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The Ghost of Frankenstein
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The Ghost of Frankenstein (1942)

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Plot Summary:
"Ygor resurrects Frankenstein's monster and brings him to the original doctor's son, Ludwig, for help. Ludwig, obsessed with the idea of restoring the monster to full power, is unaware that his various associates all have different ideas about whose brain is to be transplanted into the monster's skull."


Review by
Ryan McDonald
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Review Date: 15 December 2003 My Rating: out of 5

 

Descendant of mad scientist (a rather limp-wristed Sir Cedric Hardwicke) attempts to correct his family's mistakes by fixing the brain of the Monster (Lon Chaney Jr., disappointing as an unsympathetic monster, a sign of what was to come). The untrustworthy, broken-necked Ygor (Bela Lugosi, in his best role, but not as good in it as he was in 'Son of Frankenstein') attempts to stop him (Despite the fact that he should've died in the previous film...never mind). Lionel Atwill is also back, but in a different, less interesting role.

A dull, talky Erle Kenton film for Universal, the cinematography is superlative but that's about it. Hardwicke is even more of a fop than Ernst Thesiger was in 'Bride of Frankenstein' and nowhere near as much fun. Charles Previn score is pretty awful, and despite not even clocking in at 90 minutes, it seems nearly twice as long.

Only slightly ahead of 'House of Frankenstein', it's a real disappointment. The main grievance is that the monster is no longer the pathetic yet not quite detestable creature Karloff so brilliantly played.

Chaney, in his debut as the character, just lurches about like the drunken wreck he apparently was on occasion in real life. Chaney was always good at projecting pathos, just look at his turns as 'The Wolf Man', but he's not at all like that here. There's really nothing going on inside the character's head, and thus much of the interest is lost.

OVERALL SUMMARY
For Lugosi fans only, this is one of the Universal horror films that you can probably pass up for something more worthy.




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