Eternal Punishment for Anyone Who Opens This Casket: The Mummy (1932)

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“Eternal punishment… for… anyone… who… opens… this… casket. In the name… of Amon-Ra… the king of the gods.”

I LOVE this film!!!! It is a classic horror/B film that stars the amazing, wonderful, absolutely fabulous Boris Karloff! That man was a genius and can do creepy so well. Just check out FrankensteinAnyway The Mummy is a member of Universal’s Classic Horror collection; a collection that also houses The Phantom of the Opera, Frankenstein,  The Bride of FrankensteinDracula, The Creature from the Black Lagoon, The Wolf Man, etc.

I love this movie so much that last year I made my own poster for my cover page on facebook. Here it is, hope you like it.

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So The Mummy has become such a huge part of our culture. It has been in so many other films and TV series; such as Scooby-Doo and the Ghoul SchoolScooby-Doo and the Reluctant WerewolfGet Smart: The MummyLaverne & Shirley: The Mummy’s BrideTransylvania 6-5000DuckTales: Ducky Horror Picture ShowSupernatural: Monster Movie, Frankenweenie, etc

It also has had countless remakes such as The Mummy’s Hand (1940), The Mummy’s Tomb (1942), The Mummy’s Ghost(1944),  The Mummy’s Curse (1944),  Abbott and Costello Meet the Mummy, The Mummy (1959), The Curse of the Mummy’s Tomb (1964), The Mummy’s Shroud (1966),  Blood from the Mummy’s Tomb (1971), The Mummy’s Revenge (1973), The Mummy Lives (1993),  The Mummy (1999), The Mummy Returns (2001)The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor (2008), and the animated series The Mummy

What’s funny is that The Mummy started out as something completely different. It was originally going to be called “Cagliostro“, based on a “prophet”/charlatan who claimed that he had lived for several centuries. It was changed with the discovery of King Tut‘s tomb and the controversy over “his curse”.  It is the only one of the Universal Classic Horror Collection that is not based off of legend, myth, or classical fiction; but was created all on its own. Interestingly enough, this film is very similar to Dracula, as the writers and directors who worked on that worked on this as well.

Previous to Frankenstein Karloff was unknown, but by this time Karloff was such a huge name that all they had to do was advertise “KARLOFF is THE MUMMY!”

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So the film begins with Sir Joseph Wemple leading an archeological expedition in Egypt. He and his crew strike it rich finding a mummy and all his belongings.

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However, this mummy, has a curse placed upon him.

“Sir Joseph Whemple: [translating inscription on box] “Death… eternal punishment… for… anyone… who… opens… this… casket. In the name… of Amon-Ra… the king of the gods.” Good heavens, what a terrible curse!”

Not only that but

“Doctor Muller: Look – the sacred spells which protect the soul in its journey to the underworld have been chipped off the coffin. So Imhotep was sentenced to death not only in this world, but in the next.”

Sir Joseph’s best friend, Doctor Muller, warns him to stay away from the mummy, that only bad things will come of it, but Sir Joseph can’t, he just has to continue to examine the body all in the name of science. Doctor Muller is very much a Van Helsing type character, expressed more so as the film continues.

Sir Joseph manages to find the scroll of Thoth that brings the dead back to life, and his assistant, Ralph Norton, can’t help but read it.

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He reads it in front of the Mummy and brings him to life!!!!!

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Isn’t Karloff gruesome? What a great costume!

I can’t really blame Norton, as I would do the same thing if I could see Boris Karloff. 😀

This is so me.

This is so me.

We are then fast-forwarded ten years to the present, 1932. Sir Joseph’s son is also an archeologist, but unfortunately his digging crew has come up with nothing so far. Frank Whemple, Sir Joseph’s son, is the only Whemple left in Egypt, as after his father discovered his crazed assistant, Sir Joseph packed up and returned to England, determined to never come to Egypt again. Frank is about to follow his father when he is approached by a modern Egyptian Aderth Bay [they used this name for the leader of the Maji in The Mummy (1999)]. 

Look familiar?

Look familiar?

Yep Ardeth Bay is really the Mummy. He gives Frank a map to finding a site “greater than Tutankhamun’s”, his reasons for sharing being that Egyptians are not allowed to dig up their own land but can only do it through foriegners.

