Being From Another Planet (1982)
Directed by Tom Kennedy
Written by Tom Friedman
Run Time: 83 min
Other Titles: "Time Walker"
"Professor...could you move over here and smile at the mummy?"
Well, another bad mummy movie. But with a twist...the mummy is actually an alien that happened to crash land in Egypt way back when. Wow! Cool! Director Tom Kennedy actually began his "career" as an assistant editor in an Italian pseudo-documentary about the American slave trade entitled White Devil: Black Hell (rated X!). He also edited a 1974 slasher called Silent Night, Bloody Night along with a TV Series named "The Big Blue Marble". (Never seen it and don't want to.) Being From Another Planet is Tom's first and only attempt at directing a film, and unsurprisingly, he faded away into obscurity shortly after. I have a bad feeling about this...
By the way, sorry about the crappy screen shots. Old copy of the movie.
The opening credits are superimposed over shots of Egyptian ruins, pots, scrolls, what have you. Kind of like visiting the Egyptian History section of the museum and watching a bad movie at the same time. Oh joy. Wait a minute, now we hear somebody shouting about an earthquake, which is a rather surprising thing to hear when the camera is showing an Egyptian pot.
Oh, now I get it. We cut to see two explorers in a cave. The previous shots of the pots and hieroglyphics was an attempt to convince us that the opening scene takes place in Egypt. If the pots fail to convince you, then the fact that the young assistant's name is "Abdul" should pretty much get it through your thick head. No wait, one more clue, the words "King Tutankhamen's Tomb" appear on the screen, just to make sure you 'get it'.
Hmm. I didn't think two guys equipped with t-shirts and hand-held flashlights could so easily penetrate the inner sanctum of King Tutankhamen's tomb, but there you go. Oh yeah, the, *ahem*, earthquake we heard them shouting about must have opened a previously undiscovered chamber. Yeah, now that happens a lot.
Ah yes, why it's Professor Douglas McCadden, Egyptologist. As McCadden pans his flashlight across the dusty ruins in the darkened chamber, the light beam strikes the shriveled faces of a collection of desiccated corpses. McCadden jumps back and nearly drops his flashlight in fear, which is odd because, you know, a professor of Egyptology might expect to come across dried corpses in a tomb. Abdul comforts the jittery professor and we cut to the next scene.
Stock footage of a jet landing somewhere. This must imply that McCadden has returned from his adventures, and yes, cut to a generic college campus. Wait, no, according to the words which appear this is none other than the "California Institute of the Sciences". Yeah, you know the one. As a matter of fact, McCadden has returned to California with one of the mummies from King Tut's tomb. Now, I don't think people can just travel to Egypt, buy a flashlight, explore King Tut's tomb, and then pack up mummies and take them home with them, at least not since the end of British colonial rule. But hey, McCadden is our designated Scientist-Hero, so let's cut him some slack.
As a gang of students help McCadden lift the mummy's sarcophagus from the back of a delivery truck (!), a pesky photographer tries to get a bunch of pictures for the dean of the college, (rival) Professor Rossmore. It turns out Rossmore is holding a "press conference" the next day. (Yeah, those huge press conferences that take place whenever a scientist brings back a mummy. You remember reading about those in the newspapers all the time, don't you?)
As McCadden's students stand around with bated breath, our daring professor unlocks the last of the restraints from the sarcophagus' lid. (It's funny to see the professor wearing protective latex gloves while removing the seals, then handing the seals to a student who does not have any gloves on at all. Gee, thanks doc!) The students, under McCadden's instruction, lift the styrofoam, sorry, heavy stone lid, and set it to the side. Inside the stone capsule lies a fantastic gold coffin. (Once again, wouldn't this indicate theft of a national treasure? You would think at the very least this type of archeological find would have to be reported to some sort of international authority.)
