July 12, 2008
Bride of Frankenstein
It's as if someone watched Frankenstein, then read the original novel, and said, "Wait a minute, we missed out on a ton of great stuff here!" and then decided to make Bride of Frankenstein.
Put this one on that small list of "sequels that were superior to their predecessors" along with Empire Strikes Back, Toy Story 2, Godfather 2, and The Two Towers. (Which others would you add?)
Bride of Frankenstein is more clever, Frankenstein's monster learns to speak and becomes much more sympathetic, it has a large dose of humor that was completely absent in the first, and it's just all around more entertaining. But mostly it revolves around the needed for companionship and the pain of unrequited love.
I had a professor this last year who said he would give us $20 if we could name 3 popular movies that dealt with unrequited love. We couldn't think of 3. I came up with 2 - Hunchback of Notre Dame and Edward Scissorhands. And now, I could totally get that $20 because Bride of Frankenstein makes that list. (Can you think of any others.)
He maintained that unrequited love was not a popular theme in movies because it's just too painful for humans to face, and people don't want to be reminded of it. We can handle loss, we can handle suffering, we can handle death and all that stuff. But the idea of loving something that just cannot or will not love you back is unbearable.
I wrote my professor today to tell him and he was happy that I thought of it. I also made the observation that it's strange that the only 3 I could think of involved freaks or monsters, and that still fits within his theory. We can't handle it happening to actual people, they have to be cursed creatures.
3 out of 4
Posted by jason on July 12, 2008 02:45 AM
What about Little Women?--Laurie (is that how you spell it if its a guys name?) and Joe March. He asks her to marry him repeatedly, but she rebuffs him every time. It breaks my heart when she marries an old german dude named Friedrich instead.
Posted by: jessica on July 12, 2008 04:23 AM
Oh, good one!
Posted by: jason on July 12, 2008 04:35 AM
Sense & Sensibility
Posted by: kate on July 12, 2008 09:40 AM
Probably the best example of unrequited love that I can think of is Casablanca. No freaks or monsters there. Except for Nazis.
It's much more prominent in the book, but Lord of the Rings deals with Eowin and Aragorn.
"Somewhere in Time" with Christopher Reeve is about two lovers separated by time. But they cheat and meet in the afterlife, so I'm not sure if that counts.
Oh, and for sequels? I liked Spider-man, but Spider-man 2 was better.
Posted by: Peaj on July 12, 2008 06:26 PM
The Object of My Affection is an example of unrequited love, but I don't know how "popular" it is. What about Gone With the Wind? Didn't Scarlett love Ashley, but he loved Melanie (was that the name of Olivia deHaviland's character?)? Also, what about Superman? Clark Kent loved Lois Lane, but she loved Superman. Even though they were the same person, she didn't know that. And, in the first Spiderman, didn't Harry love MJ?
Posted by: Kathiek on July 13, 2008 01:12 AM
Really good post! I've never seen the "Bride of Frankenstein", but now I really want to. "The Hunchback of Notre Dame" destroyed me- I saw it as a kid with my mom and we both just sat in the living room bawling our eyes out as the credits rolled. I haven't watched it since. Apart from some of the examples others have given, I can't think of movies with the theme of unrequited love. I'll let you know if I think of one.
Posted by: Susan on July 13, 2008 07:51 PM