New Reviews
Django Unchained
Captain Corelli's Mandolin
Les Misérables
Chernobyl Diaries
The Cabin in the Woods

Young Frankenstein (1974)

Its alive!!

Rating: 8/10

Running Time: 108 minutes

UK Certificate: PG


Long before receiving rotten reviews for 'Dracula: Dead and Loving It', Godfather of Spoof Mel Brooks poked fun at the horror genre with the vastly superior 'Young Frankenstein'.

The marvellous Gene Wilder, who co-wrote this rib-tickler alongside Brooks, gets to display every inch of his talent for restrained send-up as the troubled Dr Frederick Frankenstein. Only that last bit's pronounced 'Fronkensteen', and he does not, under any circumstances, want to be remembered for his 'accidental relationship to a famous cuckoo.' For Frederick's grandfather, in case you haven't already worked that bit out, is Dr Victor Frankenstein, the crackpot scientist best known for taking bits of dead people and using them to build his very own monster. Well, everyone needs a hobby.

Unfortunately for Frederick, ignoring Gramps' life work turns out to be a little more difficult than he'd like, particularly as he ends up inheriting the creepy Transylvanian castle where the original monster madness took place. So, accompanied by googly-eyed servant Igor (Marty Feldman, and it's pronounced 'Eye-gor') and buxom lab assistant Inga (Teri Garr), the good doctor sets about making a groaning man-monster of his own. He's played by Peter Boyle, and he's ruddy massive.

In true Brooks style, all the generic clichés you can think of are spoofed in spades, be it a full moon, howling wolves, thunderstorms or creaky doors. As well as a smashing script (Inga: 'Werewolf!', Frederick: 'Werewolf?', Igor: 'There wolf. There castle.'), there are several classic moments including a top-hatted monster attempting an on-stage rendition of 'Putting on the Ritz'.

Though such send-ups have now lost some of their bite thanks to the Leslie Nielson-fuelled overkill of the 90s, this is still a great comedy to look back on. Despite the misleading DVD cover, it's filmed entirely in black and white – but don't let that put you off, this is one that's worth seeing.

It's Got: Hordes of angry villagers brandishing pitchforks and flaming torches.

It Needs: An additional mention for Gene Hackman, whos almost unrecognisable as the bearded blind man who accidentally pours hot soup all over the monsters lap.

DVD Extras Audio commentary with Mel Brooks, out-takes and deleted scenes, trailers, TV spots, Making FrankenSense of Young Frankenstein half-hour doc with cast interviews. DVD Extras Rating: 7/10


A terrifically-written and well-observed parody of practically every Frankenstein flick ever made. One of Mel Brooks' best.