The codex-style books (pages, covers, and binding) were not invented until the Roman Empire. Ancient Egyptians used scrolls. Therefore, the Book of the Dead and the Book of Amun-Ra should not look like modern books at all.
After being hanged and prior to boarding the boat, Rick is explaining to Evelyn about his troop believing in the city so much they marched across Libya. The movie is based in 1923 and the country was not referred to as Libya until 1934.
When the scarabs are poured over Imhotep, they appear to begin devouring him gradually, a fact which Evelyn later confirms, stating that the beetles devoured a corpse "very slowly." However, whenever the scarabs devour anyone else later on in the film, they do so almost instantaneously.
Evelyn says in the movie that they take out all your organs during mummification, including your heart. It is believed that the Egyptians left the heart in the body because it was the seat of intelligence and feelings.
While Ardeth, Rick and Jonathan are trying to dig through a cave-in, Jonathan's accent suddenly switches from English to Scottish when he says "Come on, put your backs into it!", then it returns to English for the remainder of the movie.
When Evie is on the ladder, she's holding a book that she tries to put on the adjacent bookcase. When she drops the book, there is no sound of the book landing and, when she leans over and the ladder is supporting itself, the book is nowhere to be seen.
When they all return to Hamunaptra for the final scene, they arrive via airplane and Imhotep's cyclone. Yet, when Bennie takes the gold and the four heroes escape, there is a herd of saddled camels just outside, Where did they come from? How did they get there?
When Jonathon is attacked by the scarab, Rick rips his shirt sleeve open to cut it out of him.
In all subsequent shots, Jonathon's shirt is intact. And the bandage he is wearing on his arm bears no relation to the wounds received in the incident.
When Rick and Jonathan are trying to recover the Book of Amun-Ra from the statue of Horus, holes suddenly appear in the floor of the chamber without explanation. Originally, a deleted scene had several more mummies bursting through the ground and attacking them, before being killed by the salt acid booby-trap in the statue; the sequence was cut but the holes they emerged from can still be seen in some shots.
When Beni is looking for the black book in the office, he gets caught by O'Connell. When they are standing under the fan, you hear the scream of the Egyptologist. They all look toward the camera but when Beni runs out the window behind them, the Egyptologist is there.
Near the end of the film, in the final fight scene between Imhotep and Rick, Imhotep grabs Rick and opens his huge mouth but, on the shot after, Evelyn starts reading the spell to make Imhotep mortal and his mouth is open regularly.
As the two parties begin their race to Hamunaptra, Rick and Beni are in the lead. Beni begins hitting Rick with his whip and is pulled from his camel and thrown to the desert floor by Rick. As Beni stands up, we see the others on their horses coming up behind. The scene then changes to a wide shot and the standing Beni is nowhere to be seen.
When Rick, Evie, Jonathan and the Warden are beginning their first exploration, Rick pulls a gun out of his left holster when Evie informs him of where they stand is the preparation room for "the after life". When they are in the hallway and hear the bugs around them, Rick is holding a gun in his left hand and the gun he had drawn before was back in the holster.
In one of the Hamunaptra scenes, when Dr. Allen Chamberlain shouts at the workers who then die by pressurized acid, Chamberlain wears glasses in the first 'yelling' shot, then in the close-ups, he doesn't.
When Imhotep is trying to resurrect Anak-sun-amun in the beginning of the film, she is shown gasping for air as her spirit re-enters her body. Then, in a wider shot, she has collapsed (as if it is not in her body) even though you can still hear her. In the next close up, she is gasping for air and screaming again before her spirit leaves her for good and she collapses.
When Jonathan goes to start the yellow car, the car is facing away from the direction that they need to go. Within a split second as everyone else is running to get in the car, the car has turned around in the opposite direction. There wasn't enough time to turn the car around between the time that he started the car until the time that everyone else got in.
When Evie steals the Book of the Dead from the Egyptologist, his left arm is around the book and his right arm is around a canopic jar. When he awakes, after Evie has read from the book, the jar is still cradled in his right arm as he sits up, but in the very next shot it is in his left arm with no time at all for him to have moved it there.
When the Egyptologist is running through the streets of Cairo, he is wearing the same outfit that he wore before in the film: a light colored suit, black vest, black patterned tie, gray scarf, and a fez. In the beginning of the film, his fez had a tassel, but when he runs, the tassel is gone. When the mummy kills the Egyptologist and the crowd is around the body, however, the Egyptologist's body has no scarf, tie, vest, or shoes; they are all surrounding the Egyptologist's corpse. The fez is still on his head and has a tassel on it.