As "eiree" music plays on the sound track, one of the more gifted female students (read: hotter) , named Susie, translates the name on the coffin as "Noble Traveler". Oooo! Now they open the inner lid. "Carefully....", McCadden says (gee, you think?). After the inner styrofoam lid is removed, I mean golden lid, the camera reveals what appears to be your everyday mummy, except this one's chest is covered in some sort of green growth. (Can anybody say 'quarantine'?) McCadden tells one of his dorkier students, named Michael (why don't we just call him Victim #1), to gather some samples of the "mold" from the mummy. Upon a closer inspection, the mummy's wrappings appear to have applied in a hurry. "My guess is that he died of some sort of disease," McCadden calmly informs his students that is was "probably the plague or smallpox". (!!) (Hello? Quarantine? Anybody?) Oh yeah, by the way, Michael the Doofus Student, manages to get green powder smeared all over his forearm. Duh. Not too smart there, Einstein.
Later that day, McCadden and some students (boy, it sure would be nice with some names!) are x-raying the mummy. Suddenly, one of the students notices that the x-ray machine has been set to give out more than "10 times" the "normal" dose. (Why they are all just standing around in t-shirts while the mummy is being x-rayed instead of behind some sort of protective cover is not explained. Also, what is the "normal" dose to x-ray a mummy? A 'mummy-rad'?)
"One of those damned kids must have knocked [the x-ray machine] off its setting!" shouts the x-ray technician. ("Damned kids" ??) (OK, I just heard his name is "Sharpe". Thanks guys.)
"Let's start again," Parker suggests.
"Let's not," McCadden growls, "It's had enough radiation for one night!" (Huh?!)
Ahhh, you know, when you can't think of any better way to create a monster, why not just fall back on good-old fashion radiation. Hell, it worked in hundreds of monster movies in the 50's and 60's...who could ever get tired of that plot device, eh?
In the lab, Sharpe develops the x-ray pictures. Everything seems to be ok, except...wait, what are those objects next to the mummy's head? Could they be...yes!...jewels in a hidden compartment? (Oops! Didn't mean to give that away.)
Anyway, Sharpe scurries down to the examination room. After making sure he's alone, the greedy technician sneaks in and after about 2 seconds of looking, finds a secret compartment in the side of the stone box. Yes, he pockets the handful of gems. Surprise, surprise. He also finds what looks like an over-sized Star Trek emblem. Because, you see, it looks 'spacey' and the mummy is from outer space. Crap! Did I give that away too? Sharpe takes a new x-ray of the mummy, this time without the jewels in the picture, in order to hide the fact.
To anybody who may have never seen a cheap movie before, let's make some quick predictions:
1) Doofus with green mummy powder on his arm: dead meat.
2) Greedy technician who took gems: dead meat.
3) Jewels turn out to be more than jewels: true.
See how much fun running a bad-movie web site can be?
(Notes From the Future: I was wrong on two of those predictions. But not like it mattered.)
As Sharpe makes his way out of the examination room, he spots somebody coming down the hallway toward him. Instead of pretending like, well, he works there, which in fact is what he actually does, he gets totally paranoid, hides in some sort of broom closet, and shoves the incriminating x-ray behind a furnace. Let's see, he doesn't seem to be able to get his hand behind the furnace in order to retrieve the x-rays after the person walks by. Yup. He's dead meat.
Even later that night, I think, it doesn't appear that time continuity was the top priority in making this film, McCadden and Gifted-Hot-Chick are burning the midnight oil going over some scrolls found along with the mummy. The phone rings, and McCadden receives word that the green powder found on the mummy. "Is some sort of dormant mold." (Who the hell are those bone-heads who work at this university?)
Hey! Another name! Gifted-Hot-Chick is named Susie. (Played by none other than Nina Axelrod of Critters 3 (1991), Cobra (1986), and Roller Boogie (1979) fame. Never heard of her? Me neither.)
Anyway, McCadden asks Susie her opinion of a strange drawing that was found rolled up with one of the scrolls. Not only is the drawing unusual, but it's written on some sort of strange paper-like substance that he's never seen before. (If anybody cares, it looks like that Star Trek thingee that Sharpe found along with the jewels. Don't you just love when the plot threads of a well written story are woven together in such an interesting manner?) McCadden gives Susie a kiss on the arm before she leaves to deliver the powder sample to somewhere. Yes, sub-plot #53: McCadden and Susie are in a student-teacher relationship.
