Movie Review: The Mummy

By | June 30, 2017

Can a movie sometimes benefit from bad expectations? Absolutely, because I was told this movie was so bad that when it did something right—and it does in a few scenes—it almost made me feel I was watching a good movie. But really I wasn’t…

What Works: There are a handful of standout sequences, but except for a spectacular airplane crash, most of them set in Egypt or Iraq since the movie’s pace slows dramatically when it enters London. But the movie’s biggest draw is the title character. Even if anyone doubted it after watching “The Kingsman” (and I didn’t), Sofia Boutella is a star. Her mummy character is near-wordless, but the affect of just her dark eyes framed by “Egyptian” bangs does wonders. She’s so appealing that you wonder why Tom Cruise’s “rogue explorer” (who never does a single thing that bad) isn’t more tempted by her offer…

What Doesn’t: The movie is less of a goofy “Indian Jones”-style knockoff unlike the Godawful Brendan Frasier-“Mummy” movies—which some critics have mistakenly said are superior to this—and more of a heart-of-darkness exploration that finds Cruise being offered a chance to live as a Godly embodiment of evil. But Cruise the actor doesn’t seem even remotely interested in this option, or doing any interior work. He’s all running, shouting, fighting, shooting, and it’s a mistake to put such a pure action hero in something that was supposed to have psychological tension beneath the surface. It’s also another terrible case of an anti-Interracial couple movie—sigh—as Cruise’s white hero is literally running from an African she-devil to embrace the blonde, “wholesome” Annabelle Wallis.

What I Would Have Done Differently: Will a “Mummy” movie ever work? Maybe, but I wouldn’t try again for a couple decades.

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