31 Days of Horror: Film #26 YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN
Okay, so it’s a comedy, not a horror film. Still, you know, it’s Frankenstein. I know it's cheating but I figure it fits with the October theme well enough.
I’m not really a Mel Brooks fan. But I LOVE Young Frankenstein.
Young Frankenstein is about the grandson of the infamous Dr. Frankenstein who discovers his grandfather’s notebook (titled ‘How I Did It’) and decides to try his hand and reanimating the dead. Hilarity ensues.
The cast is brilliant. Gene Wilder, Marty Feldman, Madeline Kahn, Teri Garr, Peter Boyle, there’s not a weak link to be found.
The script written by Brooks and Wilder is the best work that either have done, I think. It packs more laughs per minute than most comedies could ever hope for.
One of the things I love most about Young Frankenstein is the decision to shoot it in black and white. The Blu-ray I just added to my collection actually shows color photos on the case and I was left wondering if I remembered the movie wrong. I guess color sells better than black and white. And that’s too bad. This is a gorgeous looking movie and it really evokes the visual qualities of the original James Whale film with Boris Karloff.
I like that the film clearly has some love for the original Frankenstein and the monster movies of old. Other ‘spoof’-like comedies have a somewhat more cynical edge, like they’re laughing at the source material instead of just having fun with it. Cynical comedy is fine but it may be that it doesn’t age as well.
Young Frankenstein is a movie that I could watch again and again. I find that I don’t feel that way about many comedies. This one’s special.
Writer of horror, science fiction, and dark fantasy. Lover of books and film. Lifelong Godzilla fan. Reluctant blogger.
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