Yes, well, the mummy, having received the minimum dosage of x-rays required to bring back an alien from the dead, is now coming alive. Its chest begins to light up (don't ask), and it also begins to growl (!). Alas, I can't get a decent screen shot for you because the mummy is shot in near total darkness. Boy, great movie.
The next morning Susie and McCadden discover the secret compartment for themselves. (Don't ask. Let's just so this secret compartment is about the most un-secret compartment I've ever seen.) Inside the drawer is a bunch of green goo. "Don't touch it!" McCadden shouts as Susie makes to stick her finger in the glop. (Once again...is this the California Institute of the Sciences for Dummies?) "Go tell Melrose that something has happened to the mold!" McCadden shouts at Susie.
(Professor Melrose is played by Austin Stoker. Who? Why Austin Stoker from Airport '75 (1974), Battle for the Planet of the Apes (1973), Return to the Planet of the Apes (1975), and the hilariously atrocious 1988 mutant-cat flick Uninvited.)
Meanwhile, the enterprising x-ray technician-cum-jewel thief, Sharpe, is at a pawn shop trying to sell the jewels he swiped from the un-secret compartment. Unimpressed with the find, the clerk behind the desk declares them to be worthless. "They're three thousand years old!" Sharpe exclaims, "They're ancient, man!" Sharpe scoops up the 'jewels' and storms out of the pawn shop in a huff.
Back at the university, Professor Melrose, an expert in pathology, declares that the mold is no longer dormant. In fact, nobody is to come near the coffin until it can be identified. Oh no! But this is the morning of the, *ahem*, press conference! Melrose says he'll talk to Rossmore and get him to call off the event.
As if on cue, literally, in come a gaggle of reporters. "Evening news," one man identifies himself as before pointing towards the mummy and asking, "Is this the stiff?" (!)
OK, time out. Really now. There are about 20 reporters and camera men in the auditorium trying to get a better look at the mummy, snapping pictures of McCadden, and so on. It's just a little hard to swallow that anybody outside the scientific community would give a rat's ass about all this. I mean, King Tut was one thing, and that was just because of the gold. Apologies to all Egyptologists out there (and I'd be surprised if too many Egyptologists were reading my site), but we all thought King Tut was cool because of his bling-bling.
Well gosh, Rossmore refuses to call off the conference, so McCadden can only ask Susie and Dorky Student #2 to try and keep the press at bay. While the "press" murmurs and grumbles in the seats, DS2 touches some of the mold on the side of the coffin. As if receiving an electric shock (complete with a "zap" sound foleyed onto the sound track), DS2 jumps back in pain and grabs his injured hand which is already turning green. (This bit reminds me of that little story in Stephen King's movie "Creep Show" where that hill-billy touches the meteor and is consumed by that veracious plant growth. The only difference is that that movie was pretty cool and this movie sucks.)
The press jumps out of the seats and tries to get a better look at the hand as DS2 is whisked off to the hospital. OK, wait a minute. DS2's finger was burned to a crisp, not infected with a space-mold. I retract all defamatory remarks made about this film while comparing it to "Creep Show". Naahhh, it still sucks.
Cut to an unidentified building on campus. Inside we are treated to Mummy-Cam!: The wonderful POV shot of the mummy as it stalks around the university's power station or something. In an unusually creative twist, the POV is not tinted red, but instead, get this, is tinted green! Auteur! Auteur!
Back at the press conference, McCadden is about to unveil the mummy to the eager news reporters. As the reports leap to the feet and crowd around the stone coffin, McCadden orders two policemen (!) to remove the inner lid. <Gasp>! The mummy's gone! A criminal investigation is quickly initiated.
The first (and probably only suspect) is greedy-jewel-thieving Sharpe. As the campus police captain Willoughby plays hardball, one of the professors tries the smooth approach, "I was a frat man, I know what it's like...slow night...nothing to do...have a few beers."
"And steal a mummy," the Captain sarcastically adds. (Zing!)
