Tuesday, November 24, 2009

The Boris Karloff Blogathon: Day Three


Boris Karloff with daughter Sarah Karloff aired august 26, 2007.

“Sure, I remember Boris Karloff. He was the monster in
Frankenstein.”

Well, yes, but what about Scarface, one of the finest gangster
films ever made, directed by Howard Hawks … and The Old Dark
House, the granddaddy of all haunted house thrillers, directed by
James Whale … and The Lost Patrol, the template for all the lost
patrol films which followed, directed by John Ford? Not bad, not
bad at all.

“Boris Karloff, he was in that horror flick, Frankenstein, right?”



For sure, for sure. But if it’s Karloff and horror, let’s not stop
there. How about 1934’s The Black Cat, a wicked little gem which
teamed Karloff and Bela Lugosi for the first time? Or 1935’s The
Black Room, another nasty gem in which Karloff plays twins, one
good and the other evil (and is he ever!)? Or The Raven, from 1935?
Another Karloff/Lugosi delicious little horror thriller. These three
solid thrillers work surprisingly well even today, 70 plus years after
their releases.

“Boris Karloff, Boris Karloff? Wasn’t he in Frankenstein? Played the
monster, I think.”



Certainly did, more than once. In addition to Frankenstein, he also
played the monster in both Bride Of Frankenstein (1935) and Son Of
Frankenstein (1939). In fact, there are those who say that his
performance as the monster in Bride is the best of his career.

“I know who Boris Karloff was, he had the screws in his forehead, in
that monster flick, Frankenstein.”



Sure did. But the screws were inside his head – and definitely not
screwed too tight – in such enduring dark horror classics as The Body
Snatcher ('45), Isle Of The Dead ('45) and Bedlam ('46). All three are
Val Lewton productions, and each serves as a solid example of
Lewton’s estimable work.

“Karloff, he was always the same, wasn’t he? The Frankenstein
monster.”




Don’t tell that to Danny Kaye, who played opposite Karloff in The
Secret Life Of Walter Mitty; nor to Gary Cooper, who played opposite
Karloff in DeMille’s Unconquered, both in 1947. Not a monster in
sight, just a very, very fine actor named Boris Karloff.

Or tell that to Broadway theatergoers, who caught Karloff in Arsenic
And Old Lace and Peter Pan opposite Mary Martin and The Lark
opposite Julie Harris.

Or mention it to television viewers who caught Karloff’s Uncle Vanya
on Masterpiece Playhouse, or his title role in Don Quixote or his King
Arthur in A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court or his turn as
Father Knickerbocker in The Legend Of Sleepy Hollow.

“Karloff, Karloff? Why do I know the name. …? Oh, yeah, oh, yeah,
he was the monster in all those Frankenstein movies.”



This Sunday night, at 8 pm ET, Sarah Karloff, daughter of Boris
Karloff, discusses her father’s fascinating career on ICONS Radio
Hour with Stephen Bogart and John Mulholland. Ms. Karloff offers
first-hand anecdotes about her father’s approach to acting and,
especially revealing, his feelings about his career in horror films.

Interview Click Here.

Fonts: Icons Radio Hour

2 comments:

Filo Loco said...

thanks for that ton of infos !

MANDRA said...

Thank you so much Filo!!!!! Greetings "amigo mio"!!