OOM #5 – The Mummy’s Curse (1944)

It finally ends! The first series of horror films of this year is finished and I can’t wait for the next one. What will it be? Anyway, in the meantime let’s celebrate the ending of the mummy Kharris series (I’ve been spelling that in a different way every day). So, for your pleasure, I got you James Rolfe’s review of the film ‘The Mummy’s Curse’ (1944) that you can see here, and mine that you can read in the next paragraph.

This time the makeup of the mummy is a mess, it’s really subpar when compared ot Pierce’s work in the rest of the films (or even when compared to the rest of the Universal films), supposedly it was Lon Chaney that was way too tired to have to sit in the makeup chair for way too long to make a character that wouldn’t speak and would just stumble around hitting people in the head. It’s also incredible and wasteful to see how the mummy has been diminished in its appeareance in the actual film in behalf of other non-central characters that are never interesting (though the films never were about the mummy, but in the last two he had some nice moments by himself that made him a fully fledged character). In this movie he barely appears, he just appears out of nowhere, after reviving from the swamp in which he was in (25 years later than the last film) to search for the mummy of Princess Ananka, that was buried with him but has been lost.

Maybe the most interesting and worthwhile scene in the entire movie is when Ananka appears from between the mud of the swamp and revives just to see the sunlight, that supposedly gives her the strength to make her a human again. She is being chased by the mummy Kharris and at the same time she seems to call it, as if they were destined to one another, an interesting concept that is never fully taken care of. The movie seems to be a disaster in many ways, from its starting minutes when it all begins with a sing-along number that includes dancing that for a minute seems to take place in other country than the United States (because of the outrageous accents spat out by the people who are watching the musical number), but it’s just that there’s a bunch of workers that come from other parts of the world, there’s even a negro caricature of all the possible awful stereotipes to have! Oh, joy!

The problem is that the film is uneventful and for most of the time is just… dumb. The dialogues are stiff, and there’s the fact that again we have a long flashback that eats up about 10 minutes of the final product that is made of pieces of all the previous films. It gets a bit ridiculous when the mummy goes around trying to catch people or Ananka and it takes quite a deal of effort from him to even manage to do anything. It’s really a sorry state in which we leave this series of films. The movie is still watchable (at times), mainly because it’s 1 hour long, but right now it starts to become more and more tiresome, boring and just uninspired. The originality is over and that sucks.

5/10

One response to “OOM #5 – The Mummy’s Curse (1944)

  1. Definitely one of the weaker films in the mummy franchise, and can’t at all dispute all the serious issues with the film. The mummy make-up is indeed laughable, especially when you envision the work in the Universal series and later with the Hammer re-makes. At the end of the day I’ll agree it’s still watchable, but you are dead-on when you conclude it’s “boring and uninspired.”

    Excellent and engaging review!

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