Blah. This exciting interrogation scene sputters to a close with Rossmore offering a 24-hour amnesty period for the mummy's return. (Ha! Talk about "return of the mummy"..ho ho...I'm so good.)
Back to Mummy-Cam! No wait, back to the interrogation scene. I guess the previous scene was inserted simply to reassure the viewer that the mummy is still shuffling around the boiler room. Despite McCadden's insistence that they call in the local police, Dean Rossmore, Captain Willoughby, and Rossmore's ass-sucking right-hand man, Bruce, decide to cover up the whole "Missing-Mummy-Flesh-Eating-Mold" thing and just wait for those who took the artifact to show up at the hospital, since, you know, the mold will probably end up burning them anyway. McCadden, disgusted with the other's lack of concern, stomps off while saying, "I'm going to find that mummy before somebody else gets hurt!" (You go, boy!)
Mummy-Cam! Oh, looky here! A janitor, all by his lonesome, pushing around a mop bucket in the boiler room. I wonder what's going to happen next? Where did these writers come up with such fresh situations!?
Janitor hears a noise.
Janitor calls out "Anybody there?"
Janitor sets down mop and walks into dark area alone.
Janitor screams and is killed off camera without showing the viewer the monster.
Yup. We're watching a crappy movie alright!
Cut to McCadden peering through an electron microscope in Melrose's lab. Melrose, who obviously attended the 'University of Vague Scientific Explanations', reports his findings:"It's just crazy. The nucleus is unstable. The chromosomal pattern is mystifying...and the cells are multiplying at a rate so fast I can hardly measure it."
Wow, that really answers a lot of questions, doc!
A telephone call interrupts this inane scientific banter. It's the hospital. Dorky Student #2 is not getting any better. In fact, the mold is devouring his flesh, and his spread from his finger almost up to his elbow. (So yes, I was right when I said that the he was infected when he touched the coffin and not just burned. I withdraw my retraction of previous comments about this being a crappy movie compared to "Creep Show". You know what I mean.)
Ok, we now interrupt your viewing pleasure to bring you a sequence of totally unrelated scenes:
Cut to Captain Willoughby, out on his rounds, who just happens to enter the janitor's office and discovers that it's totally trashed. He radios his findings to Rossmore.
Cut to McCadden visiting the photographer-girl (remember her from scene 2?). She happens to be a DJ at radio station KCIS, the campus radio station. His first thought is to broadcast a warning message to who ever the "bad boys" were that took the mummy.
Cut to see a shadowy figure walking in front of an open door.
Storytelling at its finest. This is craftsmanship, I tell ya!
Meanwhile, Rossmore is chugging booze and watching the nightly news. Of course, the reporters are having a field day with the 'missing mummy' fiasco. Yeah, that kind of story would certainly headline the evening news in a major California city. You bet. Oh yeah, and Sharpe finally managed to peddle off one of those goofy jewels to one of his 'friends' for 50 bucks.
With some dough in his pocket from the sale of the crystal, Sharpe and his floozy girlfriend, Sherri, head out to dinner at a, *ahem*, fine restaurant. If you look carefully, you'll notice that Sherri is flashing one of those jewels that Sharpe must have had made into a necklace in the past 4 hours since stealing the stones from the mummy's coffin.
As Sharpe and his main squeeze enjoy their fine meal, a couple of Sharpe's frat brothers bang on the window and motion for him to come outside. As it turns out, Sharpe owes these 2 dolts a whopping $25 bucks, which they eagerly remove from his pocket. (Hey watch it! That's not a roll of quarters! Heh, heh...) Cut to see a dark form with a blinking light in its head. I think it's the monster's head. The only scenes showing the monster so far are almost completely dark. Great movie.
Anyway, Sherri's little necklace thingee starts to glow and flash. Hey! It's flashing just like the monster's glowing-rock thingee! I wonder if the monster is going to try and retrieve the rock from Sherri's neck resulting in her untimely demise?
OK, I'm really trying to follow what's happening here, but thanks to the editing, I have to struggle. I don't like to struggle. I run a bad-movie web site. I struggle enough.
Cut to Mummy-Cam! showing the mummy still trudging around in the boiler room.
