Tonight on our Me-TV network- after all the sequels have aired-we finally bring back the original Boris Karloff classic that added another cornerstone to the Universal monster roster-“The Mummy”! You’ll see the story as it was told originally in this 1932 film- an archeological dig for the tomb of Egyptian princess Anksenahmen unearths a different mummy-a high priest, amazingly preserved, with some of the usual burial blessings curiously missing, along with a forbidden scroll. When an over-anxious young archeologist translates and reads the scroll, the high priest- Im Ho Tep (not Kharis-thanks for the correction!)- is revived! He shambles away, as the poor guy collapses in hysterics.
Years later, a related party comes back to try to find the tomb- and is greeted by the gaunt figure of one Ardath Bey-who says he can show them where the princess’ tomb is located! Upon its discovery-and against the mysterious Egyptian’s wishes-her mummy and all her artifacts are donated to the British museum…but Ardath Bey has his own agenda- retrieve the scroll with the revival spell on it, and bring back his beloved- whom, it turns out, was the reason he was mummified alive! When he discovers a beautiful young woman whom he thinks is the reincarnation of his love, he sets out to make her “remember” who she is- and he’ll destroy anyone who tries to stop him!
Karloff is amazing in this film- his Ardath Bey is so eerie and threatening, he truly seems like he is not quite human. I have always enjoyed the flashback scenes that depict his ancient history and his “crime” committed to save his beloved. This is probably the only movie where we see the bandage-covered shambling Mummy persona for such a short amount of time- in most of the “sequels”, all we see is the wrapped monster, and no human-like incarnation such as the one Karloff treats us to here. Watch for some familiar actors we’ve seen before in the Bela Lugosi “Dracula”- in fact, many have pointed out the similar structure of this movie and the vampire film.
Among the Sven segments in this show you will find an interview, from a few years back, with our good friend, actor Kevin J. O’Connor- who played the part of the scheming weasel Beni in the Brendan Fraser 1999 re-boot of “The Mummy”. I just talked to Kevin recently, and he is playing a part in the “Mob Doctor” series that is currently shooting in Chicago. In our interview, he talks about his role as Beni, as well as getting to play the classic Universal horror character Ygor in “Van Helsing”.
“The Mummy” runs tonight on the Me-TV network, all across America, at 10 pm eastern, 9 pm central, 1 am on KOFY in San Francisco, or- please check your local listings. One further note- for those of you who will be crying “…not another Mummy movie!”: folks- this is THE Mummy movie- the original classic, with horror icon Karloff- and it’s the origin of that stock footage that seemed to show up in every Mummy sequel. Plus-and I promise you this- it will be the LAST Mummy movie we will show this year! In my opinion- it’s also the best.
For our Chicago fans, coinciding with the air and WATER show- you get a final look at “The Creature Walks Among Us” on WCIU, the U, at 11 am…and on the U Too at 3 pm, the ever –popular “Monster from a Prehistoric Planet”.
With the summer drought, the dry sands of Egypt will seem very familiar to a lot of us! See you tonight for the incomparable Karloff!