The Mummy

Production year: 1959

Horror PG   Running time: 1:28

IMDB rating:   6.8     Aspect: Wide;  Languages: English, French;  Subtitles: English, French;  Audio: Mono

Hammer Studios' greatest nemeses, Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee, once again square off in this reworking of Universal's The Mummy (with elements of The Mummy's Tomb and The Mummy's Ghost thrown in for good measure). Cushing stars as archeologist John Banning, whose dig for a lost tomb results in untold treasures but leaves his father a mumbling madman and marks the rest of the company for death. Lee is Kharis, a former high priest turned gauze-wrapped guardian of the tomb, a veritable Golem sent on a mission of vengeance by Mehemet Bey (George Pastell), a disciple of the ancient Egyptian god Osiris. The scenes at the archeological dig and the flashbacks to the ancient burial are stagebound and cheap looking, but Terence Fisher is back in familiar territory when the action relocates to the misty swamps and Victorian mansions of rural England. The towering, 6-foot-3-inch-tall Lee makes the most terrifying mummy to date. He covers ground in giant strides, smashes his way into rooms with heavy Frankensteinlike swipes of his arm, and takes shotgun blasts with barely a twitch--yet he melts from rage to calm at the sight of Banning's wife, Isobel (Yvonne Furneaux), a dead ringer for his dead Queen. The film is still most famous for it's tongue-removal scene, discreetly hidden from the camera but nevertheless shiver inducing.

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The Mummy