

B+  I recommend it.

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