Are they monsters or men? Unclassifiable creatures, possessing freakish qualities and abilities inhabit a world of their own, shocking the humans with whom they come into contact with their powers and near immortality. Before the advent of modern comic book movies Universal Studios took characters from literature, stage, and screenwriters’ imagination to the silver screen, creating a series of monster classics. From the 1920s through the 1950s cinemas across the United States became home to the likes of Dracula, The Wolf Man, The Creature from the Black Lagoon, and Frankenstein. Join us for a retrospective of some of the best horror, science fiction, and suspense classics this October as we present Universal Monsters.
“It’s alive!” Shocking in its day and still a genuinely creepy experience, director James Whale’s primitive yet enthralling interpretation of Mary Shelley’s classic tale of man playing God is the most influential genre movie ever made. Its success kick-started the golden age of horror for Universal Studios and provided inspiration for scores of imitators and successors. Boris Karloff breathes miraculous life into his definitive monster portrayal: the most touching moment is the creature reaching up to grasp a ray of sunlight. A superb cast, imaginative set design and Whale’s innovative direction using bizarre camera angles invoke a remarkably tense and melancholy atmosphere, while the creation scene itself is a masterpiece of gothic science gone mad. (Radio Times)