Movie Review: Curse at The Mummy (Round 2)
Let's not mince words. The Mummy is shockingly bad. A strong contender for worst film of the year. A film that could inspire new expletives.
Even the usually reliable Tom Cruise can't save it. For my initial thoughts on this waste of time, there is a longer review here.
But I have changed my tune on one aspect and have formulated a theory. The Mummy might not be an inept mess - it could be a deliberate mess.
They must have looked at films such as Transformers - nicely filmed and poorly plotted but did amazingly well at the global box office - and thought "bingo!".
Not too surprising, given that director Kurtzman wrote some of that franchise.
As the United States market drops in significance, The Mummy feels like it is designed to play anywhere. So, while Cruise is too old and is clearly not suited to his role, globally, he gets bums on seats.
Then add a veneer of smarts that given a little thought makes no sense; such as why build an elaborate burial chamber for the ultimate evil, but include an easy-to-use retrieval system? Or the unnecessarily forced countdown of Dr Jekyll’s serum delivery.
The movie can't settle on a tone because it doesn't need to. Moving from one anodyne action scene to the next is more important.
Characters matter so little they spout no more than exposition. This is to the extent that you will know what they are meant to be doing but probably not remember their names.
Add a whiff or two of nostalgia-triggering references from past films - like the undead wise-cracking pal riff from An American Werewolf In London or the face in the sand from the previous Mummy franchise - and you have a film that audiences around the world can watch without having to worry about thinking or feeling.
A cynical theory? Possibly. But given how much of a joyless slog this is, would the makers want to be seen as inept or calculating?
STARRING: Tom Cruise, Sofia Boutella, Jake Johnson, Annabelle Wallis, Russell Crowe
DIRECTOR: Alex Kurtzman
THE SKINNY: A cursed ancient Egyptian princess (Boutella) is awakened from her tomb and tries to use Nick Morton's (Cruise) body as a vessel to bring the ultimate evil into the world. To do this, she must find a dagger located in London.
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