Coming from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment in time for the season of spookiness are four memorable faces with UNIVERSAL CLASSIC MONSTERS ICONS OF HORROR COLLECTION.
In 1931 Garrett Fort wrote a screenplay all about the monster created by Bram Stoker in the 1897 novel DRACULA. The vampire creature from Transylvania would terrorize victims because of his need for human blood. Universal Pictures would find their vampire in Hungarian born actor Bela Lugosi and audiences ran to theatres to be frightened and thrilled.
Lugosi spent years of his career continuing to entertain in the monster genre leaving a lasting mark by just saying his name alone. Now an icon, DRACULA became recognized in 2000 by the United States Library of Congress to be preserved in the National Film Registry.
That same year, another creature created by author Mary Shelley in 1818 would come to the screen in the film FRANKENSTEIN. Director James Whale along with Universal Pictures brought the creature who was created by scientist Frankenstein to life. Finding their Frankenstein’s monster came with Indian-British actor Boris Karloff who would return again in 1935 for BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN and 1939 for SON OF FRANKENSTEIN.
THE INVISIBLE MAN arrived in theatres in 1933 with the return of James Whale in the director seat. Universal Pictures brings the H.G. Wells story to the screen finding their Dr. Jack Griffin in Claude Rains. A man in glasses and bandages lives alone until he is discovered to be invisible and when he is offered help, tragedy strikes again and again.
Rains’ career is filled with roles such as MR. SMITH GOES TO WASHINGTON, CASABLANCA, NOTORIOUS and my personal favorite NOW, VOYAGER.
He returned to the genre again in 1941 with THE WOLF MAN as director George Waggner and Universal Pictures brought the story to the silver screen. Actor Lon Chaney Jr. would bring the story of a man who is bitten by a wolf and during a full moon discovers that his life will never be the same.
Universal Pictures Home Entertainment has just added an amazing film to their library and making it available for us to all experience and re-experience in our own home theaters. There are films of every genre available from scary to drama to family films. For more of what they have to offer please visit www.uphe.com.
MOVIES ANYWHERE gives viewers the ability to download the Movies Anywhere App. With that you can view films by downloading or streaming to your favorite device using a Digital Code. For more information on Movies Anywhere please visit www.MoviesAnywhere.com.
The Classic Monster Films include: The 90th Anniversary of DRACULA, the 90th Anniversary of FRANKENSTEIN, THE INVISIBLE MAN and the 80th Anniversary of THE WOLF MAN.
There is hours of Bonus Content including: The Road to DRACULA, The FRANKENSTEIN Files: How Hollywood Made a Monster, Karloff: The Gentle Monster, Monster by Moonlight, THE WOLF MAN: From Ancient Curse to Modern Myth, Now You See Him THE INVISIBLE MAN Revealed, 1931 Spanish Version of DRACULA, Behind-The-Scenes Documentaries, Featurettes on Bela Lugosi, Boris Karloff and Lon Chaney Jr., Feature Commentaries, Theatrical Trailers and More!
As a young kid (without giving my age away), my mother use to have us gather around the television on Friday and Saturday nights to watch Lugosi, Karloff, Chaney Jr. and Rains give us chills. It began my love of what I would call ‘thrillers’ because I never saw these creatures as monsters.
Instead, I saw them as a reflection of our own fears and the potential we all have of a dark side. Hidden behind pointy teeth, body hair, or bolts in the neck, it would be the invisible man who would prove that what is ‘monstrous’ does not always have to be in plain sight.
The story of monsters were written down in the 1800’s with DRACULA and FRANKENSTEIN showing us that even 200 years ago people were aware of what scares us. Stoker and Shelley also gave us a glimpse of the possibility that there may be something more than evil driving their actions.
H.G. Wells took the idea even further by taking away the outward appearance of fright by making the monster invisible. Presenting the question of ‘if you can not see it, is it still evil?’ has brought many conversations among my film friends.
THE WOLF MAN is a little different because here is a man who was not born, created or whipped up in a lab but instead became a monster. Chaney Jr. is torn (no pun intended) by what has happened to him and the fight to regain his soul.
Universal Pictures has brought a powerful, thoughtful and belief in helping us to remember what a classic film looks and feels like. Even 90 years later, we talk about the genre, performances and what the films have come to mean. Having this collection in a home entertainment library means pop that popcorn and gather up like minded horror-thriller fans to re-live the greatness of cinema.
In the end – celebrate our monsters!