The Bride

500 Movie Challenge: The Bride

The BrideIn all my years of watching classic stories become movies, there’s no more interesting case to me than The Bride of Frankenstein. This is just a few sections in the original book, and has become a weird pop culture symbol. There are lots of movies about the Bride, but none that really explore what happened after her creation. Except The Bride! So I had to see it.

The gist: The movie starts at the birth of the Bride of Frankenstein, and we’re all holding our breath to see the beautiful woman emerge. Dr. Frankenstein himself (played by a very watchable Sting) presents her to his monster, and she predictably squeals and runs away from the malformed man. The monster (understandably) freaks out about her rejection and attacks the doctor. The entire lab is destroyed, killing Igor and forcing Frankenstein’s monster to flee without his intended bride.

Months pass. Sting decides to keep the Bride and train her to become a proper lady. Passing her off as a rescued vagrant with no memory of her origin, Sting presents her to society and teaches her about how the world works, Sexual possession starts to grow on his part, because of course it does. All the while, Frankenstein’s monster roams the world, making a friend in Renaldo the circus dwarf (a very fun David Rappaport). He learns how to work and tries to save up money, all the better to go back and woo his Bride.

What I “learned”: The schmexy sexy movies of the 1990’s had a predecessor that I wish would come back: The stylized quest movie. The Bride was made in 1985, same year as my beloved The Princess Bride), but this feels like the precursor to the ever-present schmexiness. The quest of Frankenstein’s monster breaks up the sumptuous sexual awakening of the Bride, which is great. I feel like more schmexy sexy movies could have stood to have more concurrent plots to balance their stories.

But hey, maybe that will come back. Pacific Rim was great about balancing action with human moments; I say we can have hope.

See this movie if you like: An “explainer” movie for a classic story. You know the type—the “real story” or concurrent story that explains a classic tale in a way that jives with our current sensibilities. This is a particularly good explainer movie because it expands upon a very loose and vague part of the original story (meaning the original Frankenstein movie, because the Bride was never actually formed in the book). We know from the original movie that the Bride rejects Frankenstein’s monster initially, but then we mostly left it alone from there. This movie expands the story in such a way that all the characters still feel like the same people as before. There’s just more detail.

Avoid this movie if: The schmexy sexy movies of the 1990s wear thin on you. If you’re tired of that aesthetic, this show is definitely not for you.

New Films Watched: 43

Films Re-Watched: 2

Total Number of Films: 45

poltergeist Princess Dread Movie Challenge

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