This is a comical take on the classic story of Frankenstein’s monster. Here it is perpetuated though his Grandson and told to us by comic legend Mel Brooks, in what I consider to be his finest work.
This 1974 masterpiece of ‘horror spoofed comedy’ predates Scary Movie by more than 25 years, and is easily a funnier film. The more subtle jokes were mixed nicely with the slapstick aspects of the movie creating a pleasing flow. It was sharply written and perfectly executed, and the all-star ensemble is brilliantly cast.
Especially Teri Garr
So for those not in the know, this movie is the story of Dr. Frankenstein’s grandson (Gene Wilder), who travels from America to Transylvania upon learning he has been named heir to Castle Frankenstein and all of his famous Grandfather’s possessions. Upon his arrival, he is greeted ‘Igor’ (Marty Feldman), ‘Inga’ (Garr), and the ominous ‘Frau Blücher’ (Cloris Leachman).
The young Doctor is skeptical of his Grandfather’s legend, viewing the old man’s work as myth and embarrassment. As the movie progresses however, the young Doctor discovers the secret lab of his grandfather and determines that the theories could prove true. It’s not long after this that Igor and the Doctor are robbing graves for body parts and creating a new monster played to perfection by Peter Boyle.
Igor however does not retrieve the correct brain, instead delivering an abnormal brain. Before long the monster is not only alive, but on display and still adverse to fire. As at any old timey show, the audience is apparently handed vegetables at the door for which to hurl at the stage and infuriate the monster and he exits into the night.
This leads to the villagers once again curse the name ‘Frankenstein’ and head toward the castle with torches and such. In the end however we find an amicable result for all parties involved…
Aside from the aforementioned actors, the film also featured Brooks’ regulars Madeline Kahn (above) and Kenneth Mars, as well as Oscar Winner Gene Hackman who plays the old blind man who attempts to befriend the monster.
Overall this might be my favorite of all the movies on the our countdown. Simply classic.
5/5 Great Pumpkins.