When Imhotep kills the last of the Americans, Beni has a considerable amount of stubble on his face and a thicker mustache. When Imhotep corners the rest of the group after they crash the car, Beni has much less stubble and a more defined mustache.
When Evey is talking to Rick by the campfire, since she's drunk, she tries to kiss him. The angle at which she's leaning changes multiple times. First, she leans to her right, then a different angle shows her leaning the opposite way. These shots alternate until the moment she passes out.
When Rick, Evelyn, Jonathan, and the Americans come across Ardeth Bay and the curator in the museum, Rick, Jonathan, and the Americans draw their guns. When the camera switches to the curator greeting them, Jonathan's hands come into screen as he draws his gun a second time.
When the Americans and the British are racing to the City of the Dead, the sun is behind the city. Their shadow goes off to the left, meaning that the sun is to the right of them. If they were racing towards the city their shadow should be behind them.
When Rick, Jonathan, Winston and the Americans are sitting at the bar in Fort Brydon (after the introduction of Winston), you can see 1st Assistant Director Cliff Lanning with his script in hand on the very left side of the screen.
In the opening scene where Rick & Beni are crouching behind the wall with their buddies ready to shoot the approaching armed horsemen and the camera is panning along the side of the galloping horsemen. In the background is a quite visible camera stand and two camera operators shooting the scene from another angle.
After she finishes rearranging the bookshelves, Evelyn enters a dark chamber of the museum alone. As she turns to grab a torch, a red flash of light is seen on a door to her left. Possibly a laser (such as a cinematic tape measure) or simply a reflected light by the crew. The light flash does not appear to be related to her movement.
In the opening shot of Thebes, pyramids are visible, but there were no pyramids built around Thebes. You can also see a small version of a Sphinx in front of the pyramids, making the whole set look like Giza, in Cairo.
The ancient Egyptians believed that there was a strong link between death and the compass direction west (where the sun "died" every evening). The fact that the adventurers see the sun rising over Hamunaptra as they approach it suggests that they have been traveling eastwards from the Nile, but if the ancient Egyptians had built a "City of the Dead" they would never have built it on the eastern side of the Nile.
Both times, when the Arab horsemen are attacking Hamunaptra, the sound of ululation is heard. In the Middle East, this sound is traditionally made by women, and during times of celebration or grieving. It wouldn't be made by attacking men on horseback.
Imhotep fears cats because "cats are the guardians of the Underworld". In Egyptian mythology, cats were associated with the goddesses Bastet (fertility, motherhood and protection) and Sekhmet (healing) and not the Underworld.
When Dr. Allen Chamberlain is reading the mummy's curse in hieroglyphs, he is in fact reading them the wrong way. The way the hieroglyphs were facing, they were meant to be read right-to-left. Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs can be read right-to-left, left-to-right, or up-to-down.
At the beginning of the movie when the horsemen are about to shoot O'Connell, all of the horsemen are holding bolt-action rifles with one hand as they get ready to shoot and you hear all of the rifles being cocked even though it takes two hands to cock a bolt-action rifle.
When Evelyn and Rick climb down into the vault under the statue, Evelyn uses mirrors to illuminate the chamber. You see the light passing from one mirror to the next. The speed of light is way too fast to be tracked like that.
There are five canopic jars pictured in the chest. However, only four canopic jars were ever used during mummification. The heart was left in the body. Therefore, it would not have had a corresponding canopic jar.
This movie, as well as the sequel, feature fast moving, flesh eating scarabs, most notably as part of Imhotep's punishment. The species of scarabs worshiped in ancient Egypt is the Scarabaeus Sacer, a type of dung beetle. It's quite slow and, while its bite can be painful, it is not carnivorous and cannot pierce the skin let alone burrow under the skin.
Imhotep speaks Hebrew very poorly: first, he mispronounces the words (using the consonant "w" instead of "v"); second, he makes severe grammar errors: he tells Beni "ulai uchal lehishtamesh bach" (= I may have use for you), but the word "bach" is used for female; he should have said "becha".
When the biplane flown by Bernard Fox's character Wilson crashes, it begins to sink into what is called by O'Connell as "quicksand." Quicksand is a very viscous fluid mixture of soil and water. They're in the desert; there is no water, and no quicksand.
In the battle with the guards Rick picks up a bronze sword.and in combat sparks literally fly. Bronze weapons cannot produce sparks .Rick also uses the sword to cut the iron chain holding Evelyn. Bronze cannot cut iron and iron would not be available to Imhotep as ancient Egypt had only copper or bronze.
