This week we went out to see The Mummy, a new film to be part of the Dark Universe movie series with Universal Studios looking to bring all their classic monsters back to the big screen.
The Mummy, personally I would have thought would have been done later on in the series when it was more established, given that for most, this was the Universal monster known to most thanks to the Brendan Fraser fronted trilogy which ran from 1999 ending in 2008 with Tomb of the Dragon Emperor.
The film seemed ready to be a target for some due to the unpopularity of Tom Cruise, which we still do not get but we went into it with high hopes, possibly due to our love of the 1999 version so much.
The film opens with the discovery of a Knights tomb in London, then jumps to Iraq, where we follow soldiers, Nick Morton (Tom Cruise) and his partner Chris (Jake Johnson) who in the middle of an airstrike discover the ancient tomb of Ahmanet (Sofia Boutella) who was mummified for selling her soul to the God, Set.
Ahmanet murdered her family with a special dagger which when used can give Set a physical form. We learn that the dagger was dismantled by a ruby which operates it by the Crusaders found at the start of the movie.
It is agreed that Nick and Chris will remove the sarcophagus that Ahmanet is kept in and return it to England with Jenny (Annabelle Wallis) an archaeologist and former lover of Nick!
During the flight, Chris is bitten by a spider and becomes possessed, killing his Colonel (Courtney B. Vance) and forcing Nick to shoot him, the plane is then hit by a huge wave of crows causing it to crash, where only Jenny appears to survive.
Nick awakes in the morgue and learns from a ghost of Vail that he has been cursed by Ahmanet, who seeks him as a vessel for the God she once again wishes to raise.
During this time, Ahmanet has escaped from her sarcophagus following the plane crash and feeds on the rescue workers, which regenerates her decomposing body and turns them into her Zombie soldiers.
She has also managed to lure Nick to her, along with Jenny, and just when it looks like she will get his body to resurrect her god, they are stopped by soldiers led by Dr. Henry Jekyll (Russell Crowe) who are a group known as Prodigium, a society that will defend against supernatural threats.
Their base is located under the Natural HistoryMuseumm of London and includes artefacts such as The book of Amun-Ra, a nice connection to the 1995 film, as well as vampire skulls and the Creature’s webbed hand.
However, despite the force of Prodigium, Ahmanet still manages to escape, during commotion caused by when Jekyll becomes Hyde. She also manages to get the ruby to complete the dagger leaving a final showdown between her and Nick.
We found this film incredibly disappointing, it is a real mess, the references to the dark universe at times feel forced in, the storyline is not that brilliant, attempts at humour fail, for example, in fights Nick punches through Zombie heads, which the 1995 version did in a way that seemed to be fun, here we are not sure if they are doing the same thing or if it is supposed to make it dark, which it never really was, despite its 15 certificate!
Jake, who we love in New Girl is criminally underused, they seem to be trying to make his cursed ghost character like Griffin Dunne’s American Werewolf in London character but fail.
Crowe is good as Jekyll but when Hyde seems to turn into some sort of cockney. Wallis so good in TV’s Peaky Blinders is nothing more than the damsel in distress here.
Sofia does well with her mummy role and Tom does the best he can, with great stunts and of course some running but only the film set pieces, the plane crash, in particular, save this from being awful, it had so much promise but this really is just an above average blockbuster, held back by an awful script despite having 6 writers involved.
We hope the next instalment of the Dark Universe delivers or else this is a franchise that could fail spectacularly, which for us would be a shame as we would much rather see monster movies than comic book films.
You can find the trailer here
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