Director: James Whale
Notable Cast: Boris Karloff
Major changes were made to the novel’s plot for this classic horror movie. Most significantly, Karloff’s Monster is neither intelligent nor articulate.
The Curse of Frankenstein (1957)
Director: Terence Fisher
Notable Cast: Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing
The Curse of Frankenstein is more a horror movie than it is an adaptation of Shelley’s novel. Frankenstein is a murderer, while the Monster is violent and dangerous from the moment of his creation.
Director: David Wickes
Notable Cast: Randy Quaid
Amongst other major plot changes, the Monster is “cloned” from Frankenstein. The monster and Frankenstein share a psychic bond.
Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein (1994)
Director: Kenneth Branagh
Notable Cast: Kenneth Branagh, Robert DeNiro, Helena Bonham-Carter, Ian Holm
Although this movie is probably the most faithful adaptation of Shelley’s novel made so far, it has major differences from the novel: Frankenstein creates a female Monster from the bodies of Elizabeth and Justine.
Director: Jed Mercurio
Notable Cast: Helen McCrory, James Purefoy
In this adaptation with a modern setting, Dr. Victoria Frankenstein clones her terminally-ill son.
Director: Bernard Rose
Notable Cast: Carrie-Anne Moss
This adaptation has a modern setting, but it is faithful in spirit to Shelley’s novel. Husband-and-wife team Victor and Elizabeth create a young man with genetic deformities and the mind of a child.
Victor Frankenstein (2015)
Director: Paul McGuigan
Notable Cast: James McAvoy, Daniel Radcliffe
This adaptation focuses on a character not found in Shelley’s novel: Frankenstein’s assistant Igor.