Karloff’s makeup was based on the appearance of Ramses III; and had to go through eight hours of makeup application. Karloff speaks in a stilted voice that only adds to his mummy persona, but this was due to the fact that so many layers of cotton were glued to his face to create the wrinkled skin that Karloff was unable to move his facial muscles enough even to speak.

Even though I am referring him to as the Mummy, his real name is Imhotep. Imhotep is the high priest and they named him after the orginal high priest who designed the stepped pryamid of Djoser in 2630–2611 BCE, the first pryamid ever created in ancient times. That Imhotep wasn’t sentenced cruely but actually so honored he was declared a god.

Anyways, back to the film. They dig and find the remains of Ankh-es-en-Amon, the princess.

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Later Frank attends a ball in which he spots the beautiful Helen Grosvenor, played by Zita Johann.

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Helen is biracial, her mother was Egyptian while her father was British (the Evie character in the 1999 version). Her father is in charge of the Sudan, but Helen didn’t want to go and is staying with Dr. Muller. She is very nostalgic and easily lost in  the mystery and mysticism of ancient Egypt.

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Imhotep prepare a ceremony t0 help him discover who his beloved Ankh-es-en-Amon’s reincarnated body is. You see back in the day, Imhotep was mummified after trying to resurrect his forbidden lover, the princess Ankh-es-en-Amon. Ever since he was revived he has been trying to find ways to bring her back. But first he needs her reincarnated form as they are “linked” to put Ankh-es-en-Amon’s full spirit in.

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This reincarnated body is Helen Grosvenor who looks just like Ankh-es-en-Amon.

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Imhotep calls to her, and she answers. In a zombie like trance she gets a cab and goes to the museum. She tries to get in, but it is locked for the night. Frank finds her and tries to figure out how to help her when she faints. Frank picks her up and takes her to Dr. Muller’s.

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Helen wakes up and her and Frank form an Insta-connection. While they are busy oogling each other, Sir Joseph and Dr. Muller are trying to figure out how Ardeth Bay, Imhotep, and Helen are all connected. They also hear of a murder at the museum (Ardeth Bay killed a guard who discovered him) and find the remains of his ceremony.

Hmm...

Hmm…

Sir Joseph and Dr. Muller return and have connected all the dots. They try to bring Frank up to speed but he just thinks they are talking crazy.  Imhotep shows up as he knows that they hold his scroll needed for the ritual. When he arrives he finds Helen. He tries to remind her “who she is”, but she doesn’t remember. She does however have a bond with him, one she cannot explain. Dr. Muller tries to get her out of there, but she doesn’t want to go. However, Frank is able to convince her.

They too hold a bond

They too hold a bond

Dr. Muller, Sir Joseph, and Imhotep all have a confrontation, everyone letting each other know that they know who each is. They tell Imhotep that they are going to burn the scroll of Thoth that brings people back from the dead. Imhotep warns them to return the scroll to him or die.

Gilmore girls creep

That night Imhotep uses his magical pool to see Sir Joseph trying to burn the scroll.

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He doesn’t like that one bit and sends Sir Joe a heart attack. He then commands the servant, as he has the power to command all those with Egyptian blood, to burn some other paper and bring him the scroll.

The next day Dr. Miller gives Frank an Isis charm that will protect him. But he warns him not to give the charm to ANYONE ELSE IT WON’T WORK FOR ANYONE ELSE!

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That day Imhotep calls to Helen and she goes to him. He shows her the past in his wishing pool.

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He was punished for messing with fate that wasn’t his to mess with.

When Helen goes home, Frank is there waiting having been extremely worried about her. Helen goes through a range of emotions as her two sides are fighting with each other. Dr. Muller puts her under house arrest/house care. She acts very much like Mina after Dracula has bit her.

They keep looking for Imhotep but can’t find him. They ask Helen to answer the next time he calls so they can find him and kill him.

Frank waits outside Helen’s door and decides to help her by placing his Isis charm around the doorknob to keep Imhotep out.

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DID YOU NOT HEAR THE MAN EARLIER?