Cut to Sharpe who has managed to pay off his debt to the frat bros with the last of those rocks.
Cut to Frat Boy #1 who visits his Soon-To-Be-Doomed-Girlfriend at her parent's house (?), house of somebody she's baby-sitting for (?), somewhere. Anyway, on the way up to the bedroom, FB1 somehow manages to drop his glowing-rock necklace thingee into the baby's crib. (How do these guys get those crystals mounted into necklaces so damn fast?!)
Yes, I see, somehow the mummy has managed to get inside the house without making the least bit of noise. The toddler in the crib looks up at the alien-flesh-eating-hell-beast and says "goo goo". Alas, FB1 and STBDG have retrieved the necklace from the crib (I didn't really see when, but let's just get this over with) and are now trying it on for size, thus inadvertently sparing the baby from the mummy-alien's wrath. Necklace slung around STBDG's neck, the two love birds re-commence their tongue-wrestling session in the upstairs bedroom.
This delightful scene is broken up when the baby starts crying. STBDG jumps up and heads down the hall to give the baby "a doll" (her words, not mine), and in keeping with the film's precedence of not showing any more of the monster than absolutely necessary, a green arm reaches out from an adjoining room and pushes her against a wall. Somehow, being pushed against the wall with less-than-moderate force is enough to kill her. FB1 pokes his head out to investigate and we cut to Mummy-Cam! back outside in the woods. (Huh?!)
Somehow, it appears that STBDG, whose name turns out to be Ellen, has been taken to the hospital. The resident physician has called in a Lt. Plummer, whose job is to, well, I'm not sure. But anyway, Lt. Plummer is now involved in the case in the capacity of Useless Character #3. Ah yes, the plot-holes are really being filled in now, it was FB1 that called the hospital, (his name is 'Greg', for those of you keeping score.) Greg is in shock after seeing the finished print of this film, I mean, after seeing the mummy beat down his girlfriend, and is going to be kept under observation "for a few hours". In a throw-away line, we learn that Dorky Student Who Touched The Mold In The Press Conference (look, I can't keep track of all the idiots in this film anymore) has had his arm amputated. (Whew! Thank you...I was dying with anticipation wondering how that sub-plot would turn out!)
More scenes confusingly jumbled together: Somebody going into the dead janitor's room and looking at something that is supposed to be important. This something is so important that I can't make out what it is. Dr. Melrose looking at a bank of instruments that are attached to an off-camera patient, so we have no idea who he is working with. And of course, a quick cut back to Mummy-Cam!, revealing that the mummy is, yes, back in the boiler room.
The mummy grabs the ends of a large electrical cable and jams them together. This causes a short circuit across the entire city (!) that makes all types of things go hay-wire. In fact, the EKG machine hooked up to Ellen (?) starts to make the exact same noise that Pac Man makes when he's eating ghosts. (I'm not kidding. Really. See the movie and listen for yourself. They obviously swiped this sound from a Pac Man game, which at the time (i.e., 1982) was pretty new and unfamiliar. Now it just sounds ridiculous.)
The mummy then takes the jewel he swiped from Ellen and puts it into the Star-Trek thingee. Where exactly this mummy is hiding on a busy college campus is unclear. But anyway, the little crystal starts to glow, so I'm all a-shiver with anticipation as to what's going to happen when it has all the stones in place. Absolutely a-shiver, I say.
About time for some ancient scroll transcribing, you say? Well, is it your lucky day! McCadden gathers Dr. Melrose and Susie in his office where he explains the writings he's discovered on that oh-so-strange scroll. After a bunch of BS, McCadden gets to the point. Look, I'll do you a favor and just say that this "mummy" came down from space and spread a plague amongst the Egyptians. Melrose finds it hard to believe that a flesh-eating mold could stay dormant for 3000 years, but agrees to help find a cure. (I find it hard to believe I'm still watching this movie after 40 minutes.) This awesome think tank figures that if they find out what brought the fungus out of dormancy they should be able to find out how to cure it. (Um, I'm not sure if that's how advanced immunology research procedures work, but I'll go along with it for now.)
