The Best Boris Karloff Movies

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List of the best Boris Karloff movies, ranked best to worst with movie trailers when available. Boris Karloff's highest grossing movies have received a lot of accolades over the years, earning millions upon millions around the world. The order of these top Boris Karloff movies is decided by how many votes they receive, so only highly rated Boris Karloff movies will be at the top of the list. Boris Karloff has been in a lot of films, so people often debate each other over what the greatest Boris Karloff movie of all time is. If you and a friend are arguing about this then use this list of the most entertaining Boris Karloff films to end the squabble once and for all.

If you think the best Boris Karloff role isn't at the top, then upvote it so it has the chance to become number one. The greatest Boris Karloff performances didn't necessarily come from the best movies, but in most cases they go hand in hand.

The list you're viewing is made up of a variety of different films, including Two Arabian Knights and The Haunted Strangler.

"This list answers the questions, "What are the best Boris Karloff movies?" and "What are the greatest Boris Karloff roles of all time?"

Buster Keaton and John Ford are among those who directed Boris Karloff at one point or another during their careers in the film industry. Movie fans who love Boris Karloff have also been known to enjoy films starring Vincent Price and Lon Chaney, Sr..

Most divisive: Doomed to Die
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  • Frankenstein
    1
    Colin Clive, Mae Clarke, John Boles
    83 votes
    • Released: 1931
    • Directed by: James Whale
    Embarking on a tale of horror and science, Frankenstein is a movie adaptation of Mary Shelley's classic novel. Dr. Victor Frankenstein (Colin Clive) is an ambitious scientist obsessed with the idea of creating life. He builds a creature (Boris Karloff), assembled from exhumed bodies, in his laboratory. However, the creature's grotesque appearance belies its gentle nature - inciting fear and violence in those it encounters. The film, directed by James Whale, won significant acclaim for its groundbreaking makeup and special effects. This chilling narrative explores themes of ambition, responsibility, and the consequences of playing God.

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  • Bride of Frankenstein
    2
    Boris Karloff, Elsa Lanchester, Colin Clive
    90 votes
    • Released: 1935
    • Directed by: James Whale
    Bride of Frankenstein unfolds as a sequel to the original 1931 Frankenstein film. The movie sees Dr. Henry Frankenstein (Colin Clive) once more embroiled in his monstrous pursuits, coerced by his former mentor, Dr. Pretorius (Ernest Thesiger). Their objective is audacious: creating a companion for the Creature (Boris Karloff). As they delve into their grim task, Elsa Lanchester portrays both Mary Shelley and the titular Bride with aplomb. This 1935 horror classic, directed by James Whale, remains a touchstone of the genre, blending gothic dread and tragic pathos with remarkable cinematography and groundbreaking special effects. Notable for its iconic characters and eerie atmosphere, it's a testament to Hollywood's Golden Age of horror.

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  • The Body Snatcher
    3
    Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi, Henry Daniell
    58 votes
    • Released: 1945
    • Directed by: Robert Wise
    Dr. Toddy MacFarlane (Henry Daniell) needs cadavers for his medical experiments, ultimately intended to treat a young disabled girl. However, they are not easy to come by, so he enlists the help of taxi driver John Gray (Boris Karloff) and his assistant, Joseph (Bela Lugosi), to unearth bodies from the cemetery. When Donald (Russell Wade), Dr. MacFarlane's assistant, recognizes one of the corpses Gray delivers, the true source of the bodies is called into question.

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  • The Black Cat
    4
    Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi, David Manners
    47 votes
    • Released: 1934
    • Directed by: Edgar G. Ulmer
    Not to be confused with the 1941 version also featuring Bela Lugosi. The Black Cat is a 1934 horror film that became Universal Pictures' biggest box office hit of the year. The picture was the first of eight movies to pair actors Béla Lugosi and Boris Karloff. Edgar G. Ulmer directed the film, which was also notable for being one of the first movies with an almost continuous music score. Lugosi also appears in a 1941 film with the same title.
  • The Mummy
    5
    Boris Karloff, Zita Johann, David Manners
    63 votes
    • Released: 1932
    • Directed by: Karl Freund
    A team of British archaeologists led by Sir Joseph Whemple (Arthur Byron) discover the mummified remains of the ancient Egyptian prince Imhotep (Boris Karloff), along with the legendary scroll of Thoth. When one of the archaeologists recites the scroll aloud, Imhotep returns to life, but escapes. Several years later, Imhotep has taken on the guise of a wealthy man, as he searches Egypt for his lost love, who he believes has been reincarnated as the lovely Helen Grosvenor (Zita Johann).

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  • Son of Frankenstein
    6
    Basil Rathbone, Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi
    46 votes
    • Released: 1939
    • Directed by: Rowland V. Lee
    Baron Wolf von Frankenstein (Basil Rathbone) is determined to prove the legitimacy of his father's scientific work, thus rescuing the family name from disgrace. With the help of Ygor (Bela Lugosi), a grave robber, Wolf successfully reanimates the monster (Boris Karloff) his father originally brought back from the dead. But when several villagers are killed mysteriously, Wolf must find the culprit in order to vindicate his creation, or face the possibility that he may be responsible.

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