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HE SAID IT WILL WORK ONLY FOR YOU! YOU KEEP IT! I mean this is such a classic mistake made by these men in these horror films. In Dracula, he just has to give the girl the cross charm that is supposed to protect only him, and then gets knocked out and is unable to keep her from being kidnapped. In The Wolf Man, he gives the girl the charm to protect him, and it doesn’t work for her. Instead he manifests into being a werewolf and almost kills her. MORAL OF THESE STORIES, KEEP THE DANG CHARM!!! DON’T GIVE IT AWAY!!!

Imhotep knocks out Frank and kidnaps Helen, taking her away to the museum to complete the ritual.

Boris Karloff and Zita Johann in 'The Mummy'

However, Ankh-es-en-Amon doesn’t want to die and be transformed, she likes being alive. She also knows that she is someone else and wants to live that life as well.

Just as Frank and Dr. Miller storm in, Ankh-es-en-Amon calls upon Isis for help and protection.

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Isis comes to life and turns Imhotep into a pile of dust. Frank calls Helen back from the spirit world and the two live happily ever after.

I guess that's all

Click here to watch the full movie.

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So I took this quiz to see what classic monster I am. I totally thought I would get The Phantom of the Opera, but instead I got the Mummy.

Go here to see who you are.

Go here to see who you are.

I have to say that some of that I agree with. The classic things are spot on as I’m sure any of you who have read my posts have realized that.

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To start Horrorfest II from the beginning, go to There Are Many Strange Legends in the Amazon: The Creature From The Black Lagoon (1954)

For the previous post, go to Say Something Human: Warm Bodies (2013)

 halloween bannerFor more Boris Karloff, go to It’s Alive, it’s ALIVE!: Frankenstein (1931)

For more Classic Horror Films, go to Feast Your Eyes On My Accursed Ugliness: The Phantom of the Opera (1925)

For more mummies, go to Grimwood Ghouls’ Gym Teacher: Scooby-Doo and the Ghoul School (1988)

I Don’t Belong in the World: Carnival of Souls (1962)

I don’t belong in the world

Carnival of Souls is a very creepy movie! It was simply fantastic! I highly recommend it for anyone out there who is into creepy films as this one really fits the bill. It was made in 1962 in three weeks on a very low budget. It was categorized as a B horror film, and due to problems with the distributing company, (it went out of business), it failed to be as big of a hit as it could have been. However, it is now a cult classic and loved by many. If you want to watch the film click here.

****FYI Spolier Alert****

The film starts off with this girl, Mary, who is out in her car driving around with her friends. They run into these guys who challenge them to a drag race, and as every young adult does in ’50s and ’60s movies, they agree.

As I’m sure you have already guessed, it does not turn out well. In fact the girls’ car ends up going right over a bridge and crashing into a river. The police spend three hours dragging the water searching for the car or the bodies, when something strange happens……

Hey guys! How ya doing?

Mary walks out the river UNHARMED! She is pefectly fine, just dirty and for some strange reason doesn’t remember what happened to cause her to escape unharmed.

However after this episode Mary isn’t at all like herself. She is colder, and wants to isolate herself. She even speaks at one time how she hates being with her parents, calling them “those people”, a feeling she had never expressed before. She ends packing up and moving to Utah where she will be an organist for a local church.

HOWEVER, this is were the film starts to get REALLY CREEPY. I recommend making sure you watch this late at night in the dark for optimal effect.

So she’s driving along on the way to this town and notices this pavillion in which she feels a connection to, but shrugs it off. She continues driving along a deserted road…everything is going great when all of a sudden……

A FLOATING FACE APPEARS IN HER WINDOW!!!!!!!

OMG this part scared me so bad when I first watched it! She’s out on this deserted road and all of a sudden a face without a body APPEARS FLOATING OUTSIDE HER WINDOW!

And this guy is no looker! He’s a majorly creepy dude!

Hello Mary

After that scare, she somehow makes it to a gas station to get directions to the boarding house she is going to stay at. She also asks the attendent about the pavilion. He tells her that it used to be a carnival.

(Okay now we can totally tell that something creepy is going to go down in that Carnival. The anticipation is rising!!!!!)

So she gets to the boarding house where we have a somewhat comedic landlady. Mary is starting to feel better about what happened, shrugging it off as being tired and scared. The next day she visits the church and starts practicing.Everyone is touched by her lovely organ music, it is as sweet as the songs of angels!

