Sunday, 11 June 2017

#49 THE MUMMY


Starring TOM CRUISE, Annabelle Wallis, Sofia Boutella, Jake Johnson, Courtney B. Vance and Russell Crowe. Screenplay by David Koepp, Christopher McQuarrie and Dylan Kussman. Based on story by Jon Spaihts, Alex Kurtzman and Jenny Lumet. Directed by Alex Kurtzman. Running time 107 minutes (minutes TOM CRUISE spends running in this film 100). Budget $125 million. Certificate 15.

An utterly unnecessary remake of the vastly superior Brendan Fraser 1999 effort starring Hollywood's fastest 100 metre sprinter,  TOM CRUISE. Directed by Alex Kurtzman, a director with just one previous movie to his name and that was a romantic comedy plus a clutch of writing credits including Hawaii Five-O, Fringe and Star Shit: Into Drek, so what could possibly go wrong?

Well, in a word, THIS.

First off, welcome to the Dark Universe, Universal's attempt to kick start a brand new franchise based on very old legendary back catalogue of classic movie monsters that include Count Dracula, Frankenstein's Monster, The Werewolf, The Invisible Man, The Creature From the Black Lagoon and of course The Mummy. Because, as I'm sure Universal must have reasoned, if Marvel and DC can have a universe, why can't we?

From the word go, you know somethings off with this film, with not one but two ancient-history prologues, one that features a secret Knights Templar funeral and a mysterious blood red ruby during the second Crusades and the other set in Ancient Egypt, which quickly gets our villainess, Princess Ahmanet (Sofia Boutella) and a dagger with a mysterious blood red ruby up to no good and running before burying her alive in a mercury filled sarcophagus hundreds of feet underground for all eternity.

That is until 5,000 years later when Nick Morton (TOM CRUISE) and his sidekick Chris Vail (Jake Johnson) a pair of fast running, freelance treasure-stealing marines accidentally rediscovers her tomb leading to the transportation of said Sarcophagus to a mysterious secure location hidden deep beneath the Natural History Museum in London run by a certain Dr. Jekyll (Russell Crowe). That is until half way into the flight when Mick, Chris and Jenny Halset (Annabel Wallis) Mick's one-night stand and leading Egyptologist, suffer a catastrophic plane crash, which Ahmanet stages with the aid of a mass Murder of black crows. And before you can say, this all seems oddly familiar, the rather vengeful, utterly evil and mummified undead corpse of Ahmanet is once again loose and raising an army of desicated zombies to do her bidding, which in this case means the ultimate sacrifice of the re-incarnation of her dead boyfriend, TOM CRUISE with an ancient supernatural dagger and a certain myserious blood-red ruby so that the Ancient Egyptian god of death, Set can be reborn in human form so he and her can remake the world and rule it, like all good demonic baddies.

After that it's mad dash race through various plot points and co-incidences leading to the showdown between Ahmanet and TOM CRUISE, where rather surprisingly, TOM CRUISE decides the best way to defeat Ahmanet is to, hmm actually complete her ambition and stab himself to death with the dagger so that, err Set can possess him. And then you realise that this whole sorry piece of shit has just been one very long 107 minute Nick Morton origin story setting him up to be the ultimate super hero in this new Dark Unverse.

And when that particular penny finally drops you realise you've just wasted the last one hour and 47 minutes of your life and that the desiccated zombies in this plodding dreary mess got off lucky.

The other thing wrong with this movie is TOM CRUISE, or at least his performance. Because while everyone else involved act as if they're in a serious movie, TOM CRUISE approaches it as if he's  doing panto. Oh no he doesn't! Oh yes he bloody does, I mean I seriously expected him to turn to the camera and wink at various points in this film so over-the-top was he as he mugged and gurned through every scene stopping just short of doing a full Frankie Howard and nudge-nudging at us while going 'ooooh'!

Realising that perhaps 95% of the target audience of this sort of decaffeinated horror film won't have seen any horror film made before 2002, Univerasal, Kurtzman and the five other writers of this lifeless corpse of a movie see nothing at all wrong in stealing ideas wholesale from far better horror films, like American Werewolf in London, Near Dark and Lifeforce and even The Mummy (1995).

Added to that is Russell Crowe's Dr. Jeykll who's hiding a secret so staggeringly bleedin' obvious that within a minute of meeting him we're introduced to not only his alter-ego but also Crowe's incredible  cockney accent.

It's not all shit, well that's a lie but a big thumbs up anyway to Sofia Boutella who gives it her all and proves she's got spirit, thank fuck someone has.

And that's it. Yet another shit film, oh, it must be Summer. Perhaps that's the last shit film of the blockbuster season cos I'm betting Transformers 5 must be good, because you know, the law of averages says even Michael Bay has to be able to make one decent movie, doesn't he? I mean it's not as if he's Zack Synder is it? Although that said, I've never seen the pair of them in the same room together so who knows...

Anyway, I digress.

This isn't the mother of all bombs, but it's still a mother-fucking piece of shit and scores a feeble 4/10 for being quite entertaining at times especially if you like watching TOM CRUISE run. That said, I'd still say do yourselves a favour and go and see Wonder Woman instead even if you've already seen it.


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