The Tomb (1986)


Produced & Directed by: Fred Olen Ray

Written by: Kenneth J. Hall

Additional Dialogue and Material by: T.L. Lankford


Richard Allan Hench .... David Manners
Susan Stokey .... Helen
Michelle Bauer .... Nefratis
Cameron Mitchell .... Dr. Howard Phillips
Stu Weltman .... Detective Sullivan
David O'Hara .... John Banning

Special Appearances:

John Carradine .... Mr. Andohebb
Sybil Danning .... Jade

Release Date: Direct-to-Video: October 31, 1986




Grave robbers journey to Egypt and violates an ancient tomb which has never been touched and awakens a legendary vampire like immortal egyptian princess named Nefratis (Michelle Bauer) who unleashes her evil powers to slaughter the robbers there and then travels to Los Angeles to find her stolen artifacts that were sold to different archeologists there. She uses a person named John Banning (David O'Hara) who is associated with one of the archelogists named Dr. Howard Phillips (Cameron Mitchell) and implanmts a beetle type gadget in his heart in order to torture him and to make him do as she pleases in order to find out any information from Phillips. She kills a doctor named Dr. Manners (Jack Frankel). Manners' son David (Richard Allan Hench) finds out about the legend of Nefratis track down Neratis and to put a stop to her evil doings.


A nice beginning to the film showing an egyptian area with a full moon showing the credtis of the Tomb and then daylight accours with a plane flying in the air as well as a jeep following this object in which it looked so adventureous but quite cheesy by what is happening here especially when two people have unfinished business. Then later on a gunfight starts to happen as this looked pretty laughable. This was amazing on their budgeting getting these types of vehicles while shooting this scenario I must say for a low budgeter.
Then the opening credits on the Tomb happens again which seemed a bit odd with a band performing in a nightclub wearing egyptian outfits as this looked funky to watch as well as sometimes the credits looking crefty rolling by and neat stuff like that making this look quite entertaining and not just a typical b-flick where there's little effort when the credits are just typed in and that's it.
Lots of cheesy one liners coming from a bad ass named John and his friend Tyler while doing a deal with Youssef in which this moment was supposed to look mysterious on what their plan is going to be but it doesn't take itself seriously at all.
There's nice moments when they go to a hideout leading to a cave with egyptian coffins in which they have some camels to take them there in which I must say was interesting to have a budget to bring this type of an animal onto the set making this have a good feel for the film and where it's supposed to take place in too.
More cheesy one liners when they discover some treasures and messing with it making you think that something bad is going to happen but yet isn't even close to giving you the chills when this happens. However, there is a nice moment with a creepy looking hand opening an egyptian coffin and then we spot an old looked succubus of some sort which draws in the horror here while about to creep up on Tyler. Then later on John spots Tyler with his back turned and then having his neck bloodied which even offers more interesting horror standards it falls flat when we spot this succubus now as a younger version whom is of course the character Nefratis in which how this was supposed to look creepy on her threatening that she will find him looked too goofy to be scary.
Meanwhile John goes to a bar and spot a stripper with big boobs sinc ethis is a traditional Fred Olen Ray flick after all and then two dorky detectives in sunglasses trying to chase after him out of the bar as this offered me some chuckles since a dog was running with John and helping him outsmart these two idiots which wasn't tough to do. We even spot him running away in a railroad yard and on some box cars too. This will make you chuckle a bit while watching all of this.
We spot a cab parking by at an LAX airport and Nefratis instructs the cabbie to take her to Berverly Hills which is as corny as it gets.
It looks nice, dark and creepy when a camera focuses on some dark staircases leading to a room where John is staying in and Nefratis catching him there along with neat cheesy effects when she creates a bug to implant in his chest so she can control him and make him do whatever she pleases as it makes up for the corny one liners between the two of them.
We spot more annoying one liners coming from a father Dr. Manners towards his son David about him womanising and his plans for the evening when he is heading out the door. HO HUM! Yet, it's a bit impressive when Nefratis is in the dark near a tree spying on someone without being spot as well as her feet slowly walking towards her victim and then showing some electric energy while she takes the life of Manners as well as exposing her fangs too.
There's some good liners with David discussing towards people like Dr. Howard Phillips, Helen or even a historian like Mr. Andohebb who killed his father as well as the legend of Nefratis seeking revenge which seems to work well for any horror film of this kind. It's neat to hear on Nefratis and why she is doing all of this.
Nefratis is in a bar as there's a lesbian moment here in which she gives someone there the eye hinting for them to have sex in a room which seemed to work well in which you have a bad feeling that she is going to fall into a death trap which looked fairly impressive on what this trap will be.
Plus there's even a suggested romatnic moments between David and Helen with them doing things together while going on their search for Nefratis as this seemed to work in well too.
There's a nice effect with Nefratis walking near a door way with a blue light shining on her while approaching Howard Phillips giving it that dark horror feel as well as him trying to use a crucifix that doesn't work on her since there's a nice pointer here not making it your typical vampiress/succubus being prevented by something like that. There's awesome red lighting shock effects she unleashes on to him as this looked entertaining to watch. So there's many good pointers for this scene.
There's a nice slow motion sequence with Nefratis slowly approaching Helen while she's sitting down while people are dancing around her at the club which seems to look good and traditional for a horror film with someone approaching their victim in something you'd see in Fright Night but this looked a bit cheesy yet in a fun way.
The best scene is when Nefratis does a ceremony and doing a chant which seemed to try too hard to be serious but fails and by having Helen for a sacrifice in which the settings looked cool with torches lit up and she unleashes her powers to anyone who gets in the way by making them vanish as well as moments when she ends up being burned herself and perishes which has the best effects ever in which Ray deserves a pat on the back by exposing all of this in which this adds to alot of adventure for a cheesy horror flick like this one.
Bottom line is that this was a stale film but one of Fred Olen Ray's better flicks. Neat special effects but the story can be tiresome at times. It's fun to watch if you're in the mood for it and watching it for a laught as there's nothing scary about it even when it tries to be that the storylines were pretty corny.

