Arrow Video Brings Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein to Life on 4K

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Mary Shelley's Frankenstein

In 1994 director, Kenneth Branagh brought the most accurate telling of Mary Shelley’s classic novel, Frankenstein, to the big screen once again. But this time it was so faithful to the original story it turned off many casual horror fans and “normies” who were expecting a green, stitch-covered, nuts and bolts, flat top with huge boots zombie tale, who were instead given an intellectual, almost sympathetic at times, creature no one would recognize.

Hot off the heels of Bram Stoker’s Dracula, the studio was banking on this being a hit and packed the film with an all-star cast.  Robert De Niro, Helena Bonham Carter, Tom Hulce, Ian Holm, John Cleese and Aidan Quinn all did their best to build up the story, but the look of the film tends to be viewed as a dark Downton Abbey episode rather than a Classic Monsters of Filmland movie, which Francis Ford Coppola did exceedingly well with Dracula. Branagh just couldn’t capture that spark in this film, and it showed at the box office—underperforming and quickly forgotten. Until now.

The film did, however, pave the way for multiple retellings of this story in different films that used the original source material as a foundation, rather than the Karloff tried-and-true Frankenstein that everyone knows and loves. I, Frankenstein (2014) and The Frankenstein Theory (2013) also used the source material to expand the mythology, and made the monster an almost super human character with strength and intelligence.

Not my favorite Frankenstein movie, but it does rank higher than Blackenstein (1973) on my list of best Frankenstein adaptations. This release is packed with special features to warrant a spot for it in your horror collections.

New 4K restoration from the original camera negatives by Sony Pictures Entertainment

4K (2160p) UHD Blu-ray presentation in Dolby Vision (HDR10 compatible)

Original uncompressed stereo audio and DTS-HD MA 5.1 surround audio

Optional English subtitles for the deaf and hard of hearing

Brand new audio commentary by film historians Michael Brooke and Johnny Mains

Brand new interview with composer Patrick Doyle

Brand new interview with costumer designer James Acheson

Brand new interview with make-up designer Daniel Parker

Mary Shelley and The Creation of a Monster, a brand-new documentary featurette on the origins and evolution of the Frankenstein story, featuring Gothic specialists David Pirie, Jonathan Rigby and Stephen Volk

Dissecting Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, a brand-new featurette with David Pirie, Jonathan Rigby and Stephen Volk on the differences between the novel and Kenneth Branagh’s screen adaptation

Frankenstein: A Liberal Adaptation from Mrs. Shelley’s Famous Story for Edison Production (1910): The first screen adaptation of Shelley’s story in a 2K restoration by the Library of Congress, with music by Donald Sosin

Original trailers

Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork by Laz Marquez

First Pressing Only:

Illustrated collector’s booklet featuring new writing by Jon Towlson and Amy C. Chambers

2.5 / 5.0