Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (October 21, 2018)
1944’s The Mummy’s Curse picks up where 1944’s The Mummy’s Ghost finished, but it starts with bad sign number one. The story seems like it should take place in the same locale as Ghost and 1942’s The Mummy’s Tomb, but oddly we’ve left the US northeast and headed to Bayou country in Louisiana.
Why does this occur? I have no idea - I guess they thought it’d look cool.
Curse also takes place 25 years after the conclusion of Ghost. Somebody needs to figure out the timeline of all these films, but this is rendered difficult because none of the movies clearly states a year.
Tomb occurred 30 years following Hand, which took place in some undetermined time, but I can’t recall if Ghost went far into the future past Tomb. (Hey, all of these suckers blend together after a while!)
I think Ghost stayed fairly contemporary with Tomb, and some feel Tomb took place in the early Forties because the lead goes into the Army. Since he was drafted as an officer, that makes sense, so I feel Tomb and Ghost existed in then-contemporary times, while Hand was from the 1910s.
In any case, Curse presents events that are supposed to be at least 55 years after Hand, so it’s amazing how much all of these societies look like 1940s America! I guess they figured no one would realize that Curse was supposed to take place in the late Sixties, for there are no adaptations or nods to the then-future. If they couldn’t figure out what part of the country to place the story, I can’t expect them to worry about details like that either, I suppose.
Whatever the situation may be, Curse gives us more of what we saw in the first three films. Kharis (Lon Chaney Jr.) again tries to hook up with Ananka (Virginia Christine), as the college babe of Ghost has become a full-fledged mummy herself in the interim.
Both scare a lot of folks and wreak moderate havoc. Excitement ensues.
At least in theory it does, but the results look an awful lot like the film’s predecessors. One problem with Curse is that it suffers from an overabundance of flashbacks.
That issue plagued Tomb as well, which used far too much of its brief running time to show us what happened in the first flick. Curse isn’t as over the top in this regard, but it definitely gives us too much backstory.
That’s a problem largely because none of it matters. These films can’t keep any facts straight, so why bother with continuity and history?
Frankly, I’m surprised I can recall anything about the last three flicks, as they all seem like the same piece. Returns continued to diminish throughout the series, as I got more and more tired with the rehashed antics of the mummy. Granted, these films weren’t meant to be watched back-to-back-to-back-to-back in one pathetic marathon, but I can’t imagine that The Mummy’s Curse would be interesting under the best of circumstances.
By the way, the prior DVD’s case tried to obscure the film’s geographic inconsistencies. It stated “the trouble begins when mummy Kharis is recovered and transported to Cajun country for study by a bunch of prodding archaeologists”.
However, that’s totally wrong, as the movie takes place nowhere other than Louisiana. While the archaeologists do seek the mummies, they don’t transport anybody anywhere and it’s all in the Bayou.
Actually, the movie tries to make us believe all the prior events happened in the South as well. It’s very odd.