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9am-noon ‘It’s Alive – ALIVE!’ Frankenstein Themed Film making course. Grades 3-7.
1pm Abbot and Costello Meet Frankenstein (Family Friendly!)
It seems that Count Dracula (Bela Lugosi), in league with a beautiful but diabolical lady scientist (Lenore Aubert), needs a “simple, pliable” brain with which to reactivate Frankenstein’s creature (Glenn Strange). The “ideal” brain belongs to the hapless Lou Costello, whom the lady doctor woos to gain his confidence and lure him to the operating table. Lawrence Talbot (Lon Chaney Jr.), better known as the Wolf Man, arrives on the scene to warn Costello and his pal Bud Abbott of Dracula’s nefarious schemes. Throughout the film, the timorous Costello witnesses the nocturnal rituals of Dracula and the Monster, but can’t convince the ever-doubting Abbott–until the wild climax in Dracula’s castle, where the comedians are pursued by all three of the film’s monstrosities. As a bonus, the Invisible Man (voiced by an unbilled Vincent Price) shows up for “all the excitement.” Reserve Now
3pm Frankenstein (1931) with Boris Karloff.
Special pre and post film discussion with film expert Richard Gorey
Richard Gorey is an animator and a screenwriter who lectures on film at the School of Visual Arts and Parsons /The New School. He has hosted classic movie screenings in Manhattan and Bronxville, and has been writing about film for twenty years. His illustrated novel, “The Great Rabbit Rip-off” is available on Amazon.com.
Still regarded as the definitive film version of Mary Shelley’s classic tale of tragedy and horror, Frankenstein made unknown character actor Boris Karloff a star and created a new icon of terror. Along with the highly successful Dracula, released earlier the same year, it launched Universal Studio’s golden age of 1930s horror movies. The film’s greatness stems less from its script than from the stark but moody atmosphere created by director James Whale; Herman Rosse’s memorable set designs, particularly the fantastic watchtower laboratory, featuring electrical equipment designed by Kenneth Strickfaden; the creature’s trademark look from makeup artist Jack Pierce, who required Karloff to don pounds of makeup and heavy asphalt shoes to create the monster’s unique lurching gait; and Karloff’s nuanced performance as the tormented and bewildered creature. Frankenstein was greeted with screams, moans, and fainting spells upon its initial release, obliging Universal to add a disclaimer in which Edward Van Sloan advises the faint of heart to leave the theater immediately. If they don’t: “Well…we’ve warned you.” Director James Whale was memorably embodied by Ian McKellen in the Oscar-winning 1998 biopic Gods and Monsters. Reserve Now
8pm Young Frankenstein
Lending his burlesque touch to 1970s genre revision, Mel Brooks followed his hit “western” Blazing Saddles with this parody of 1930s Universal horror movies. Determined to live down his family’s reputation, Dr. Frederick Frankenstein (co-screenwriter Gene Wilder) insists on pronouncing his name “Fronckensteen” and denies interest in replicating his grandfather’s experiments. But when he is lured by Frau Blucher (Cloris Leachman) to discover the tantalizingly titled journal “How I Did It” in his grandfather’s castle, he cannot resist. With the help of voluptuous Inga (Teri Garr), wall-eyed assistant Igor (Marty Feldman), and a purloined brain, Frankenstein creates his monster (Peter Boyle). Igor, however, stole the wrong brain, and the monster tears off into the countryside, encountering a little girl and a blind hermit (Gene Hackman). Frankenstein finds the monster and trains him to do a little “Puttin’ On the Ritz” soft-shoe, but the monster escapes again, this time seducing Frankenstein’s uptight fiancée Elizabeth (Madeline Kahn) with his, ahem, sweet mystery. His love life and experiment in shambles, Frankenstein finally finds a way to create the being he had planned. Shooting in gleaming black-and-white, with sets and props from the 1930s and appropriate fright music by John Morris, Brooks’ cheeky attitude towards the Hollywood past attracted a large audience, turning it into one of the most popular 1974 releases after (what else?) Blazing Saddles. Reserve Now
10pm Rocky Horror Picture Show
This low-budget freak show/cult classic/cultural institution concerns the misadventures of Brad Majors (Barry Bostwick) and Janet Weiss (Susan Sarandon) inside a strange mansion that they come across on a rainy night. After the wholesome pair profess their love through an opening song, their car breaks down in the woods, and they seek refuge in a towering castle nearby. Greeting them at the door is a ghoulish butler named Riff Raff (Richard O’Brien), who introduces them to a bacchanalian collection of partygoers dressed in outfits from some sort of interplanetary thrift shop. The host of this gathering is a transvestite clad in lingerie, Dr. Frank N. Furter (Tim Curry), a mad scientist who claims to be from another planet. With assistants Columbia (Nell Campbell) and Magenta (Patricia Quinn) looking on, Frank unveils his latest creation — a figure wrapped in gauze and submerged in a tank full of liquid. With the addition of colored dyes and some assistance from the weather, Frank brings to life a blonde young beefcake wearing nothing but skimpy shorts, who launches into song in his first minute of life. Just when Brad and Janet think things couldn’t get any stranger, a biker (Meat Loaf) bursts onto the scene to reclaim Columbia, his ex-girlfriend. When Frank kills the biker, it’s clear that Brad and Janet will be guests for the night, and that they may be next on Frank’s list — whether for murder or carnal delights is uncertain. And just what is that mystery meat they’re eating for dinner, anyway? In addition to playing Riff Raff, O’Brien wrote the catchy songs, with John Barry and Richard Hartley composing the score.