The Curse of King Tut's Tomb: The Complete Miniseries
4 out of 10
5 out of 10
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Rating: Not Rated
Casper Van Dien as Danny Freemont
Leonor Varela as Dr.Azelia Barakat
Jonathan Hyde as Morgan Sinclaire
Steven Waddington as McGreevy
Malcolm McDowell as Cairns
Simon Callow as Russell
Niko Nicotera as Andrew Walker
Tat Whalley as Rembrandt
Patrick Toomey as Jacques Belmond
Brendan Patricks as Eastcliff
David Schofield as Axelrod
Parvin Dabas as Heikal
Suvarchala Narayanan as Margaretha
Francisco Bosch as Tutankhamen
Robin Das as Mahmoud
The Hellfire Club
Filming in India
5.1 Dolby Digital Surround
5.1 DTS Surround
Running Time: 170 Minutes
The following is from the DVD cover:
"Thousands of years ago, the great Child King Tutankhamen ruled. Few know the details of his life—no one knows the secrets of his death. All that is about to change.
Free-spirited archaeologist Danny Fremont (Casper Van Dien, "Sleepy Hollow") is certain that if found, King Tut's Emerald Tablet would hold the power to control the world. Unfortunately, the only one who believes Fremont is his nemesis archaeologist Morgan Sinclair (Jonathan Hyde, "Titanic"), a member of a secret society who wants the tablet to harness unspeakable evil on the world and will stop at nothing to get it.
With the help of a crackerjack team that includes the doubting Egyptologist Dr. Barakat (Leonor Varela, "Cleopatra"), Fremont ventures into the Valley of the Kings, toward Tut's tomb, nearer the portal to another world, and closer to the truth behind a mystery that will change the world forever—or end it.
Directed by action movie veteran Russell Mulcahy ("Highlander") and co-starring Golden Globe® nominee Malcolm McDowell ("A Clockwork Orange") and Simon Callow ("The Phantom of the Opera")."
"The Curse of King Tut's Tomb: The Complete Miniseries" is not rated
I've seen a lot of Indiana Jones rip-offs over the years, but this is definitely one of the most blatant. The first half of this series mirrors the plot of "Raiders of the Lost Ark." You have rival archeologists racing each other to make an archeological discovery in Cairo. Many of the scenes are the same including a big dig scene, a street fight, and more. It also rips off the look and feel of the classic film. The similarities reach a climax when Casper Van Dien walks out wearing a fedora, a satchel, and an outfit almost identically mirroring Indy. The only thing missing is a whip and a few Nazis to beat up. This would be OK if the show brought something original to the table, but it doesn't. Everything about this mini-series is derivative from some other, better film.
The second half of the mini-series rips off "The Mummy" movies. You have supernatural demons terrorizing the citizens of Cairo while our heroes do battle with an evil monster. Again, this would be OK if it was doing something new. After all, "The Mummy" ripped off Indiana Jones in a lot of ways, but it still managed to be entertaining. That's not the case here. And the fact that it's a mini-series means it's dragged on about an hour and a half longer than necessary.
The acting and script are all simply mediocre. However, the look of the film is quite impressive. They shot this film in India and got a lot of bang for their buck. While they shot on the same Cairo street set over and over from different angles, it still looked pretty good for a TV movie. The effects, while cheesy at times, weren't all that bad either. I've seen worse in TV movies.
There are a couple of bonus features on this DVD. One features Malcolm McDowell and another cast member discussing the Hellfire Club, a mysterious evil organization out for world domination. The second featurette shows the cast and crew discussing what it's like shooting in India. They discuss the culture as well as the technical challenges of shooting there.
This movie is mainly for adventure / fantasy fans who like Indiana Jones rip-offs and any fans of Casper Van Dien. Everyone else should just watch "Raiders of the Lost Ark" and "The Mummy" again.