Day 21: Frankenstein Meets The Wolf Man (1943))
Cast: Bela Lugosi as The Monster
Lon Chaney Jr. as Lawrence Talbot
Ilona Massey as Baroness Elsa Frankenstein
Lionel Atwill as The Mayor
Maria Ouspenskaya as Maleva
Written by Curt Siodmak
Directed by Roy William Neill (Sherlock Holmes and the Secret Weapon)
Plot: Lawrence Talbot comes back to life after his tomb is robbed. It doesn’t take long for the Wolf Man to return as well along with some unexplained murders. Upon escaping an asylum, he reunites with Maleva, the old gypsy woman, and they go in search of the one man who might be able to help cure him…Dr. Frankenstein. However, they only find his daughter…well her and the Monster.
Personal Thoughts: This movie really is more of a sequel to The Wolf Man (1941) and, therefore, highlights Lon Chaney Jr. Poor Bela finally agrees to play The Monster and he is relegated to a secondary character that doesn’t even show up until the half-way point of the movie. I’ve never really thought Lugosi’s Monster looked as good as the others (Karloff, Chaney or Glenn Strange). It doesn’t help that he played The Monster as if he was blind, although it was inconsistent and eventually written out. He was also supposed to speak but that was written out too. However, you can still see his mouth move numerous times. It leaves his portrayal odd at best. And just how many full moons are there? Despite these flaws, I do love this movie. I vividly remember watching at midnight in a hotel room while on vacation with my Mom and Dad, somewhere around the age of 12 or so. Needless to say, I recommend it for a late night or matinee viewing.
- This movie is the fifth in the Universal sequel and serves as a sequel to both Ghost of Frankenstein (1942) and The Wolf Man (1941).
- Lugosi’s screen time is limited due to his dialogue scenes being cut from the film.
- Evelyn Ankers does not reprise the role of Elsa due to her starring role in The Wolf Man two years earlier.