Frankenstein stars Colin Clive as Henry Frankenstein, an obsessed scientist who digs up corpses with his assistantin order to assemble a living being from body parts. The resulting creature, often known as Frankenstein's monster, is portrayed by Boris Karloff. The make-up for the monster was provided by Jack Pierce. Alongside Clive and Karloff,the film's cast also includes Mae Clarke, John Boles, Dwight Frye, and Edward Van Sloan.
Produced and distributed by Universal Pictures, the film was a commercial success upon release, and was generally well received by both critics and audiences. It spawned a number of sequels andspin-offs, and has had a significant impact on popular culture: The imagery of a maniacal "mad" scientist with a subservient hunchbacked assistant and the film's depiction of Frankenstein's monster have since become iconic. In 1991,the United States Library of Congress selected Frankenstein for preservation in the National Film Registry as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant.