Curse of the Faceless Man (1958)

Article #350 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing date: 3-2-2002
Posting date: 7-17-2002

A stone-covered body is discovered in the ruins of Pompeii which turn out to be the remains of Quintilus Aurelius. However, the body is not dead, and returns to life to commit murder.

Though he’s covered with stone, it might as well be bandages, as this is really nothing but a mummy movie when you get down to it. Not a good one, either; like the title character, it’s dull and slow-moving. The dialogue started driving me crazy early on; it seems as if almost a quarter of the lines are on the order of “I’m sorry, but it’s been scientifically proven that dead men from two thousand years ago don’t stand up and walk around.” (Not an actual quote from the movie, but it might as well be.) And like too many mummy movies where the monster could be easily outrun, characters have to make immensely stupid decisions like standing stock still when the faceless man is coming at them, or running into a dead end where they can be cornered; I never find this kind of thing effective. It’s directed by Edward L. Cahn, written by Jerome Bixby, and stars Richard Anderson; all three have done monementally better work elsewhere. This one is a waste of time.

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