Young Frankenstein

  • Review Date: October 16, 2005
  • Rated: PG
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Release Year: 1974
  • Running Time: 105 minutes

Common Sense Media says

Brooks' corniness yields plenty of belly laughs.
  • Review Date: October 16, 2005
  • Rated: PG
  • Genre: Comedy
  • Release Year: 1974
  • Running Time: 105 minutes

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Though an obvious parody of the horror genre the film presents a much happier ending than Shelley's original tale. The monster is accepted by the villagers, the Dr. finally admits his heritage and everyone lives happily ever after.

Positive role models

Characters are stereotyped exaggerations.

Violence
Not applicable
Sex

Bawdy humor and sexual innuendo, including a scene at the end that suggests Madeline Kahn's character has slept with the monster. Plus a few racy jokes: Frederick says "What great knockers" to Teri Garr's character, supposedly referring to the door's knockers.

Language

A few comically hurled curses.

Consumerism
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that kids will hear a lot of bawdy humor and sexual innuendo, including a scene at the end that suggests Madeline Kahn's character has slept with the monster. Frederick says "What great knockers" to Teri Garr's character, supposedly referring to the door's knockers.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

After denouncing his grandfather's work as "doo doo," Dr. Frederick Frankenstein (Gene Wilder) receives word that he's inherited his famous ancestor's Transylvanian castle. There, with the help of his lab assistant Inga (Teri Garr) and pop-eyed hunchback Igor (Marty Feldman), he discovers a secret library containing his grandfather Victor's notes on how to bring the dead to life. The temptation is too great to pass up. In the renowned Frankenstein laboratory, young Frederick creates his own monster (Peter Boyle) and harnesses the power of an electrical storm to bring him to life.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Mel Brooks fans will rejoice at the re-release of one of his funniest films. Sure the gags are lame, and the script is almost infantile, but if you thought YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN was funny in 1974, you're just as likely to get a kick out of it today. There's an unembarrassed corniness about the movie that generates plenty of belly laughs. The monster's "Puttin' on the Ritz" number will even squeeze smiles out of those not inclined towards Brooks' brand of humor.

The vaguely smutty jokes and sight gags will go over well with the teen crowd, but the comic talents at work here will appeal to all ages. Marty Feldman, Teri Garr, Madeline Kahn, Cloris Leachman, and Gene Hackman comprise a comedy's dream cast. Peter Boyle brings an unexpected touch of dignity to the monster, and Gene Wilder is as charming and manic as he was in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about parody. Is this film seemingly patterned after old horror films? How does it differ? Beneath the obvious ridiculing of old horror films, do you detect any sort of fondness for the genre?

  • Why was the monster originally rejected by the town's people?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:December 15, 1974
DVD release date:September 5, 2006
Cast:Gene Wilder, Madeline Kahn, Marty Feldman, Peter Boyle
Director:Mel Brooks
Studio:Twentieth Century Fox
Genre:Comedy
Topics:Misfits and underdogs, Monsters, ghosts, and vampires
Run time:105 minutes
MPAA rating:PG
MPAA explanation:parental guidance suggested

This review of Young Frankenstein was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

Find out more

Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

About our buy links

When you use our links to make a purchase, Common Sense Media earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes. As a nonprofit organization, these funds help us continue providing independent, ad-free services for educators, families, and kids while the price you pay remains the same. Thank you for your support.
Read more

See more about how we rate and review.

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Adult Written bybeebizzy April 9, 2008
AGENot rated for age
QUALITY
 

Very Surprised!

I know I saw this movie years ago when I was a teenager but I didn't recall this much sex being thrown around. I was looking forward to watching an old funny movie. I was very surprised and disapoointed. The review I checked on was "soft" in it's descriptions. Even if it is done in play it is still too much. Madaline howls like a dog when it shows her looking down at his private parts as he is undoing his pants and then lays down on her and she sings out in joy. Then it shortly shows the two of them smoking, apparntly having had sex and then going at it again for the 7th time!? There is more of this through out the movie, too much and it just spoils it. It's just not a movie that a family would enjoy.
Parent Written byKMM5 August 1, 2013
AGE
10
QUALITY
 

Better than ABC Family!

Ok.... so there is language, sex, and smoking..... BUT..... no more smoking than any old movie, the only language I remembe is GD and the S word (each just a few times), and the sex is alluded to in jokes that mostly go over the kids' heads. All in all, it's more mild than anything on ABC Family, so if your kids watch that channel I would choose this movie before any of those TV shows. My 10 year old watched it and loved it. There was one joke that she didn't get and said she didn't know why others were laughing (she was the only kid in the room and it was a penis joke), but when I told her it was a grown up joke she dropped it. Everything else either went over her head or she was old enough to understand and process the information. There are three scenes to be aware of. The first is a scene where the housekeeper is looking for the doctor (Gene Wilder's character) and she comes down to the laboratory to find him laying with his lab assistant and covered with a blanket. Everything but their shoulders is covered, but young children may as you what they are doing. My 10 year old knew what they were doing, but because I have been proactive with conversations with her she knew it was wrong. The second scene is when the monster takes a woman from the house and takes her into the wilderness to romance her. The scene is very funny, but it does involve sex (although it shows nothing and there is no nudity). Afterwords I realized that the scene was a little rapey, but only after thinking about it more than I probably should. It's actually a very funny scene and it's clear that, at least by the time they actually have sex, the female character is on board and a willing participant. My daughter mentioned nothing of this scene after the movie was over - I don't think she even remembered that it happened. The last scene to be aware of is the final scene in the movie. There is a vague penis size joke, then some "sex noises," then the movie ends. Again, my daughter was old enough to understand what was happening here. If your kids are 10 and you don't think they know what's going on in those scenes you're wrong - they do - and you need to have a conversation even though it's uncomfortable. If you don't have the conversation a teenage boy will have it for you. Anyway, my daughter did mention that she wishes they hadn't ended the movie that way. If you'd rather have a nicer ending for your children, just stop the movie after it shows both couples at the end. Your child won't miss any vital information and will have a better "happily ever after" type of ending. All in all it was a great movie and my daughter loved it. She asked no questions after it was over (just the one question during the movie). It probably helped that we have been pretty proactive with converastions about puberty, sex, and growing up, but again this movie is more PG than anything on ABC family and has less cursing than primetime television.
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Adult Written byMovieLover4Lyfe June 2, 2010
AGE
8
QUALITY
 
Very funny movie! Teenagers today might find it mundane, but children will love the silly characters!

Poll

Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?

Essential School Tools