Review: ‘Sphinx’

This film is an embarrassment. Contempo Perils of Pauline sees earnest, dedicated Egyptologist Lesley-Anne Down through countless situations of dire jeopardy as she travels from Cairo to Luxor's Valley of the Kings in pursuit of a mysterious tomb of riches, which also holds great interest for black marketeers.

This film is an embarrassment. Contempo Perils of Pauline sees earnest, dedicated Egyptologist Lesley-Anne Down through countless situations of dire jeopardy as she travels from Cairo to Luxor’s Valley of the Kings in pursuit of a mysterious tomb of riches, which also holds great interest for black marketeers.

Along the way, lovely Lesley-Anne is almost murdered after witnessing John Gielgud’s demise, caught off guard not once, not twice, but three times in her hotel room, shot at as a matter of course, nearly raped by a prison guard, held at knifepoint, thrown into a dark dungeon inhabited by decomposed corpses, attacked by bats, chased by a car, shot at again and finally nearly buried as the tomb’s ceiling comes crashing down.

In all, she screams, gasps and exclaims ‘My God!’ more often than any heroine since Jamie Lee Curtis in her collected horror films.

Franklin J. Schaffner’s steady and sober style is helpless in the face of the mounting implausibilities.

Sphinx

Production

Orion. Director Franklin J. Schaffner; Producer Stanley O'Toole; Screenplay John Byrum; Camera Ernest Day; Editor Robert E. Swink, Michael F. Anderson; Music Michael J. Lewis; Art Director Terence Marsh

Crew

(Color) Widescreen. Available on VHS. Extract of a review from 1981. Running time: 117 MIN.

With

Lesley-Anne Down Frank Langella Maurice Ronet John Gielgud Saeed Jaffrey John Rhys-Davies
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