In many ways, Bride of Frankenstein set the standard for just about every trope in horror sequels. From the darker approach to the quirkier, more comedic sequel, Bride really did it all. The most obvious approach, though, would be the sequels that actually depict their monsters getting married.
It’s a relatively niche subgenre, if it can even be called that. But there’s something so ridiculous about the premise that, even when it shouldn’t work, it actually kind of does. While Bride of Frankenstein manages to really explore the concept, it’s hard for other sequels to really try and convey a sense of seriousness.
With movies like this, the weirder, the funnier, the better. “Bride of…” is an inherently ridiculous concept. It’s an idea that begs for a comedic approach.
Considering that Bride of Frankenstein created this whole type of sequel, it plays more of a grandfather role to the films on the list and therefore can’t be counted as part of the list itself. I doubt anyone would argue its place as the best “Bride” sequel in all of horror.
Originally titled Bride of Leprechaun, Leprechaun 2 is indeed about the Leprechaun trying to claim a bride. It’s not exactly consensual, though. He’s waiting for a woman to sneeze three times without anyone saying “God bless you,” and that’s about it as far as the premise goes. But, this also has the benefit of being the funniest and most well made Leprechaun sequel, helmed by Rodman Flender who would later go on to do Idle Hands.
Okay, this might be stretching it, but there is a monster wedding even if it comes at the very end. But the whole movie is a cartoonish satire, so the whole thing is designed as a feature where a Gremlin wedding actually makes sense and is not even remotely surprising when it finally happens. It’s literally just a punch-line to a joke made about halfway through.
Return of the Living Dead 3
It’s not actually about finding a bride, but it’s a very romantic sequel with a plot that inherently revolves around challenging the whole concept of “till death do us part.” As I’ve made clear at this point, it’s one of my favorite sequels in general. I just love it, from the visual style to the performances down to the amazing, grotesque FX work.
The Brides of Dracula
One of the very best sequels from Hammer Films, and the best sequel of the Dracula franchise, if it even really counts as one. This is really, more than anything else, a spinoff film for Peter Cushing’s Van Helsing. As such, it’s fantastic. He really gets to shine in this role just as much as he did in Horror of Dracula. There’s a great moment where he gets bitten and cauterizes the wound.
Bride of Re-Animator
Admittedly, I never realized how many people just absolutely hate this sequel until recently. But I think there’s a lot to like about Bride, from the weird monsters made of body parts, to Hill’s head flying around with bat wings, to Kathleen Kinmont as the bride herself. My favorite thing about the sequel is the way that the creation of the bride drives a wedge between Herbert and Dan, which is I think the heart of the movie.
Bride of Chucky
Outside of The Bride of Frankenstein, which is one of the best horror films in general, Bride of Chucky is the best “bride” sequel we’ve ever gotten. I know that some people think it’s the stupidest thing ever created, and that’s fine. But I think there really is something to this movie. I think it’s smart, it’s genuinely funny and so, so stylish. It looks and sounds great, but also takes a Natural Born Killers bent in being a road move about a killer couple with a heavy focus on the way the media would report on crime sprees in the ‘’90s. But it’s fun as hell.