An unusual entry in Iverson Movie Ranch lore is the 1986 movie "The Tomb," directed by Fred Olen Ray with a cast that includes Cameron Mitchell, John Carradine and Sybil Danning. The plot involves the theft of artifacts from an unmarked Egyptian grave — which turns out to be located on the Upper Iverson — and the revenge sought by the ancient Egyptian woman whose tomb it was. It's apparently based on a Bram Stoker novel, "The Jewel of Seven Stars."
here.) What's interesting to me about "The Tomb" is that 1986 was almost two decades after Iverson stopped being a working movie ranch, and only a few productions were filmed there around this time. The movie includes just one short sequence at Iverson, but it's important footage — and it includes the appealing sight of cast members tromping around the South Rim of the Upper Iverson with a couple of camels.
This shot from "The Tomb" is probably one of the last overviews of a portion of the Upper Iverson to appear in the movies. The shot looks north toward Oat Mountain (in the distant background, toward the right), with some of the rocks of the South Rim in the foreground. The photo below shows what this area looks like today.
Here's a view of approximately the same portion of the Upper Iverson in more recent times, from a 2009 visit, showing a number of the estates that have been built on the former movie ranch property. Construction has slowed considerably in recent years, but still continues. In many cases the landmark rocks seen in the movies and TV shows have been removed to make way for houses, and in other cases they remain preserved, in a way, as part of the landscape — often in driveways and back yards. Still others survive in hiking areas around the fringes of the developed land.
As the two American adventurers and their Egyptian guide close in on the hidden tomb, they hike below an instantly recognizable rock I call Moschops, which I've talked about in a previous post. In the shot above, Moschops is the pointed rock in the background, above and to the right of the guide. Moschops is still in place on the South Rim, and this shot turned out to be helpful in my own search for the tomb.
Sort of an amusing coda to the quest for the tomb is that once the boys got inside they found a huge hidden chamber, complete with plenty of treasure and smooth, carefully built walls — not at all what one would suspect from the outside!