Director: Michael Carreras
Writer: Henry Younger
Cast: Terence Morgan, Ronald Howard, Fred Clark, Jeanne Roland, George Pastell, Jack Gwillim, John Paul, Dickie Owen, Jill Mai Meredith, Michael Ripper, Harold Goodwin, Jimmy Gardner, Vernon Smythe, and Marianne Stone
Composer: Carlo Martelli
Release Date: 10/18/1964
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Financed by an entrepreneur named Alexander King (Fred Clark), British archaeologists John Bray (Ronald Howard), Sir Giles Dalrymple (Jack Gwillim), and Professor Eugene Dubois discover the tomb of Ra-Antef (Dickie Owen)—a mummified Egyptian prince—and transport the sarcophagus to England. Seeking revenge on those responsible for the desecration of his burial site, the Mummy returns to life and goes on a killing rampage—with dire consequences for Dubois’ daughter Annette (Jeanne Roland), now enamored of a mysterious figure known as Adam Beauchamp (Terence Morgan).
The Curse of the Mummy’s Tomb is a dull and plodding entry in Hammer’s lineup of horror offerings. Specifically problematic are the film’s languid pacing and copious exposition, which may prevent the viewer from engaging with the main characters.
Forgoing the creepy and suspenseful atmosphere of The Mummy (1959), this film may fail to intrigue fans of the Gothic horror genre. The Curse of the Mummy’s Tomb does, however, benefit from topnotch acting, cinematography, and Egyptian set pieces, which add an air of realism to the concept of an ancient, decrepit mummy returning to life and stalking the streets of London.
Though supposedly an expert showman with a flair for the dramatic, Alexander King never presents himself as an eccentric or interesting person, instead relying on constant blather and groan-worthy humor when selling himself to others.
Also unlikable is the character of Annette Dubois, who prepares to leave her fiancée John Bray—a decent and dedicated man—to be with Adam Beauchamp, a sketchy individual with an ominous connection to the Mummy.
In addition to its unsympathetic main characters, this film is marred by a lack of action, tension, and excitement prior to the final act—at which point the Mummy finally comes to life before perishing in an anticlimactic manner.
Having no relation to The Mummy films with Boris Karloff, Lon Chaney Jr., and Christopher Lee, The Curse of the Mummy’s Tomb offers an original but uninspired twist on its narrative premise. All but diehard Hammer buffs will therefore wish to avoid this effort, which, in spite of its outstanding production values, suffers from a tedious execution.
Overall Quality: 5/10
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