(Now I know that organ music can be lovely to some, but to me it always makes me think of creepy monsters such as the Phantom of the Opera or Dracula.)

The minister gives Mary a ride home and she asks to see the carnival.

This movie has some really beautiful cinematography. If you don’t watch it for the horror                                                                              one should watch it for that.

So Mary returns home, still confused as to what her connection to the place must be. Her neighbor John, tries to come on to her but with really lame lines and Mary is just not having any of it.

As she is finally able to get rid of the loser, she looks outside……………..ONLY TO SEE THE FACE AGAIN!!!!!!

AND HE COMES INSIDE THE HOUSE! Mary runs out of her room to look, and THERE HE IS WALKING THROUGH THE DOOR!  AND STARTS TO CLIMB UP THE STAIRS!!!!! HE’S COMING FOR HER!!! RUN MARY! RUN!! RUN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Mary does run up to her room. And there’s a knock on the door and…..and…..and…..and….and….

It turns out to be the landlady! And she hasn’t seen anyone walking around the house. (Hmm….very suspicious!)

The next day John tries to come on to Mary again and we find out that he reeeeeeeeeeally likes to drink. Mary is very much still uninterested and goes on to buy a new dress.

Then the strangest thing happens. Mary tries on her dress and goes out to talk to the salelady about the hem…..When NO ONE CAN HEAR HER. NO ONE SEES HER. AND SHE CAN’T HEAR ANYTHING.

She changes and wanders aimlessly through the town trying to figure out why she can’t be heard or seen or hear anything.Eventually her hearing comes back and she continues on her way.

She goes to get a drink of water from the drinking fountain when a man comes upon her…….

I’m Back!

Luckily as Mary is running away in fear she happens to run right into a psychiatrist.

Literally. He just happened” to be running about in that area.

He takes her to his office so that she can talk to him and they can work out what she is feeling. And what she thinks she is seeing. He tells her that the only way to truly get over these hallucinations is to go to the carnival. The carnival is where everything began.

She goes and hopes that everything will be better for her. That the nightmare will be over.

The next day she goes to work and starts out playing a lovely song in the church…when all of a sudden………something comes over her and she plays devilish, creepy, horrifying music.

What’s coming over me?

Her hellish music causes her to lose her job, and she goes on home. She ends up going out with John as she is so freaked out and doesn’t want to be alone, but that doesn’t turn out to be any good; as Mary is still so cool and icy. She has a major freakout thinking she sees the creepy guy everywhere, and John takes her home. Mary rushes into her room, with John following hoping to get lucky. She looks up in the mirror expecting to see John when who should be there but…..

THE CREEPY GUY! THE GUY IS KISSING HER!

Mary looks up in shock, and screams. John is also freaked out and takes off to the safety of his room.

The next day she takes her car in to be looked at, only to have another experience with the creepy guy! She runs off scared for her life! And then no one can see or hear her anymore. She keeps seeing creepy dead people everywhere she goes.

But just like before, everything goes back to normal. She can hear and others can hear her.

She runs to the psychiatrist’s office, so confused and upset; pouring out all her feelings and emotions to him.

When what should happen but………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

The CREEPY FACE MAN!

But then Mary wakes up in her car. Was it all a dream? What is happening to her?!

She runs to the carnival, once again to try and get where it all began to end it all. But that is where it really gets creepy. Men and women rise from the water and they do a creepy dance of death. The dance that Mary sees herself in!

The creepy guy and company follow her and chase her to the beach where they all grab her and everything fades to black.

The next day the minister and psychiatrist are looking for Mary. They find her shoes, footprints, and what looks like signs of a struggle on the beach, but there is no Mary to be found.

Back in Mary’s town the police have finally been able to drag the river bottoms and get the car out.

However, they are in for a big surprise as there are THREE bodies in the car. Mary’s body is in the car!

dun-dun-duuuun

I thought it was a simply fantastic movie! Some pieces are predictable, but the creepiness lives throughout.

I hope you enjoyed the first of these posts as there are more to come.

Here is a cover page I made for my facebook as part of my countdown to Halloween:

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Fo more on B Horror films, go to Eternal Punishment for Anyone Who Opens This Casket

For more on carnivals, go to A Tale So Strange It Must Be True

For more on cult classics, go to They’re Coming to Get You Barbara