The Bronx is one of the birthplaces of hip-hop, but from 1894 to 1918 the Bronx was home to Thomas Edison's production company, Edison Studios. Most of the 1,200 films created there were shorts, including this 1910 film based on Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. Although the tale of a creature born from a scientist's lab is generally associated with the horror genre, Wikipedia tells us that Edison's version of the story purposefully strayed from that formula in order to focus on "the mystic and psychological problems." At the time of making the silent work, Edison was catering to outside pressure to conform to a stricter, moralistic standard. The distributor described Frankenstein as follows:
"To those familiar with Mrs. Shelly’s story it will be evident that we have carefully omitted anything which might be any possibility shock any portion of the audience. In making the film the Edison Co. has carefully tried to eliminate all actual repulsive situations and to concentrate its endeavors upon the mystic and psychological problems that are to be found in this weird tale. Wherever, therefore, the film differs from the original story it is purely with the idea of eliminating what would be repulsive to a moving picture audience."
Watch the 16-minute movie and see what differences you spot compared to the original novel. [Via Archive.org]
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