The Mummy (1959)

The Mummy
Directed by Terence Fisher
Written by Jimmy Sangster
Hammer Films
First viewing/Netflix rental


John Banning: Seems I’ve spent the better part of my life amongst the dead.

This time Hammer tackles the Mummy franchise.

This contains some key elements of 1932’s Universal classic The Mummy, mainly the great love of the ancient priest Kharis (Christopher Lee) for the Princess Ananka and his punishment by burial alive.

The main setting is moved to 1920’s England.  An Egyptian devoted to the cult of Karnack, of which Ananka was spiritual leader, takes Kharis’s mummy on the road to avenge the desecration of the Princess’s tomb.  He is successful with the elder members of the team but the youngest member of the party, John Banning (Peter Cushing), is a tougher nut to crack.  Banning just happens to be married to a Princess Ananka lookalike.

This is not the strongest or most memorable entry in Hammer’s catalogue but it is atmospheric and entertaining nonetheless.


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