We next see Melrose burning the midnight oil in his lab. The actor portraying Melrose is trying his damndest to look 'scientific' while puzzling over an array of obviously inappropriate instruments, but it just comes off so...oh what's the word...unconvincing. Anyway, Melrose zaps a fungus sample (while sitting directly in front of the x-ray machine! Man, I hope this guy hadn't planned on having any kids!), and the sample suddenly begins to expand and spread over the table via the incredible special-effects technique of pumping green goo through a hole in the table top.
Gasp! But wait a minute! Ellen is being loaded into an x-ray machine at the hospital! If Melrose doesn't warn them to stop in time, why, the fungus will devour Ellen! Too late. The mold spreads over her body, resulting in one of the few scenes in the movie that actually show any type of "gross-ness". (Probably because 'green goo' fit into the special effects budget.)
Oh great, another useless sub-plot. Another Dorky Student, Stanley, tries to woo Susie away from Professor McCadden by giving her a bracelet set with, yes, one of the mummy stones.
Back in the boiler room, police are poking around in the darkness for some reason. OK, why are the police there?
The janitor is missing: Well, the mummy killed him, what, 3 days ago?
Trying to locate the cause of the blackout: Why would the cops do that?
This is a stupid movie: The evidence tends to point to this last explanation.
Anyway, the cops hear a noise and go to investigate. They open a cabinet door and a bunch of rats (!) jump out onto the floor. Maybe this was meant to be comical, but I just can't tell, but the cops scream and run away in fright. If you think that's funny, then more power to you.
Oh boy, one of the frats is having an Egyptian theme party in order to irritate Professor Rossmore. Before you ask, yes, one of the frat guys has dressed himself up like a mummy. Har-dee-har. Let me share the pain with you as one of the frat guys tells a joke at the party:
"Did you hear about the lady that got stuck in King Tut's tomb? Nine months later she was a 'mummy'."
Hurts, don't it?
Cut to Mummy-Cam! proceeding towards the frat house. Inside the frat house, the party is swinging in the way that only 1980's bad movies can portray them: bad music, white kids dancing, beer guzzling, and so on.
Some Idiot Frat Guy (IFG) gets dumped by his girlfriend. As she gets into her new boyfriend's car, she tosses the glowing-necklace thingee onto the ground in one of those "It Is So Over Between Us" sentiments. Unfortunately for IFG, he picks up the necklace just as the mummy walks behind him. With a swift backhand to the chops, the mummy knocks IFG against a wall and kills him. The second mummy-stone is collected and put into place on Star Trek thingee.
With the second stone in place, a massive energy drain plunges the city into a brown out. A technician named Parker (who's getting drunk at the party!), scurries to a battered old computer which is supposed to be hooked up to a freakin' nuclear reactor. A quick diagnostics check reveals that the "power drain is in reactor bldg." Gee, you think? Also, should drunken frat guys have access to a nuclear reactor? Actually, should any frat guy have access?!
Ok, now I get it. It's not a boiler room, but rather a, *ahem*, "Reactor Complex". Yeah, sure it is. This fact is confirmed when we see Mummy-Cam! following Parker as he pokes around a building with a Reactor Complex" sign taped to the door.
A short while later, the IFG's body is discovered and the police arrive on the scene. After a quick investigation of the crime scene, a bit of the mummy's wrappings is found and McCadden is called in to help with the investigation. As this exciting drama continues, we cut to see the mummy staring up into space, longing for home, I suppose. Once again, this scene is shot in near total darkness, so don't expect to see too much of the movie's "star".
OK, since the film is getting short on runtime, McCadden calls a conference with a select group of students (!), doctors, and professors in order to exposit his theory that, <gasp>, what if the fungus and the mummy are...are you sitting down....from outer space! Unsurprisingly, the others think he's grasping for straws. Although they do agree that the fungus is "like nothing [they've] ever seen before", they just can't make the "quantum leap [?] into the world of superstition."
