It is 200 years since an 18 year old sprig of a woman, Mary Shelley, wrote Frankenstein in response to a challenge to enliven a sodden holiday.  Although the book has inspired all manner of interpretations, one of the most enduring is the 1931 black and white film directed by James Whale, with Boris Karloff immortalising the Creature.  For our money, this is the defining screen version!  (And it is rare to be able to show this on a big screen nowadays.)

When it was first released Universal Pictures was not above a few theatrics to ramp up the film’s notoriety.  The studio kept an ambulance parked in front of many cinemas, with two nurses in the lobby to raise the fright factor. They also placed an actress in the audience who would, at the scariest moment, scream, jump out of her seat and run out of the theatre. 

While we can’t promise such theatrics for our screening, we do have author John Sutherland with us afterwards for a live Q&A.  Currently an Emeritus Professor of Modern English Literature at UCL, John is also known as a ‘literary detective’.  In his forthcoming book, “Frankenstein’s Brain: Puzzles and Conundrums in Mary Shelley’s Monstrous Masterpiece,” John unearths a trove of tantalising facts and arcane puzzles.  His recherché researches address such as:  Does the monster have a penis?  Is he a monster or a baby – or both?  And, most pertinent to us:  who is the best on-screen Frankenmonster?



Film Information

Date and Time: Friday 29 June, 19:00

Duration: 70 mins

Subtitled: No

Certificate: N/A

Come and discover the newly revealed stories behind the servicemen from Queen’s Park who died in the First World War. A team of local residents has been researching their stories – where they lived in the parish, their family backgrounds, what jobs they did before they went to war whether they were married and had children, where they served, when and where they died and where they are buried or commemorated.

Their moving stories can now be shared for the first time in this exclusive event for Queen’s Park Book Festival. The event will be enriched by selected poetry readings by actors Nick Barber and Alex Blake from the local theatre company Palimpsest.