Mad Love (1935)
Director: Karl Freund
Main Stars: Peter Lorre, Frances Drake, Colin Clive
Storyline: An insane surgeon is in love with an actress in which he replaced her wounded pianist’s hands with that of a murder.
Review (Spoils): Dr. Gogol (Peter Lorre) while watching a performance falls in love with the beautiful Yvonne Orlac (Frances Drake). When he finds out after obsessing about her that she is married to a pianist, his mind cracks even further. The pianist Stephen (Colin Clive) gets hurt during a train accident which crushes his hands which Yvonne then goes to Dr. Gogol for help. Dr. Gogol agrees but uses his sick mind to win her over by replacing her husband’s hands with that of a knife throwing murder. The hands have a mind of their own and this leads to some serious conflict.
Peter Lorre yet again plays the mad character to a tee. He is carries the performance of his obsession amazingly and the end when he finally snaps is classic.
Rating: This film should sit up there as a classic b/w horror, maybe not as high as Dracula or Frankenstein but it should still be recognized for a classic. Love the idea of Colin Clive who is best known for being a mad doctor (Frankenstein) is now the victim from a new mad doctor. Check this one out if you have not as Dr. Gogol is a brilliant villain.
The Bride of Frankenstein (1935)
Director: James Whale
Main Stars: Boris Karloff, Elsa Lanchester, Colin Clive, Valerie Hobson, Ernest Thesiger, Dwight Frye
Storyline: The Monster of Frankenstein story continues right after the burning of the mill. The Monster lived and he is on the hunt for friendship so that he can understand this world. A mad scientist named Doctor Pretorius talks Dr. Frankenstein into creating a new monster to continue the dream of the man made race.
Review (Spoils): The movie starts out with Mary Shelley (Elsa Lanchester) describing her book that she is writing and how the story does not end with the burning of the mill the night the Monster (Boris Karloff )supposedly died. This is a nice added touch to the film and it is a nice change to what was done in the first film. Actually this film does a lot different than the original film bringing some more humanity to the Monster such as the longing for friendship and love. The film touches this with the Monster coming upon the blind man and filling in companionship with drink, smoke, eating and even the lessons of speech. This added a nice touch to the film even though I’m a not a huge fan of the talking Monster. The film is also graced with two madmen this round who are the true monsters of the film. We have the classic Dr. Frankenstein (Colin Clive) again andnow an even more macabre madman named Doctor Pretorius (Ernest Thesiger) it was excellent acting on both parts. This film was a perfect sequel to the classic film.
The only parts that I felt did not mend well with the film were the experiments of Dr. Pretorius with the little people which just make it more silly than interesting. Another part that was too bad was the lack of the presence of the bride herself (Elsa Lanchester) who did an outstanding job with the twitchy movements and her gorgeous eyes that help her become more sinister and shocking. More screen time of the bride would have been great as she was great in this film.
Rating: This is a must see for horror fans and it is an awesome piece to add to the Frankenstein series. Elsa Lanchester does a breath taking job playing the bride it is just unfortunate on the lack of the character in the movie.