One of my favorite of their movies is Abbott & Costello Meet Frankenstein (Amazon link to the dvd). It is nothing short of Entertainment Heaven, each and every time I watch it.
I love this one to distraction – in spite of the fact it is the most inappropriately named movies of all time! Meet Frankenstein? Old Frank is seldom actually onscreen (especially when compared to Dracula or the Wolf Man) and doesn’t have much to say for himself when he is! I can only assume that since Frankenstein was big at the time, they went with Frankenstein over Dracula or the Wolf Man, both of whom are onscreen a lot more.
Title aside, I love everything about this movie. When you sit down to watch an Abbott and Costello movie, you do so with the intentions of leaving everything behind – work, chores, headaches, news, politics, crazy drivers, and so on. You have to just let yourself have fun and enjoy the laughs – you also have to remember that this particular movie was made in 1948, so the effects are going to be…. wellll, you can see more realistic effects on Scooby Doo, but Frank-ly I absolutely do not care.
Truth be told, they’re part of what makes this movie (and all classic movies, as far as I’m concerned) so darn special. I wouldn’t change a thing about this movie – not even the title, because in its own way it’s part of what makes Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein deliciously unique.
Bud Abbott and Lou Costello Meet Frankenstein
Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein features a wonderful cast. Count Dracula is deliciously played by Béla Lugosi. The Wolfman is brought to furry life by Lon Chaney Jr., and Frankenstein is played by veteran monster Glenn Strange.
At the end of the movie, watch (and listen) for an appearance by the Invisible Man. You’ll recognize the voice as that of Vincent Price. This was actually before he went on to superstardom.
- The movie was originally titled, “The Brain of Frankenstein” (apparently they were adamant that Frankenstein appear in the title somewhere!)
- The director was Charles Barton, a close friend of both Abbott and Costello’s. Most people consider him to the the duo’s best director.
- One of the funniest scenes in the movie involves Wilbur (Costello) unknowingly sitting on Frankenstein’s lap. The scene required multiple shots because Costello was allowed to improvise, which caused Glen Strange (Frankenstein) to constantly break out laughing!
- Charles Barton also directed 1959’s classic The Shaggy Dog .
- Lenore Aubert (Sandra) was born in present-day Slovenia. She teamed up with the duo again 1949’s Abbott and Costello Meet the Killer, Boris Karloff.
Chick: I don’t get it. Out of all the guys around here that classy dish has to pick out a guy like you.
Wilbur: What’s wrong with that?
Chick: Go look at yourself in the mirror sometime.
Wilbur: Why should I hurt my own feelings?
Larry Talbot (Wolfman): You don’t understand. Every night when the moon is full, I turn into a wolf.
Wilbur: You and twenty million other guys.
Chick Young: You’re making enough noise to wake up the dead!
Wilbur Grey: I don’t have to wake him up. He’s up.
Lenore Aubert and Lou Costello