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The Mummy
Die Rache der Pharaonen

UK 1959
produced by
Michael Carreras for Hammer
directed by Terence Fisher
starring Peter Cushing, Christopher Lee, Yvonne Furneaux, Eddie Byrne, Felix Aylmer, Raymond Huntley, George Pastell, Michael Ripper, George Woodbridge, Harold Goodwin, Denis Shaw, Gerald Lawson, Willoughby Gray, John Stuart
screenplay by Jimmy Sangster, music by Franz Reizenstein, conducted by John Hollingsworth

Hammer's Mummy series

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Egypt 1895: Stephen Banning (Felix Aylmer), his son John (Peter Cushing) & John's uncle Joseph (Raymnd Huntley) find the fabled tomb of Egyptian princess Ananka, & in it the equally fabled scroll of life. But when Stephen is left alone in the tomb for a few minutes, he goes mad, & the scroll (as well as a few other relics) are gone.

3 years later, England: Stephen had been in a mental asylum for the last 3 years in total oblivion of anything that might have happened in Egypt, or indeed of everything else, when all of a sudden he wants to see his son ... & tries to persuade the boy that he is menaced by something they had dug up in Egypt, but remains rather vague about wht that might be. Everyone dismisses Stephen's ideas as paranoia, ignorant of course to the fact that that same day, local sinister Egyptian Mehmet Akir (George Pastell) has delivered a mummy (Christopher Lee) from Ananka's tomb to his place, & with the scroll of life, he is able to revive that mummy & send it out to avenge itself on those who desecrated his tomb ... so the next day, Stephen is found, brutally murdered ...

John & uncle Joe try to make heads & tails of this story, & in their investigation stumble over the legend of Ananka (played by Yvonne Furneaux in the flashbacks) & her highpriest Kharis (Christopher Lee) who had an illicit affair with her, & after her death tried to revive her with the scroll of life ... but was caught, brutally tortured, bandaged like a mummy, & buried alive to watch over Ananka's dead body ...

No sooner have they told the storya to each other does the mummy enter & kill Uncle Joe, before John's very eyes ...

John is next on the list, & right the next evening, the mummy comes for him, but is stopped by John's wife Isobel, who bears a striking resemblance to Ananka (& is thus also played by Yvonne Furneaux), which is why the mummy listens to her command.

The next day, John - having against all odds convinced police inspector Mulrooney (Eddie Byrne) of his crazy mummy story - agrees to act as a decoy for the police to catch the mummy, but the plan almost fails when Mehmet Akir has taken some precautions against the police himself, & soon again,t he mummy is at John's throat, when again in comes Isobel & stops the mummy ... but when Mehmet Akir tries to silence Isobel, he earns the wrath of his own mummy & is killed by it.

The mummy then takes Isobel to his watery grave in the swamps, but Isobel persuades the mummy to let her down before its body is perforated by the bullets of the police ...

 

After the runaway success of both Curse of Frankenstein (1957) & Dracula  (1958), it seemed only logical for Hammer to make a film about the Mummy, preferably directed Terence Fisher & starring Peter Cushing & Christopher Lee. As a whole, The Mummy is the least successful of the three, both on a commercial and an artistical level, which is not to say it is a bad movie, it's a rather slow-moving mood-piece relying more on dialogue & less on action than it's predecessors. But the acting is atgain outstanding, as is the use of colour (which would be the rule for Hammer's early colour Gothics), & director Terence Fisher definitely knew how to create a creepy atmosphere.

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Thanks for watching !!!

 

 

Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
Amazon!!!

 

 

 

On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD