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Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed
Theatrical release poster by Tom Chantrell
Directed byTerence Fisher
Screenplay byBert Batt
Story byAnthony Nelson Keys
Bert Batt
Produced byAnthony Nelson Keys
StarringPeter Cushing
Freddie Jones
Simon Ward
Veronica Carlson
CinematographyArthur Grant
Edited byGordon Hales
Music byJames Bernard
Distributed byWarner Bros.-Seven Arts
Release date
  • 22 May 1969 (1969-05-22)

  • 11 February 1970 (1970-02-11)
Running time
U.K.: 98 min/U.S.: 101 min.
CountryUnited Kingdom
Box office586,439 admissions (France)[1]

Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed is a 1969 British horror film directed by Terence Fisher for Hammer Films, starring Peter Cushing, Freddie Jones, Veronica Carlson and Simon Ward.[2] The film is the fifth in a series of Hammer films focusing on Baron Frankenstein, who, in this entry, terrorises those around him in a bid to uncover the secrets of a former associate confined to a lunatic asylum.


After being forced to leave Bohemia due to his mad experiments, Baron Victor Frankenstein lodges at a boarding house in Austria-Hungary run by Anna Spengler and builds a secret laboratory in his room.

Anna's fiance Karl Holst is a doctor at the local insane asylum where Frankenstein's former assistant, Dr. Frederick Brandt, now resides after suffering a mental breakdown due to Frankenstein's experiments.

Frankenstein discovers Karl has been stealing narcotics in order to support Anna's ailing mother. In exchange for not reporting Karl to the authorities, Frankenstein blackmails him into assisting him with the kidnapping of Brandt in order to cure his sanity so the two can continue their work together. Karl reluctantly agrees to help him.

While Karl is attending to Brandt, Frankenstein rapes Anna and blackmails her into not telling Karl.

Meanwhile, Brandt has a heart attack, necessitating Frankenstein and Karl to kidnap the asylum's administrator, Professor Richter, so they can transplant Brandt's brain into his body and save him. They succeed and bury Brandt's body. The body is soon exhumed by the police, forcing Frankenstein, Karl and Anna to relocate to an empty house with Brandt.

Later, Brandt recovers and Anna lets him escape. Enraged, Frankenstein kills Anna and goes after Brandt.

Brandt makes it to his former home, but his wife Ella refuses to believe he is her husband. Wanting revenge and knowing Frankenstein will eventually find him there, Brandt allows Ella to go free and waits for Frankenstein.

Frankenstein soon arrives, and Brandt sets the house ablaze to trap him. Karl arrives to avenge Anna’s murder, but Brandt shoots him, presumably killing him. The film ends with Frankenstein and Brandt apparently dying in the fire.



The scene where Frankenstein rapes Anna was filmed over the objections of both Peter Cushing and Veronica Carlson, and director Terence Fisher, who halted it when he felt enough was enough.[3] It was not in the original script, but the scene was added at the insistence of Hammer executive James Carreras, who was under pressure to keep the American distributors happy.[3] This explains why there is no mention of the rape subsequently by Anna or Frankenstein.

The scenes featuring Thorley Walters as Inspector Frisch were also late additions to the original script; they have been described as unnecessary, adding an unwelcome element of comedy into the suspenseful story and also making the film too long.[4][5][6]

Welsh version

In 1978, the Welsh television station HTV Cymru/Wales broadcast a version dubbed into the Welsh language called Rhaid Dinistrio Frankenstein, a more-or-less literal translation of the English title. This was one of three films that were dubbed into Welsh, another being Shane, with Alan Ladd. Both these were rebroadcast on the new Welsh language channel S4C on its launch in 1982.[7]


Variety called the film "a good-enough example of its low-key type, with artwork rather better than usual (less obvious backcloths, etc.) a minimum of artless dialogue, good lensing by Arthur Grant and a solid all round cast."[8] The Monthly Film Bulletin called it "the most spirited Hammer horror in some time. The crudities still remain, of course, but the talk of transplants and drugs seem to have injected new life into the continuing story of Baron Frankenstein."[9]

Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed currently holds an average 70% on Rotten Tomatoes.[10]

See also


  1. ^ Box office information for Terence Fisher films in France at Box office Story
  2. ^ "Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed | BFI | BFI". Archived from the original on 4 August 2012. Retrieved 10 April 2014.
  3. ^ a b Hallenbeck, Bruce G. (2013). The Hammer Frankenstein: British Cult Cinema. Midnight Marquee Press. pp. 167, 170. ISBN 978-1936168330.
  4. ^ "Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed - Terence Fisher, Peter Cushing, Hammer Studios 1969". Retrieved 10 April 2014.
  5. ^ "Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed (1969) - Trivia". Retrieved 10 April 2014.
  6. ^ "Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed 1969 | Britmovie | Home of British Films". Britmovie. Archived from the original on 13 April 2014. Retrieved 10 April 2014.
  7. ^ "Frankenstein Film Dubbed In Welsh". Sarasota Herald-Tribune. 14 September 1978. Retrieved 24 January 2017.
  8. ^ "Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed". Variety: 40. 11 June 1969.
  9. ^ "Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed". The Monthly Film Bulletin. 36 (426): 146. July 1969.
  10. ^ "Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 10 April 2014.

External links

This page was last edited on 26 July 2021, at 02:34
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