31 Days of Halloween-Day 18: Curse of the Mummy’s Tomb (1964)

Unlike their Frankenstein and Dracula series, Hammer never really seemed to embrace the Mummy movies. It started off very promising with 1959’s The Mummy, which featured Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee. However, the three films that followed were all unrelated and lacked the star power of Cushing or Lee. Therefore, they’ve always held a second-rate status amongst Hammer horror fans. The first of the three follow-up films was The Curse of the Mummy’s Tomb in 1964. The plot is standard mummy movie madness, as Egyptologists bring artifacts back to London. This leads to the revival of the mummy and the subsequent deaths of the expedition members. Terence Morgan plays Adam Beauchamp, our resident bad guy who is up to no good. His career was a short one with no other real highlights. Our female lead is Jeanne Roland playing Annette Dubois, daughter of the Egyptologist who is killed in the opening segment. This was her first film and she suffered the fate of the infamous Hammer dubbing. Her career was also a short one, highlighted only by small roles in the James Bond movies Casino Royale (okay, fake Bond) and You Only Live Twice. Finally, we have Ronald Howard as John Bray. At least Howard had a more impressive career that is highlighted by his starring role in the 1954 television version of Sherlock Holmes. We also get our favorite Hammer character actor Michael Ripper in the role of servant Achmed. However, most of the cast were not Hammer regulars, which hurts the movie from even having a familiar feel to it. Director Michael Carrerras does have other Hammer films to his credit, with this probably being the biggest. However, his long list of producer credits is far more impressive. The movie is a disappointing sequel and set the stage for two more lackluster sequels (The Mummy’s Shroud in ’69 and Blood from the Mummy’s Tomb in 1971). While I think these movies are more atmospheric than the Universal Horror Mummy sequels, they lack the charm and fun. It is currently available as part of the Icons of Horror Collection: Hammer Films DVD set with three other Hammer classics for less than $20, making it worth your time and money. Nothing original or outstanding, just go into it with lower expectations and you’ll enjoy it more.

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