Destroy All Monsters: “Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein” and “Freddy vs. Jason”

words by Kevin Munley
| Wednesday, April 25th, 2012

While Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein (1948) takes iconic horror characters from the classic Universal movie catalogue (Dracula, Frankenstein’s monster, and the Wolf Man) and Freddy vs. Jason (2003) incorporates two of the most famous monsters from ‘80s slasher films (Freddy Krueger and Jason Voorhees), both films do a great job criss-crossing the unique mythologies of each character in these entertaining intra-genre mash-ups. Regardless of the hokey plot of Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein, you get to see Bela Legosi’s Dracula and Lon Chaney’s Wolf Man in the same film from the perspective of tubby buffoon, Lou Costello.

Here is the scene where Dracula revives Frankenstein in front of a hypnotized Costello:

Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein shows the more pathological and weaker monster, Dracula, trying to manipulate an almost mindless physical force, Frankenstein. Similarly, in Freddy vs. Jason, the children have forgotten about Freddy Krueger’s dream spree, and the only way to make them remember is for him to send goalie-face to Elm Street to mutilate some teenagers. Luckily, this isn’t too far outside of the box for Jason.

Both movies question what is really scary: the psychotic, sociopathic mind, or just simple, overpowering, brute strength? Here is the trailer of Freddy vs. Jason:

Both films comes to their climatic ends pitting monster against monster, while the pudgy or busty human characters fight to survive the ordeal. Strangely enough, both films involve lighting a pier on fire, as seen in the final fight scene of Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein:

I guess when you are dealing with a gaggle of indestructible villains, it is hard for any screenwriter to write a satisfying death sequence to dispose of multiple monsters at the same time. Thankfully, there is hope: write the monsters onto a pier and then have the human protagonists light it on fire. That will show you, evil incarnate!

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