By Jose Jara
“Tom Cruise fails to resurrect this monster classic”
By: Daniel Guzman
I told my mom I was going to see The Mummy and my mother immediately invited herself as my plus one. She’s never that forward about going to see a film, so I was eager to take her and see what her reaction would be. Let me give you my mom’s review first. Quoting my 70-year-old mother verbatim,” I thought the mummy would have more bandages around her, and I thought this would be scary.” There you have it ladies and gentlemen! Our seniors have spoken and found The Mummy a little dull for their classical taste!
First off, do not fall prey to watching this film in 3-D, which I found added no additional excitement to this Dark Universe introduction. I was expecting this film to blow Brendan Fraser’s Mummy out of the sand, especially given the advances in CGI since the last version. The last film also starred a less versatile actor like Brendan Fraser whose performance is more of a classic hero with loads of physical comedy. Yet I found myself by the end of this film appreciative of Brendan Fraser’s acting compared to Tom Cruise’s wooden character in this new rendition.
Quick synopsis for you guys: a gold seeking soldier played by Tom Cruise accidentally stumbles onto the tomb, or shall we say prison, of Ahmanet the daughter of a pharaoh, who was buried alive for her heinous acts against her own family. This ancient Egyptian Princess, played by Sofia Boutella, is set free by the actions of Tom Cruise’s character, Nick Morton, and by an artifacts archeologist named Jenny Halsey, played by Annabelle Wallis (Peaky Blinders). Once Ahmanet is set free, she is quick to pick up where she left off, which was attaining evil powers from dark magic in order to become all powerful, but she must find a host body for the demon that granted her this power, and she has her “4 pupils” set on that being Tom Cruise.
This movie feels like regurgitated action scenes from Tom Cruise’s other franchise, Mission Impossible. I found myself reminiscing of a time I saw Ethan Hunt, Tom Cruise’s character in Mission Impossible, running away from a sand storm, just as I saw his character doing the same thing in The Mummy. I also thought about Ethan Hunt’s daring theatrics while holding on for dear life to the outside door handle of a military plane, just as I saw Tom’s character in The Mummy bouncing off the walls of a military plane in a zero-gravity action scene in this film. Don’t get me wrong, these scenes are well executed, but this reborn monster franchise needed something innovative and new, not an aging A-list star’s best old moves. The hardest thing to put up with in this film wasn’t the same old moves by Tom Cruise, but instead, how hard it was to make Tom Cruise be funny. Tom is a great actor when it comes to drama and action, but comedy is one tool he does not have in his box. Neither do the writers of this film. Actor Jake Johnson, who plays Tom Cruises sidekick of the story, was obviously cast for his comedic talent, but even he can’t make someone chuckle with bad comedic punchlines. I thought Fraser’s Mummy film had some cheesy comedy shticks, but those were comedic genius compared to these cringe worthy attempts at laughter.
The film attempts to ramp up the future monster stories to come. Russell Crowe shows us a sneak peek at his monster Mr. Hyde as he plays the role of Dr. Henry Jekyll. Future monsters to come in this Dark Universe franchise will be Johnny Depp as The Invisible Man and Javier Bardem as Frankenstein. These A-list aging actors who are not partakers of this superhero era might be making the right moves for their careers, but I think given the result of this first attempt, I would forgo this botched experiment. The rest of those films might be better off with some new blood, or resting in peace.