Frankenstein's monster is immortal not just in movies – he is a character that has become an integral part of popular culture and has been around for over 200 years. However, even the “Frankenstein” film of the 1930s had to face warnings for sensitive viewers, and some scenes had to be censored.
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In July 2023 I mentioned this in one of my textswhich Tom Hanks He has a problem with “updating” classic literary works. The purpose of this measure was to get rid of them Potentially offensive language.
“I think we're all adults. Let's trust our own sensitivity, not someone else's decisions.” What may or may not offend us” – Hanks said in an interview with BBC News.
What he meant then was business Ayana Fleminga I Agathe Christie.
Interestingly, in early 2024 “You're radio,” I mentioned. – Quoted from “The Independent” and “Guardian” – those classic films James Bond Will be provided… Warnings. Out of concern for the sensitivity of contemporary viewers.
“British Film Institutethat it British Film Institute I decided to include special warnings that would protect all viewers from accidentally reading substandard content of classic works. Modern standards“- we read on the website “Antyradio”.
He spoke about “outdated language and stereotypes” in ““goldfinger” And ““You only live twice” (“You only live twice”).
However, before any of the people reading this say “that damned political correctness, it was…” – I would like to remind you that such actions also happened much earlier – also in these mythical “back in the day”. .
A perfect example of this is… “Frankenstein” From 1931.
He was the director of the movie “Frankenstein.” James Willan incredibly talented filmmaker who, if you check IMDb, the world's largest online database of movies and TV series, has had nothing but… 24 titles. The last three of these are short productions.
Pisces abandoned Hollywood in the early 1940s. May 29, 1957 in Los Angeles You are free. A year ago, he suffered a serious stroke.
His death was initially considered an accident (drowning in a swimming pool), as his old partner had hidden his suicide note.
In it, Pisces asked, among other things, not to mourn him. He explained that his nerves are frayed and he lives in agony “The future is nothing but old age, sickness, and pain.”.
The era of monsters
The “peak period” of Weil's work occurred in the first half of the 1930s. It was then that he filmed the aforementioned film “Frankenstein” and its direct sequel “Bride of Frankenstein” (Which, to me, as a fan of classic horror films, is what Frankenstein is to… “Aliens – The Decisive Battle” Cameron was “Alien – The Nostromo's Eighth Passenger” Ridley Scott – better movie).
They also deserve special attention “Old Dark House” (1932), which is still terrifying despite the passage of time, and “Invisible Man” With special effects that certainly amazed many viewers of that era.
But let's get back to and from the previously mentioned “Frankenstein.” “Political correctness”.
First of all, it's worth noting that the 1931 film Whale was not the first adaptation of this story – it was actually produced in 1931. 1910 By Edison Studios and directed by James Searle Dawley.
I won't describe what the movie is about either. He is almost 100 years old. Mary Shelley's original book is 206 years old. If someone doesn't know the story of Frankenstein yet, it means they don't want to know it.
He lives! Now I know how…
I used the term “political correctness” intentionally, since the film The Whale, at the time of its premiere, was already partly subject to so-called Codexoy Hisa (It was officially introduced only in 1934, but on the Internet you can find information that it began operating partly in 1930).
The law was ultimately intended to clearly define what could be shown in films and how. “Frankenstein” is stuck in that brief period in American cinema history when filmmakers still had more freedom.
However, Whale itself begins with Viewer warnings Before what they are about to see on screen. Warning about the product itself.
How are you? Mr. Karl Laemmle (film producer – author's note) believes that presenting this picture without friendly warning would be rude. We are about to be presented with the story of Frankenstein, the scientist who tried to create man in his own image, regardless of God. This is one of the strangest stories ever told. It concerns the two great mysteries of creation: life and death. I think this will delight you, it may shock you and even horrify you. So, if any of you feel like you don't want to expose your nerves to such stress, you now have a chance to do so… Well – we warned you!
Interestingly, the film itself was also censored – resulting in the scene in which Frankenstein's monster throws a young girl into the lake and the moment in which the scientist's work is brought to life by lightning shortened.
Probably everyone knows Dr. Frankenstein's famous cry: “He's alive! He's alive!”. In the uncensored version of the film, he can still be heard adding: “Now I know what it means to be a god”.
“Frankenstein” (even censored) was a huge success “Prince Dracula” The same year marked the beginning of the golden age of monsters at the studio worldwide.
In the following years, they also gave us, among other things, “werewolf”mentioned “Invisible Man” whether “The Creature from the Black Lagoon.”
“Frankenstein” itself had many sequels and even appearances… along with other monsters belonging to this studio – so: the merging of universes happened long before it was heard in the movies Marvel and DC.
However, it is worth noting that Boris Karloff – The actor who played the monster – only appeared in the first three (best) films of the entire series. The actor later added that he saw no point in continuing to play the legendary monster because there was nothing left to add to his character.
Well, maybe the jokes aside – below you can see a behind-the-scenes recording of the production “Senna Frankenstein”The third film with Karloff in the role of the monster.
The monster, my greatest friend
It is undeniable that without Karloff's charisma and his way of playing a character who communicates with the world through groans, growls and gestures, the film itself might not have been such a success.
His “monster” was not an inherently “evil” person – as shown in later productions depicting the monster leading to the shallowness of his character. His version of the “Beast” was a lost being that the world hated for even existing. The natural reaction of such a person is fear, but also aggression as a form of defence.
Understandably, some today have more sympathy for the monster than for the angry, pitchfork-wielding mob. It is not about changing times or the sensitivity of the viewer, but rather about a conscious assessment of the situation, who is the victim and who is the aggressor.
In 1963, a journalist asked Karloff if he regretted being portrayed as a monster. “No, I don’t think so,” the actor replied. This monster turned out to be the best friend I ever had. It changed my whole life. I was an actor unknown to anyone when I suddenly had this amazing opportunity (to play this character, author's note). My career has been ongoing ever since. 32 years have passed and you still ask me about him. “I couldn't have asked for anything better.”
It is worth noting that he is currently working on a new version of the classic story of “Frankenstein.” Guillermo del Torodirector, among others Oscar-winning “shape of water”. The information has just appeared on the Internet Jacob Al-Wardi He will play the monster in the new film adaptation.
Time will tell whether his creation will become as immortal as Frankenstein's monster himself.
Finally, as an interesting fact, it should be noted that “Frankenstein” from 1931 has survived It was restored and reassembled only in the 1980s. the last century. in TVN24 service for the year 2011 He also reported a surprising discovery.
Some frames of this film were found… Vatican Film Archive.
The website stressed that “it is not known how the photograph from this film reached the Vatican's film archive, the vast majority of which consists of recordings of events with the participation of popes and religious ceremonies.”
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