Film: Mary Shelley's Frankenstein
Did you ever consider the consequences of your actions? You made me, and you left me to die. Who am I?
Victor Frankenstein: You? I don't know.
The Creature: And you think that I am evil.
The 1994 film version of Mary Shelley
, directed by Kenneth Branagh
. Unlike Bram Stoker's Dracula
, this is actually much closer to the original novel, although many new elements were still added to the story.
At the turn of the 19th century, a ship searching for a route to the North Pole encounters a man wandering the ice. Nearing death, the man says his name is Victor Frankenstein, and he relates a story to the captain explaining how his attempts to play God and reverse Death caused the destruction of his entire world.
This film contains examples of the following Tropes:
- Adaptation Expansion: Justine's character is developed a little further. And then there's a little subplot about reviving Elizabeth.
- And Show It to You: Though in this case, The Creature actually goes through with his threat and rips out Elizabeth's heart.
- Big "NO!": About a dozen or so.
- Cool Guns: Dr. Frankenstein, when riding to meet The Creature on the mountain, packs a pepperbox rifle.
- Downer Ending
- Faking the Dead: Multiple times, thanks to how the creature looks.
- Fastball Special: The Creature fends off an angry mob this way.
- Gorgeous Period Dress: The movie is set in the late 18th century. Cross with The Dung Ages - unlike pre-1990s films set in a clean and idealized version of the 17th-18th centuries, it shows plainly the dirt and grime of everyday life.
- Ironic Echo: "Raw materials. Nothing more."
- Kill It with Fire: More like, Kill Yourself With Fire. Elizabeth is not happy with being resurrected by Victor.
- Kubrick Stare: Branagh films himself glowering at Cleese's Professor Waldman from under his lowered brow as he insists that he can succeed where his mentor has failed.
- Large Ham: Synonomous with Kenneth Branagh.
- Licensed Pinball Table: From Sega Pinball, released in 1995. Click here for details.
- Made of Explodium: Frankenstein Manor, when a flaming Elizabeth runs through it, everything around her inexplicably explodes
- Mad Scientist: Although not the usual hammy bombastic type, Victor's not entirely psychologically stable.
- Mix-and-Match Man: Justified. The main body used was of a crippled man.
- Mummies at the Dinner Table/Necromantic: After The Creature kills Elizabeth, Victor immediately sets out to revive her. It works, but she quickly kills herself when she realizes what she has become.
- Not Blood Siblings: Granted, Elizabeth was adopted when Victor was just a little boy. Still, when they're kissing passionately as adults, they both admit that even if they were blood related, they would still love each other.
- Not Using the Z Word: Branagh banned the word "Monster" from being used on the set, and instead insisted everyone refer to De Niro's character as the "Sharp Featured Man".
- Of Corsets Sexy: AKA the "Helena Bonham Carter special!"
- Oh, Crap: When Victor realizes that his journal (with his name and hometown in it) was in the pocket of the coat The Creature took.
- Pet the Dog: The Creature initially takes refuge in a poor family's barn, and harvests their crops at night. He even saves a blind old man from being beaten.
- Pragmatic Adaptation: The film takes a part of the book that was often considered a wasted opportunity ( Victor using the tech that created the monster to revive Elizabeth) and changed it to make it a more emotional eerie part of the movie.
- Psycho Electric Eel: What Frankenstein uses to animate The Creature, rather than lightning. How he got them in the middle of Switzerland is anyone's guess.
- Shirtless Scene: Victor's preferred method of doing lab work.
- Shown Their Work: In order to talk more like a person re-learning to speak, De Niro studied recovering stroke victims.
- Soulless Shell: It seem that's what happens to Elizabeth at first, though moments later she regains at least part of her consciousness and commits suicide. Read Mummies at the Dinner Table/Necromantic above.
- Spared by the Adaptation: Henry Clerval, Victor's best friend. Maybe. We never see him die on-screen.
- Truer To The Text: The intent was to make a more faithful adaptation of the book than previous films had been (hence the In Case You Forgot Who Wrote It title). It has its own quirks, though.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: Whatever happened to Henry? The last time we saw him is him doing a Big "NO!" as Victor's revving up his Reanimatormatic, and then....we just leave him there in the burning house.
- What Have I Done: Victor's reaction to seeing The Creature alive.
- Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: You can't really blame The Creature for being the way it is.
- There's a moment during the Creature's escape where it's hiding in an alley. It picks up a piece of fur cloth and begins to stroke it nervously in terror, giving it such a child-like and tragic innocence.
This film averts the following tropes common to most Frankenstein movies: