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Dawn Of The Mummy
cast: Brenda King, Barry Satells, Ellen Faison, George Peck, and John Salvo

producer and director: Frank Agrama

88 minutes (18) 1981
widescreen ratio 1.85:1
Anchor Bay UK DVD Region 2 retail
Also available to buy on video

RATING: 6/10
reviewed by Jeff Young
A low-budget shocker with a cult reputation since it first appeared uncut on video about 20 years ago, Dawn Of The Mummy owes a substantial debt to George Romero's zombie classic Dawn Of The Dead, and to this day remains perhaps the only full-blooded gore fest based on Egyptian tales regarding the resurrection of an ancient but well preserved corpse.
   Despite the promise of authenticity inspired by its 3000 BC opening sequence, which shows the embalming process in wonderfully gratuitous detail, this rather uninteresting and unimaginative horror is set mostly in the present, and features a newly re-opened tomb interior that provides a suitably exotic backdrop for a NY fashion photo-shoot. This, of course, means there's much hysterical screaming of supposedly glamorous models when the grave robbers' greed for long buried gold triggers an uprising of dead flesh-eaters from the desert. Some of the night scenes are very poorly lit but, as if in compensation, we can enjoy the abundant maniacal enthusiasm for bloody slaughter during the finale's wedding party and, although this clearly exploitative drama suffers from wild overacting that undermines any measure of characterisation, there's a really neat cleaver-in-the-head killing that's essential viewing for all fans of violent death movies.
   This DVD presentation is in widescreen format enhanced for widescreen TV, and the disc extras include a photo gallery, some notes on Mummy movies, and a director's commentary that's candidly informative about the filmmaking process in Cairo studios, and describes the stylistic and technical influence of the Italians on Egyptian movies.
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