DVD Movie Guide @ dvdmg.com Awards & Recommendations at Amazon.com.
Review Archive:  # | A-C | D-F | G-I | J-L | M-O | P-R | S-U | V-Z | Viewer Ratings | Main


James Whale
Boris Karloff, Elsa Lanchester, Colin Clive
Writing Credits:
William Hurlbut

Goaded by an even madder scientist, Dr. Frankenstein builds his monster a mate.

Rated NR.

Aspect Ratio: 1.37:1
English DTS-HD MA Monaural
French DTS Monaural
German DTS Monaural
Italian DTS Monaural
Supplements Subtitles:

Runtime: 75 min.
Price: $79.99
Release Date: 10/11/22
Available As Part of “Universal Classic Monsters: Icons of Horror” 4-Movie Collection

• Audio Commentary with Film Historian Scott MacQueen
• “She’s Alive!” Documentary
• “The Bride of Frankenstein Archive”
• Trailer Gallery
• “Restoring the Classics” Featurette
• Blu-ray Copy


-LG OLED65C6P 65-Inch 4K Ultra HD Smart OLED TV
-Marantz SR7010 9.2 Channel Full 4K Ultra HD AV Surround Receiver
-Sony UBP-X700 4K Ultra HD Dolby Vision Blu-ray Player
-Chane A2.4 Speakers
-SVS SB12-NSD 12" 400-watt Sealed Box Subwoofer


The Bride of Frankenstein [4K UHD] (1935)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (January 22, 2023)

Few films have permeated the public consciousness as 1931's Frankenstein and its 1935 sequel The Bride of Frankenstein. At this point, actually, the two have become melded within the general view.

This means many people think of scenes from Bride as having appeared in the original. For instance, a bit where the monster meets the blind hermit often gets viewed as from 1931, not 1935.

In general, Bride seems thought of as the superior of the two films, as it frequently appears in discussions of sequels that surpass the originals. I think that while the two pictures are clearly quite similar, enough differences exist to make comparisons verge upon "apples-oranges" territory.

At the end of the first film, it appeared that Dr. Frankenstein (Colin Clive) and his monstrous creation (Boris Karloff) died. However, it turns out that they survived.

Now the Creature feels kinda lonely. Also blackmailed by sinister Dr. Pretorius (Ernest Thesiger), Dr. Frankenstein goes back to his old scientific ways – and now seeks to create a mate for his monster.

The performances in Bride definitely veer toward broader, campier tones than the more somber and straightforward work in the original. Bride also provides more action and thrills and humor.

In Frankenstein, director James Whale used a fair amount of restraint. However, he goes completely over the top in the sequel, as he aims for the fences.

The actors deliver tremendously wide performances. Ernest Thesinger's wickedly ominous Dr. Pretorious and Una O'Connor's wild-eyed and shrieky Minnie seem most active, but everyone's pretty broad. Even Clive appears to emote more strongly than he did during the first movie.

One other acting difference between the films comes from Victor's fiancée Elizabeth. In the first film, we saw blonde Mae Clarke in the role, but brunette Valerie Hobson appears in the sequel.

Apparently Clarke was too ill to star in Bride so the part was recast. In keeping with the difference in the film's tenor, Hobson's much broader than the fairly subdued Clarke.

Both films clearly show some age, since film styles have changed so much over the intervening decades, but I found both to be very entertaining and effective. Karloff remains effective and engrossing as the monster, and Whale makes both stories come alive in exciting and dramatic ways.

Despite the fact most people have an extreme familiarity with the stories, the executions works well and makes them both very compelling. Bride remains a delight.

The Disc Grades: Picture A-/ Audio B/ Bonus B-

The Bride of Frankenstein appears in an aspect ratio of 1.37:1 on this 4K UHD Disc. Given the movie’s age, the transfer dazzled.

Overall sharpness looked positive. At times, I thought wider shots appeared a smidgen soft, but those examples created only minor distractions, so the majority of the flick provided good definition.

No issues with jagged edges or shimmering appeared, and I noticed no edge enhancement. Natural grain appeared here, so the flick maintained a nice film-like appearance.

Blacks seemed solid. The film’s many dark shots demonstrated fine depth and contrast looked positive.