Time for yet another sub-plot. Dean Rossmore's crony, Bruce, suggests that they could turn all the negative publicity around if they could just pin the mummy's disappearance, and the murders (!), on McCadden. Sounds like a pretty stupid idea, eh? Well it is. Captain Willoughby agrees that somebody must have taken the mummy since "it can't be walking around by itself." That is supposed to be ironic because the mummy is walking around by itself. It's almost as if the film writers were giving a little 'wink' to the viewer. That's what makes these movies so fun! (If you didn't notice the sarcasm in that last bit, then please close this review and move to a different web site. Thank you.)
OK, wait, back at McCadden's office, Susie runs in, screaming that the mummy is chasing her. (Remember the bracelet that doofus gave her when he tried to steal her away from McCadden? No? Don't worry, it doesn't matter.) The mummy pounds down the door as McCadden and Susie cower behind a table...
Wow! Oh Wow! So cool! It was just a dream sequence! You see, that bit about the mummy breaking down the door was just a dream that McCadden was experiencing. Auteur! Auteur! (See above comments about sarcasm and moving to another site.)
Wait a minute, oh wow! MacCadden awakens to see Susie's bracelet laying on the nightstand where the sunlight is striking the stone. Passing through the crystal, the light reveals some sort of spacey-symbol on the far wall of the room. "That looks exactly like the diagram I found inside the scroll!" exclaims McCadden. Well, I shouldn't say "exclaims" since that would indicate a state of emotion, thus requiring a skill called "acting".
McCadden and Susie take the drawing he found in the scroll to their techno-buddie, Parker. Parker agrees that it looks like a wiring schematic. Thanks, Parker. McCadden, starting to get an idea of what's going on, tells Susie to "go to the astronomy center and see what you can find on ancient phenomena, also, check out those NASA information bulletins on 'ultra-long range communication'." Gee. Ancient phenomena. That sure narrows it down for her. Hilariously he tells her to "come right back" if she doesn't find anything. So,what, she has 15 minutes to research "ancient phenomena" and all "those Nasa bulletins"? Yeah, that's going to be some thorough research!
Susie makes her way to the library, and thanks to Mummy-Cam! we see that the mummy is tracking her through a completely deserted campus. I mean, this is supposed to be a major university and there isn't a freakin' soul to be seen. Oh yeah, I guess that's so the mummy can move from place to place without people seeing it and saying, "Hey! A walking flesh-eating-mold-covered mummy!" When Susie goes inside the library, it too is completely deserted. A helpful janitor notices her puzzlement and tells her that "everybody is on a field trip to the observatory". Oh, well, that explains it.
Mummy-Cam! confirms the fact that the mummy has entered the library, and is standing in a dark corner with some sort of pulsing light in its chest. Hey, I have no idea what that's supposed to mean, either. Using Instant POV Super-Speed, the mummy chases Susie through the library even though is has always been shown barely able to stumble about without tipping over. Furthermore, despite the fact that Susie is a Ph.D. student, she doesn't figure out that if she were to drop the glowing bracelet from her arm, the mummy would probably leave her alone.
Susie runs down hall after hall with the mummy on her tail. Instead of heading downstairs and outside for help, she tries to take an elevator (!), which unsurprisingly, the mummy manages to stop from below. With the monster pounding its way up through the floor of the elevator car, Susie is forced to crawl out of the maintenance door in the ceiling. I hope this all sounds as boring as it is to watch.
Blah blah, Susie manages to force open the elevator doors on the next floor and run out of the building. I'm trying to figure out the layout of this building. When Susie was running from the mummy in the beginning, I could clearly see glass exit door leading outside. Yet she takes the elevator up to get to the first floor. Hmmm. Very odd indeed. Well, it is the Institute of Technology, so maybe the library is an experiment in multi-dimensional architecture. OK, I take that back, sort of. She is on the library's roof, but then runs and descends down a staircase on the outside of the building. You know what? I give up.
Oh brother, now Susie finally realizes that the mummy is after the glowing, pulsating, hot jewel on her wrist. Yes, she can't undo the clasp! (C'mon already!) Back to plan B: Run up the stairs again. (But wasn't she already on the roof? Man, I'd love to see this building in the daylight...) Somehow, the mummy immediately catches up with her and grabs the bracelet from Susie's wrist, causing her to fall off a ladder down onto the roof below. (Don't ask. I thought she was already on the roof.)
