Frankenstein (1931)

18 mistakes

(6 votes)

Revealing mistake: There is a large painted hanging cloth backdrop of clouds in the mountain scenes near the end of the film. Vertical streaks can be seen in the backdrop that are the pleats in the fabric. These streaks really stand out in the restored versions of the film.

Continuity mistake: When Fritz is trying to steal a brain, he gets scared by a skeleton, which he grabs down, causing it to bounce up and down (since it is hanging from a hook up on the ceiling). But in the next shot, the skeleton is hardly moving. Yet when Fritz realizes he has dropped the brain, the skeleton is bouncing up and down again. (00:08:40)

Continuity mistake: When the sedative (which Dr. Waldman gives the monster in the back) kicks in, the Monster collapses to the ground, onto his back. But when Henry opens the door for Victor, the Monster is now lying facedown. (00:37:55)

Continuity mistake: During a lesson on brains, there are two jars with type-written labels ('Cerebrum - Normal Brain' and 'Disfunctio Cerebri - Abnormal). But when Fritz approaches the containers to steal the brain, the labels (Normal and Abnormal) are handwritten. (00:07:15 - 00:08:45)

Continuity mistake: The monster's coat and shirt are pulled over his chest by Dr Waldman to perform a dissection. In the following shot, after the monster has just killed the doctor, he has tucked his shirt and buttoned his coat.

Dr Wilson

Continuity mistake: After the experiment with the light, the Monster sits down on a chair, waving his hands as if he was asking for more. But in the next shot, the Monster is as still as a statue. (00:33:30)

Continuity mistake: When Henry is looking for the Monster, he finds one of the villagers, Hans, lying on the ground (after getting beat up by the Monster). Henry kneels down holding his torch with his right hand, but as he stands up, the torch is now in his left hand. (01:01:20)

Continuity mistake: Just before Victor enters Elizabeth's room, there is a shot of a picture of Henry Frankenstein, which is at the same height as a lit candle. But in the next shot, when Victor and Elizabeth walk by the table (the one on the far right of the screen) where the picture stands, the candle now appears to be much higher than the picture. (00:09:20)

Continuity mistake: When Elizabeth and Baron Frankenstein visit Henry's castle, Henry, who is exhausted from fighting the Monster, falls flat onto the floor facedown. But in the next shot, when his father reaches him, Henry is now lying on his back. (00:40:35)

Continuity mistake: When Baron Frankenstein asks Victor and Elizabeth what's wrong with Henry, the Baron is holding his pipe by the stem. But in the next shot he is holding it by the bowl. (00:25:20)

Continuity mistake: At the Goldstalt Medical College, two lab assistants cover a corpse's feet with a white cloth, but in the next shot they cover the feet again. (00:06:50)

Visible crew/equipment: When Dr Frankenstein asks to the monster to enter the room so that Dr Waldman can see him, you can see the shadow of the crew moving on a pillar as the camera follows them. (00:31:20)

Dr Wilson

Continuity mistake: While Dr. Waldman is about to examine the monster he has his eyes open but in the next shot they're closed.


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Question: Why in this movie is Mr. Frankenstein's first name Henry and not Victor (like it is in the book)? If it was changed to Henry so it would not be confused with the Frankenstein's family friend Victor Moritz, why not just call Moritz something else, and keep the original name of the main character in the movie?

Answer: There seems to be no officially stated reason why the name was changed, but it's possible to theorise. There were numerous changes between the original book and the film. One theory is that these changes were to make the story more accessible to the mass audiences, and altering the name of the main character to a more common one could be seen as part of that. Another (possibly more likely) reason is down to alterations in the characters. Unlike the book, the film ultimately seeks to redeem Frankenstein's character, making him a more human and sympathetic character. Conversely, the character of Frankenstein's old friend, named Victor in the film, but Henry in the book, has been made a much less pleasant character. As Victor is quite a harsh, martial name and Henry comes across as rather more amiable, the filmmakers might well have decided that it would be more appropriate to the characters that they were trying to portray to switch the names round.

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