When Imhotep realizes Beni is speaking "the language of the slaves", he speaks one or two sentences in Hebrew, then switches back to ancient Egyptian, but Beni still understands him. Apparently, Beni does know ancient Egyptian (given his occupation it shouldn't come as a surprise), even though not so well, which becomes apparent when Evelyn starts correcting him. So, there is no reason for Imhotep to continue to speak Hebrew.
Anck-su-namun is not wrapped in bandages upon her death, yet when Imhotep attempts to restore her soul a second time, her desiccated corpse is shown with tattered bandages hanging from her body.
Of course, she was wrapped in bandages upon her death. Imhotep would have unwrapped her body in preparation for her resurrection. Once Imhotep was captured and executed, she was re-wrapped and her body re-interred.
The ancient Egyptians believed that there was a strong link between death and the west (where the sun "died" every evening). If they had built a "City of the Dead" it would not have been on the eastern side of the Nile. However, the movie never claims otherwise. The fact that the adventurers see the sun rising over Hamunaptra does mean that they approached it from the west, but it doesn't mean that they have been traveling eastward from the Nile. Apparently they circled around to the western side of Hamunaptra, so that the rising sun could show them the way. This would also explain why both parties approached the lookout point from the opposite directions (they circled the city differently).
Notice the gunshot-wound that one the Americans of O'Connell's entourage has in the car-chase sequence when he is unsuccessfully fighting off Imhotep's followers in the village. He got shot in a scene which was filmed but not shown. (Source: director's commentary on DVD-release)
The heroes use the star "key" to open three locks. Jonathan opens the sarcophagus by turning the key counterclockwise and Evelyn turns it clockwise to open the Book of the Dead and the Book of Amon-Ra. Although this inconsistency may seem strange, apparently, that's how the locks work. It may also seem strange that the characters always turn the key the right way on the first try even though they're not familiar with the locks. However, a closer look reveals that they do try to turn the key the wrong way and, after realizing that it doesn't work, change the direction. This is especially evident in the second case. Besides, there is always a 50 percent chance of guessing the right way on the first try.
Pharaoh's guards lock Imhotep in the sarcophagus by turning the knob to the left. Later, when Jonathan, Evelyn and Rick are opening the sarcophagus, they also turn the knob to the left. Apparently that's how the locking mechanism works.
When Evie and Rick are running from the flaming balls falling from the sky in the courtyard of the fort, the light is too bright for an overcast day (which we can see that it is from the shots of the sky).
When Imhotep has "assimilated the organs and fluid" of the blonde, American cowboy, Mr. Henderson, and the bug crawls up Imhotep's face, you can see the edges of the appliance used to create the CG holes in his skin.
When the bookcases collapse near the beginning of the film, you can see that the bookcases farthest from the camera are hollow boxes covered with fabric upon which books have been painted. The fabric ripples with each impact.
Soon after the main characters pick up their camels, there is a left to right panning shot of them riding in the desert. At least five dust marks on the camera lens are revealed as pale shadows against the sand.
When the Americans fighting the Medjai on the boat are shown from the side, one can clearly see that one of the 'cowboys' cocks his revolver and pulls the trigger several times but the gun does not fire.
A lot of the sound effects are reused constantly. For example, in the beginning, before Rick O'Connell (Brendan Fraser) runs away from the attackers, he pulls out two twin revolvers. He'll run out of ammunition and pull out twin FN Model 1903 pistols. Being different guns, they should have different sound effects.
After O'Connell is saved from being hanged, they all prepare to board the boat and Evelyn is shocked to see how cleaned up he is. However, despite being quite brutally hanged by a rope only hours before, there are no visible bruises on O'Connell's neck.
Near the very end of the movie (just after Imhotep becomes mortal again), O'Connell runs Imhotep through with a very large sword. Imhotep's hands are placed over the wound, then taken away. As he looks at his hands, he sees blood, and the blood has run through his fingers to the backs of his hands. When he places his hands over the wound again, there is no blood visible on the backs of his hands or on his body.
Imhotep takes Burns' (the American man with eyeglasses) eyes when he begins to become human again. While Burns is very near-sighted, it's been established that Imhotep doesn't receive the actual organ he steals (if he did, he'd appear to be even more of a patchwork creation). In the novel of the film and script, however, it's been stated that Burns, having poor eyesight, gave his faulty vision to the mummy when his eyes were taken. The concept was furthered in the script when Imhotep uses a pair of spare eyeglasses to fully see Burns and kill him.