Blu-ray Review: Frankenstein Created Woman (1967, Dir. Terence Fisher)

Frankenstein Created Woman

Frankenstein Created Woman unexpectedly reminded me of Beyond Re-animator (2003). In that film, the character of Herbert West becomes more interested in the “soul” and how it relates to his experiments of resurrecting dead bodies, the same can be said with Baron Frankenstein (Peter Cushing) in this fourth Frankenstein film. His experimentation on the dead has turned to trying to preserve the soul and thus the corpses personality. Separating one from the other, doing “work” on the corpse and then “re-installing” the soul back into the body is definitely an evolution of sorts from the tried and not-so-perfect resurrection of mindless, stitched together collections of body parts.

There’s a subplot that revolves around Hans Werner (Robert Morris), who along with Dr.Hertz (Thorley Walters), works for the Baron and who’s in love with the daughter of a local pub owner. Christina is routinely taunted because she was born deformed (the side of her face and the left side of her body) and that taunting continues into adulthood. Three rich young men wander into the bar one night while Hans and Christina are there and to make them pay for their malicious teasing of her, Hans fights them, but it only makes matters worse later on in the movie.

Later that night, these three, Johan (Derek Fowlds), Karl (Barry Warren) and Anton (Peter Blythe) break into the bar after it closes, bumps into Christina’s father, and in their drunken states beat him to death. Hans is framed and put to death by the guillotine. Christina witnesses his death and commits suicide by jumping off a bridge.

Frankenstein Created Woman Blu-ray Art

Opportunity arises when her corpse is brought to the Baron. After already preserving Hans’ soul in this makeshift “force field” he has created, he decides to resurrect and fix Christina’s broken body, and then put Hans’ soul into her. A problem arises; Hans is not at rest, he wants revenge for being framed and he uses Christina’s body to help him does just that.

 

Millennium Entertainment initially put this movie out last April as part of a set that also included Dracula, Prince Of Darkness (1966) and Legend Of The 7 Golden Vampires (1974). The former has already hit blu-ray here in the States and now it’s Frankenstein Created Woman’s turn.

The 1080p 1.78:1 anamorphic high definition transfer is very good-looking, and full of detail. To me it looked just as good as Millennium’s previous blu-ray of Dracula, Prince Of Darkness. (Note: the back of the blu-ray states it has a 2.35:1 aspect ratio, which is incorrect).

Extras included are a very good commentary that includes 2 of the 3 surviving actors from the movie Derek Fowlds (“Johann”) and Robert Morris (“Hans”), with Jonathan Rigby (Hammer Historian) doing the moderating. A fact I didn’t know about this flick is that another actress dubbed Susan Denberg’s voice because the studio heads felt her German accent might not be so easily deciphered.

As for featurettes, you get two episodes from the British made ‘The World of Hammer’ TV series, “The Curse of Frankenstein” (25:55) and “Hammer Stars: Peter Cushing” (24:54). The best extra on here is the new documentary, ’Hammer Glamour,’ (44:07), which gathers together some surviving members of actresses Hammer made famous in their movies. Most of the talk eventually gears towards the nudity Hammer wanted from them; Madeline Smith regrets doing her nudity in The Vampire Lovers (1970).

Rounding out the disc is an Animated Stills Gallery (7:07) of stills, behind-the-scenes shots and posters, a trailer and 5 collectible trading cards.

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