The greatest Mummy movie ever made. Full of atmosphere and suspense.
I love the classic horror movies of the 1930s. They were made when the talkies were still novel and film makers were experimenting with storytelling approaches, often taking inspirations from German Expressionism (indeed 'The Mummy's director Karl Freund, who later directed another 1930s classic 'Mad Love', originally worked as a cinematographer on Fritz Lang's science fiction classic 'Metropolis' and several movies by F.W. Murnau). And it was before the Hayes Code kicked in and took a lot of the fun and thrills out of horror movies (just look at how safe and uninteresting horror became in the 1940s with a few notable exceptions e.g. the movies produced by Val Lewton). The film obviously owes a lot to 'Dracula' and Edward Van Sloan and David Manners from that film reappear here in similar roles. Karloff is brilliant as Imhotep a.k.a The Mummy, and stage actress Zita Johann is wonderful too, very striking with exotic good looks. Too bad she became very quickly disillusioned with Hollywood as she should have been a major screen star. Karloff and Johann are fantastic on screen together, and make 'The Mummy' impossible to forget. I was quite surprised to discover that this movie wasn't enormously successful when originally released, but it has obviously captured the imagination of thousands of film fans since. It is easily the best Mummy movie ever made (though I also have a fondness for Hammer's "Blood From The Mummy's Tomb' made almost forty years later), and much more entertaining and intelligent than the awful remake starring Brendan Fraser et al. 'The Mummy' stands alongside 'Dracula', 'Frankenstein', 'Island Of Lost Souls', 'Freaks', 'The Invisible Man' and 'The Black Cat' as one of the best horror movies of the 1930s, an era that has had an enormous impact on horror ever since. Highly recommended!
- Aug 11, 2003
Contribute to this page
Suggest an edit or add missing content