Curcumin, found in the rhizome of turmeric, has extensive therapeutic promises via its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antiproliferative properties. Preclinical in vitro and in vivo data have shown curcumin to be an effective treatment for multiple cancers. These effects are drived by curcumin's ability to induce G2/M cell cycle arrest, induction of autophagy, activation of apoptotic pathways, disruption of molecular signaling, inhibition of invasion and metastasis, and by increasing the efficacy of existing chemotherapeutics. Here we focused on the hormetic behaviour of curcumin. Frequently, low doses of toxins and other stressors not only are harmless but also activate an adaptive stress whereas high dose activates acute responses like autophagy and cell death. This phenomenon is referred to as hormesis. Many molecules that cause cell death elicite an initial autophagic step that is a cytoprotective mechanism relying on elimination of dysfunctional structures intracellular, notably by mitophagy. This phenomenon is considered as a primarily protective mechanism against stressors. At higher doses, cells undergo mitochondrial outer membrane permeabilization due to calcium release from the endoplasmic reticulum and die. Herein, we address the complex crosstalk between the induced mitochondrial biogenesis, mitochondrial destabilization accompanied by mitophagy and cell death that can also be at play.