Young Frankenstein: The Story of the Making of the Film by Mel Brooks & Rebecca Keegan
Reviewed by Mike Kenny
Puttin’ on the ritz for over forty hilarious year, Mel Brooks’ love letter to the Universal monster movies of yesteryear lives on through its well-documented creation in Young Frankenstein: The Story of the Making of the Film. Serving as its scripted shot caller, Brooks warmly recalls his childhood experiences watching the original Frankenstein and being equally terrified by Karloff’s performance and transfixed by James Whale’s gothic direction. From the project’s earliest origins during the making of Blazing Saddles, Brooks discusses the writing process with Co-Writer and Star Gene Wilder before 20th Century Fox’s interest in the property ushered it before cameras. Through Brooks’ own memories and interviews, both new and vintage, with the film’s talented cast and crew, Young Frankenstein: The Story of the Making of the Film covers in-depth the timeless collaboration between Brooks and Wilder, the selection of the film’s many kooky characters, the bittersweet completion of filming and its well-executed marketing campaign. Featuring passages from the screenplay, rare behind-the-scenes photos and an adoring foreword by Writer/Director Judd Apatow (The 40-Year-Old Virgin, Knocked Up), Young Frankenstein: The Story of the Making of the Film wonderfully encapsulates the significance and comedic genius of Brooks’ greatest effort while, also serving as an affectionate tribute to the late and eternally talented Gene Wilder.