Box art for Bride of Frankenstein

Bride of Frankenstein


Legendary Boris Karloff reprises his role as the screen's most misunderstood monster and Elsa Lanchester stars as his ill-fated bride in one of the most popular horror classics of all time.

Rotten Tomatoes® scores

  • Critic Score
  • Audience Score

common sense

ON for kids age 9
0 out of 5
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
1 out of 5
0 out of 5
Positive messages
0 out of 5
Positive role models
0 out of 5
0 out of 5
0 out of 5

A riveting, funny, and suspenseful horror classic.

what parents need to know

Parents need to know that this film has some frightening moments; just the concept of men playing God may frighten some children. A persecuted monster inspires pity. The very young may find the monsters, crypts, and a laboratory crackling with electricity unnerving. Grave robbing, murder, tinkering with nature are the film's main themes. This film might scare grade-school kids out of their jammies, but that's why they'll want to watch it. But it's best for older kids and preteens, who will probably get fewer scares and more laughs out of it than younger kids will. Still, parents may want to remain close by. There's enough suspense, pathos, and intentional humor here to make this great fun for everybody. Seeing Frankenstein and Pretorius at work in the laboratory might spur children to invent something of their own.

what families can talk about

  • Families can talk about the idea of "playing God." Where is this happening in real life?
  • What do you think of cloning and other forms of manipulation? What are the ethics of it?
  • What do you think about the way the Monster is treated? How does it make you feel?

movie reviews from Rotten Tomatoes®

Top Critic Reviews

Fresh: The Bride of Frankenstein has an in-your- face audacity that hasn't dimmed all that much after 63 years.

- Bob Graham, San Francisco Chronicle, Saturday, January 1, 2000

Fresh: Whale added an element of playful sexuality to this version, casting the proceedings in a bizarre visual framework that makes this film a good deal more surreal than the original.

- Don Druker, Chicago Reader, Monday, June 4, 2007

Fresh: Another astonishing chapter in the career of the Monster.

- Frank S. Nugent, New York Times, Tuesday, August 8, 2006

Audience Reviews

4 stars

Whale returns to his Frankenstein with this amusing sequel that has an even campier, deliciously wrier humor and also offers a lot more depth to Karloff's Monster - and it all seems more complete here (despite its gaps in logic), including a score that was absent from the original movie.

- blacksheepboy, Saturday, January 25, 2014

3 stars

This one lacked the freshness of its predecessor, but it is in all other ways competant. Everyone who made the original great are back, but I think this one suffers a little in its attempt to up the ante. Otherwise this one is really beautiful and entertaining.

- MidnightMadwoman, Saturday, September 15, 2007

4 stars

"To a new world of gods and monsters!" Successful sequel to the classic 1931 film Frankenstein is just as good as the original, if not even better. Taking place just after the events of Frankenstein, this film again follows The Monster (Karloff) who survived the blaze in a burning windmill that supposedly killed him. He rises from the rubble to run rampage once more. A shadowy scientist named Dr. Pretorius (Thesiger) is determined to make a mate for the monster, and teach him how to speak. Pretorius blackmails Dr. Henry Frankenstein (Clive), forcing him back into the laboratory to revive another corpse - this time a woman - that will become The Monster's partner. This remarkable sequel has been regarded as better than the original, and I tend to agree. Bride of Frankenstein reunites most of the original cast, including Karloff and Clive among others. Director James Whale also returns to the director's chair to craft this quality classic horror movie. Karloff's portrayal is perfect. He makes a tragic monster who is made a lot closer to the source material. Instead of killing everything in his path he acknowledges the kindness of others who wish to help, and his halting words of dialogue are haunting. Colin Clive returns to the role that he made back in 1931, and still retains the character's intrigue as well as his determination. Special effects and make-up look amazing considering that it's a film made over 70 years ago. Overall, Bride of Frankenstein is classic horror balanced out with comic relief. It has dated badly, but the brilliance still shines through and makes for a very historic 75 minutes of viewing.

- PvtCaboose91, Tuesday, April 22, 2008