Low-light shots occasionally seemed a little murky, but they usually offered acceptable to good delineation. HDR added range and impact to whites and contrast.

Source flaws were minimal, as occasional instances of small specks appeared, but these were rare. Honestly, this was a wonderful presentation of the film.

I also felt the DTS-HD monaural soundtrack of Bride held up well for its age. Speech showed a thin, trebly side but was perfectly acceptable and lacked significant edginess or other flaws.

Music popped up sporadically and showed a tinny side as well. Nonetheless, the score was reasonably clear given its vintage.

Effects were a bit harsh but didn’t suffer from significant distortion. Only a little background noise appeared along the way, so the audio remained fairly quiet. I felt that the audio worked pretty well within the expectations of its era.

How did the 4K UHD compare to the Blu-ray version? Both displayed identical audio.

As for the 4K’s visuals, it showed an uptick in quality, with slightly superior delineation, contrast and blacks. Nothing here meant the 4K strongly topped the Blu-ray, but it became the superior product.

In terms of extras, the set leads off with an audio commentary from film historian Scott MacQueen. He provides a running, screen-specific look at story/character areas, the script and various versions/changes, censorship issues, cast/crew notes, cinematography and music, other production areas and the movie's release/impact.

My only negative impression of MacQueen's commentary relates to dead air, as we find a lot of empty spots - too many for such a short movie.

However, the content of the track adds lot of good information, so I can't complain about MacQueen's material. Even with the blank spaces, we learn many fine notes about Bride in this engaging chat.

Hosted by filmmaker Joe Dante, She's Alive: Creating The Bride Of Frankenstein goes for 38 minutes, 52 seconds and includes notes from MacQueen, Father of Frankenstein author Christopher Bram, film historians Paul M. Jensen, Gregory W. Mank and Bob Madison, Boris Karloff’s daughter Sara, author/filmmaker Clive Barker, Gods and Monsters writer/director Bill Condon, makeup artist Rick Baker, and actor’s son Dwight D. Frye.

“Alive” covers the original Frankenstein and the development of the sequel, cast and crew, story, characters and performances, makeup and effects, sets and production design, music, censorship and cut sequences, themes and interpretation, and the film’s legacy. The documentary offers a fairly satisfying overview of Bride.

Within the Bride of Frankenstein Archive, we find a running compilation of images. This 13-minute, 11-second reel shows various ads and production photos. I’m not wild about the format – I’d prefer a standard still gallery – but I like the content.

In the Trailers Gallery, we find four promos. This area includes clips for Frankenstein, Bride of Frankenstein, Ghost of Frankenstein and House of Frankenstein.

Finally, the set finishes with a featurette called 100 Years of Universal: Restoring the Classics. It goes for nine minutes, 13 seconds and offers statements from Universal Studios Vault Services VP of Image Assets/Preservation Bob O’Neil, Universal Studios Technical Services VP Peter Schade, Kodak Pro-Tek Media Preservation VP of Preservation Services Rick Utley, Universal Studios Digital Services engineer Henry Ball, Universal Studios Technical Services mastering supervisor Phil Defibaugh, Universal Studios Technical Services mastering supervisor Ken Tom, and Universal Studios Technical Services supervising sound editor John Edell.

“Restoring” covers all the procedures used to bring Bride and other movies to Blu-ray. It’s a reasonably informative take on the subject.

A second disc provides a Blu-ray copy of Bride. It includes the same extras as the 4K.

The Bride of Frankenstein may not shock and terrify audiences like it did in 1935. Nonetheless, it remains entertaining and compelling. The 4K UHD delivers excellent picture, positive audio and a small but informative set of supplements. The movie holds up well and looks better than ever on this terrific 4K.

Note that as of January 2023, the 4K UHD version of Bride of Frankenstein appears only as part of a four-movie “Universal Classic Monsters: Icons of Horror Collection”. In addition to Bride, it also includes The Mummy, The Phantom of the Opera (1943) and Creature from the Black Lagoon.

To rate this film, visit the prior review of BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN

Review Archive:  # | A-C | D-F | G-I | J-L | M-O | P-R | S-U | V-Z | Viewer Ratings | Main