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The Mummy  [DVD]
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During a 1921 archaeological dig, the expedition members discover a sarcophagus in an unmarked grave. It in fact contains the mummy of priest Im-Ho-Tep (Boris Karloff), who was buried alive 3,700 years ago as a punishment for attempting to bring a vestal virgin he loved back to life. Returned to life, Tep adopts the garb of a modern Egyptian and goes in search of his former love, echoes of whose physical form he finds in expedition member Helen Grosvenor (Zita Johann).
You have to hand it to the walking dead. What they lack in speed and agility, they more than make up for in sheer single-minded determination. Im-Ho-Tep is a case in point. He's an ancient Egyptian priest, cursed for his terrible crimes against the gods. A team of British archaeologists digs up his sarcophagus, along with a box inscribed with a warning that opening it will unleash death and destruction. You'll never guess what they do. Once freed, Im-Ho-Tep takes on the appropriately evil alias Ardath Bey and gets to the task of resurrecting his ancient lover--which will, of course, require a living human surrogate. While the premise may sound formulaic, The Mummy in fact turns out to be bracingly weird, relying on atmospheric creepiness rather than on jump-out-and-scare-you effects. Boris Karloff gives a terrific performance as Im-Ho-Tep. He has all the malevolence the film requires, but also manages subtler touches; the expression in his eyes as he is wrapped in preparation for being buried alive is absolutely chilling. Instead of forcing him to do all the tedious shambling around that so many mummies resort to, the filmmakers have wisely given Im-Ho-Tep/Ardath Bey a nearly living appearance once he's cleaned up and has a few psychic powers to boot, making him a potent adversary. Stock up on ace bandages and prepare for a good spooky evening. --Ali DavisSee all Product Description
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The film is the classic of its genre (i.e. the mummy films) and has spawned endless re-makes. Although not for the horror movie fan who enjoys gore and terror from a film, it is a great film for anyone who enjoys classic movies, and the more subtle horror films.
The DVD includes some decent extras. A commentry track by film historian Paul M. Jensen provides a highly detailed look into the film making techniques used by the film makers.
There is also a documentary called Mummy Dearest that provides some interesting background detail about the film, and why it was made. It also includes clips from the many sequels produced to The Mummy and some rare stills from deleted scenes.
Finally there is a rather good trailer included.
All in all, a great vehicle for a true classic film.
Having made the first Frankenstein film only the year before (1931) - at which time he appeared halfway down the cast list simply as "?" - by the time he came to make "The Mummy" he had been promoted to the spot ABOVE the title, as "Karloff the Uncanny". (This would have been less memorable had it not been for the fact that Karloff was actually an Englishman, and his real name was William Pratt. A number of genuine emigres from Eastern Europe were working in Hollywood at this time, and it was quite usual for them to be credited without any forename.)
As to the film itself, it is important to remember that it was made at a time when TV didn't exist, and a car chase at 60 mph was hot stuff. Though the pace may seem slow by today's standards, in its time it was a magnificent example of mounting suspense. Indeed, considering that it has a running time of only an hour and ten minutes, it actually contains a lot more plot development and characterisation than the average one hour TV programme.
I'm not going to go over the plot here, previous reviewers have already done that justice. I would, however, congratulate Universal on the excellent package of "bonus" material which makes the DVD so attractive even if you already have the film on tape.
There is the almost obligatory sets of stills and posters, plus the original trailer.Read more ›
There is no news of Imhotep for years, and Dr. Whemple returns home vowing never to return or to speak of what he knows.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Lots of extras such as trailer is got a 3-D version of this movie cover of this Blu-ray looks excellentPublished 3 days ago by paul block
The Mummy is directed by Karl Freund and written by Nina Wilcox Putnam, Richard Schayer and John L. Balderston. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Spike Owen
A team of British archaeologists on an expedition in Egypt uncover the tomb of Im Ho Tep, an Egyptian priest and he comes to life. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Mr. R. W. Graham
Back in the 1980s I replaced most of my collection of 8mm movies with VHS and I have been going through a same process of upgrading to DVD for the last few years. Read morePublished 4 months ago by BlackBrigand
One of the best films Hollywood has ever made. A true classic.Published 7 months ago by nightseeker
A classic horror film. The blu ray restoration breathes new life into this old picture, levels of detail are fantastic and sound is very clear. Read morePublished 7 months ago by L.W