Happy Monster Monday, fiends! In honor of Women in Horror Month, today’s monster is the most iconic woman in horror history: the Bride of Frankenstein. Played by Elsa Lanchester, the Bride is only in the film for a few minutes, but Lanchester’s performance – aided by James Whale’s direction, Jack Pierce’s makeup, and Vera West’s costume design – created a female horror icon whose impact on pop culture has yet to be matched.
The first time I saw Bride of Frankenstein, I was shocked at how little screen time the title character had – as legendary as she is, I was expecting her to appear in more of the 75-minute running time than any other cast member. But Lanchester didn’t need 75 minutes to make an impression; hell, she didn’t even need five. Her performance is mesmerizing – with terrified, jerky movements; animalistic hisses; and wide, uncomprehending eyes – and as soon as I saw it I understood how she turned a few minutes of screen time into one of film’s most memorable roles.
If you haven’t seen Bride of Frankenstein yet, let these gorgeous shots entice you to enjoy the finest that Universal Horror has to offer:
Have a good week, fiends. I’ll see you tomorrow as the Women in Horror Month festivities continue. Now: go forth and be creepy.