Susie wakes up later that night in the hospital. A policeman (understandably) is suspicious of her story, and urges her to get some rest.
Parker (the techno guy) and McCadden visit Susie at the hospital and hear her story. When she wraps up her experiences, they head back to reactor control room, i.e., an old PC running DOS. For some reason the mummy tears up a bunch of cables in the reactor complex, setting off an alarm. The computer screen starts flashing a warning message. Unfortunately, the screen flashes in colors that make the text unreadable, but I'm sure it was a very important message none-the-less. (Aren't there people, you know, working, in the Reactor Complex? People that might actually notice a mold-covered-mummy wandering around the premises?!)
McCadden and Parker scurry off to investigate. Despite the reactor complex's immense size, McCadden immediately spots where the mummy was standing via a patch of mold on the floor. "He was here," McCadden expertly deduces upon seeing the patch of alien flesh-eating mold. Incredibly enough, the control panel that the mummy tore away just happened to be the very same one that Sharpe hid the original set of x-rays behind after he had heisted the jewels from the coffin. (Remember that scene? It feels like a million years ago. Go back and re-read the review if you want to. No. Wait. Don't. Just keep going.)
X-rays in hand, McCadden and Parker confront Sharpe at his dorm room. Sharpe confesses and tells them that the last crystal is with Sherri, who is Jenny's roommate. Jenny? Sherry? Don't worry, bro, we are nearing the final stretch.
Cut to Mummy-Cam! making its way into Sherri's bathroom. How the hell a mummy can get around without being seen is beyond me, but...anyway. In a scene obviously meant to be an homage to the shower scene in "Psycho" (and Mr. Hitchcock, wherever you are, I apologize for using the title of one of your films in any conjunction with this crappy movie), the mummy pulls back the shower curtain as Sherri cowers in the corner of the tub. Fortunately for her, the jeweled necklace is beside the sink, so the mummy politely takes the stone and leaves Sherri in one piece.
As Parker rushes to Sherri's apartment to warn her (and conveniently remove his character from the rest of the film), McCadden snoops around the Reactor Complex. After looking around for about 2 seconds, he discovers the mummy's Star Trek thingee that it's been putting all the little crystals into. You will notice that this thingee is in completely plain view, in fact, is lit up by one of the overhead lights in the ceiling. How nobody could have seen this thing is utterly ludicrous.
Oh brother, in rushes Dean Rossmore, Captain Willoughby, and Rossmore's wormy ass-kisser, Bruce. Somehow, they think they have enough evidence to accuse McCadden of murder (!!) and are going to summon the police. Thankfully, the mummy bursts into the room and makes its way towards the fearful humans.
As the mummy places the last stone into position on the Star Trek thingee, in comes the campus photographer to snap some pictures of the event. I'm not making this up. How in the hell did she know this was happening?! This is one stupid movie. Stupid! The last crystal falls into place and the lights immediately shut off. Why? Who knows. Fortunately, the crystals themselves light up giving us enough illumination to see what's happening. (In case anybody would actually want to see the rest of this movie.)
OK, let's see. The mummy points the gizmo at himself and it is enclosed in a blue halo. After a few seconds the wrappings disappear and we can finally see the alien in its true form. Believe me. The filmmakers should have just let well enough alone. This is not the "big scene" that they had hoped it would be.
As majestic music plays in the background, Bruce orders Captain Willoughby to shoot the alien (!). Running in slow motion and shouting "nooooooooo!", McCadden leaps in front of the gun and takes a bullet to the shoulder, thus saving the alien's life. Oh yes, it gets even worse. Now the alien reaches out and grasps McCadden's hand, and then they both disappear in a flash of blue light.
All that remains of the alien and McCadden is one of those flashing crystals on the floor. Bruce runs over to pick up and has his hand immediately coated in the flesh-eating mold.
No more. That's it. I'm not kidding. You can now exit the theater.
Dennis Grisbeck (Nov 2005)