The acting is very poor and below average. Lead actor Richard Allan Hench (David Manners) has the right guy next door looks for the role but his acting looked incredibly stale and seemed to be just a line reader trying his best to get into character yet he fails in order to do so. He definetely needed some acting lessons and possibly could improve if he did so. I just couldn't see him being much good into what he does for the poor story here. Sorry no points for him.
Susan Stokey (Helen) however showed a good outgoing type of personality and seemed to be a bit better yet at times she was a bit over the top and a little too hyperactive with her line speaking. Yet she seemed to show some decent but average energy into what she did here. I can see her improving the more she gets work in other low budget projects working pretty much in all but 1 Fred Olen Ray flick in which alot were horror films so she made herself useful.
This film was a first start for scream queen Michelle Bauer (Nefratis) leap for more trashy and exploited horror flicks in which her voice was overdubbed and sounded bad. Sometimes she came across a bit vicious as a succubus but there were times she seemed to try too hard and seemed a little silly for what she did in alot of spots. She seemed to look energetic at times such as a moment when she seems to act good and smooth towards one of the actors by slowly approaching him as well as pushing him down which worked well but yet I never found her to be a great actress in general often acting over the top. There's a nice moment though with her slowly approaching another actor and she shows a decent vicious attitude towards him. Also another situation she squeezes someone's hand didn't look rough at all like it was supposed to be as she was poor with her blocking here. Yet in another situation makes up for some of this while thrusting herself towards someone which looked a little powerful.
Cult legend Cameron Mitchell (Dr. Howard Phillips) seems to be so far the best actor in the whole cast coming across with a good serious and gruff speaking in his voice as he has had years of experience in the acting industry which shows a bit here. Sometimes even he is a bit off but yet works hard trying to pick it up again and most of the times can do the trick. He seems to be on target with what he does but seems to struggle doing his performance here.
Stu Weltman (Detective Sullivan) seemed to show off a nice wise elderly type detective role and studied this part fairly well and was good and clear with his speaking in which he's another fine actor here. He had the perfect looks for this part too and can seem to show off some nice energy into his role like showing energy while getting into a heavy discussion towards somebody else that he's talking to. He seems to come across nicely onto the camera with all of this.
David O'Hara (John Banning) was by far one of the worst actors in the film who really couldn't act his way out of a wet paper bag. He was incredibly rough with his intense anger and was very mellodramatic with his bad ass attitude along with poorly reacting violent which looked humiliating, sloppy and too planned out. There's a moment when he yells in pain it looks incredibly rough and way too acted out not getting to the intensity here at all. I was thinking to myself how the hell did he get this job?! The only thing that was going for him was his looks but that's about it. He's very low key and lacks of energy too. Another no pointer for this dude as he seemed to act like a total idiot.
John Carradine (Mr. Andohebb) seemed to come across effectively even if his part is less than 5 minutes long showing a nice wise man which a knowledgeable attitude. Seems very good and clear getting into detail on what he says. He does a good job with his nervous reactions while pointing a small cricifix towards herHe shows a nice versatality here since I've often seen him playing a crazy or obnoxious types in other films. I was quite impressed with him coming off as someone who is quite mellow here.
Sybil Danning (Jade) was another one who only appeared in the beginning of this flick for about 4 minutes or so. She comes across quite powerfully with her no bullshit attitude and acted not too bad by acting tough. Definetely had the motive to play one of those rebellious action girl types. It was a treat to see her perform and giving the film a bit of a boot with all of this. However there's a moment with her blocking when she knees someone in the groin as it looked a bit too acted out and unnatural.

There is a women stripper in a bar performed by porn actress Kitten Natifidad is dressed as an officer with large breasts exposing along with her big butt
A lesbian in a bar who is about to seduce Nefratis (Played by Dawn Wildsmith) shows off her breasts by taking it off. Michelle Bauer surprisingly doesn't take any of her clothes off but wears a top that is almost see throughable in which we can spot her breast nipples.

A graverobbers head is cut off.
A persons neck is bloodily bitten.
There's gruesome scenes but not as gory.

The music composed by David Neumann is actually quite impressive with his synthesizer music for a low budgeter like this one. He has some interesting cheesy adventureous sounds from the beginning of the movie which seems to work in well with the action that's about to happen. It almost sounds like a cheesy version you'd hear in an 80's TV show like Miami Vice. Also there's more nice sounds for when a group of people go to hunt for an egyptian with good beats to it. Plus some good low sounds having a half good horror feel when we spot Nefratis' feet slowly creeping up to her next victim. Lots of great drum poundings and cold energetic sounds during the ceremony scene too which was my favourite of the compositions here.
There's also a cheesy soundtrack with bands including a group called the Rhythm Kings for the opening credtis on an oldie titled "Tutti Frutti" in which there's great rhythm and soul coming from the vocalising here and performed at a dance bar. Seems to give the film a nice start with this song.
Another nice memorable song is "Danger Boy" by Jeffrey Walton with his hyped vocalising and electronice keyboard music that was used in a dance club scene when Nefratis slowly creeps towards Helen in which this seems to work in well for that moment in a cheesy fashion but yet the film was cheesy itself in general. Plus this track was used on the closing credits. It almost sounds like an influential to other 80's pop bands like Devo or Duran Duran. He performed other songs for this movie which seems to stick out okay but this was the most effective song.

Dr. Howard Phillips: The more things change... The more they stay the same

Officer Ullman: Freeze lady!!!!
Nefratis: Who the hell are you???