Film Review: The Mummy (2017)

Jordan Samuel Jordan Samuel
Expert Contributor
June 11th, 2017

Film Critic and Writer for ComiConverse.com, the Founder and co-host of the official Nerdcast Network Podcast

Review of: The Mummy
Price:
Bad

Reviewed by:
Rating:
2
On June 11, 2017
Last modified:June 11, 2017

Summary:

The Mummy (2017) is one silly attempt at an unnecessary larger universe, which fails in giving a good movie in the process: lacking the fun seen in the previous iterations. Forgetting what made those so precious and beloved for the time. Universal could have done so much better, I would have preferred a lower budget horror movie focused on the franchise roots.

Review of: The Mummy
Price:
Bad

Reviewed by:
Rating:

2
On June 11, 2017
Last modified:June 11, 2017

Summary:

The Mummy (2017) is one silly attempt at an unnecessary larger universe, which fails in giving a good movie in the process: lacking the fun seen in the previous iterations. Forgetting what made those so precious and beloved for the time. Universal could have done so much better, I would have preferred a lower budget horror movie focused on the franchise roots.

MORE NEWS FROM THE WEB

Shared universes are all the rage in Hollywood today, as both Warner Bros. Pictures and Disney headline the idea with big projects of their own. Universal wants to join in all the fun with their monsters universe (Dark Universe), beginning with a reboot of The Mummy (2017). Film critic Jordan Samuel brings us the official ComiConverse review. 

Film Review: The Mummy 

Though safely entombed in a crypt deep beneath the unforgiving desert, an ancient princess, whose destiny was unjustly taken from her, is awakened in our current day bringing with her malevolence grown over millennia, and terrors that defy human comprehension.

Credit: Universal Studios

A shared universe can be a daunting task in the current age of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, adding new stories in a movie series can also make it seem more alive. Universal are known to have attempted pushing famous dark monsters into box-office gold, with various bombs ruining any chances for efforts like Van Helsing, The Wolfman remake, and Dracula Untold.

Earlier this year the studio announced their "Dark Universe", which brings monster icons like Frankenstein and Dracula into a shared world, concentrating on the strange rudiments of such characters. Universal’s Mummy franchise started with the 1932 Boris Karloff (The Mummy) classic, and has become iconic in modern culture spawning various iterations. Stephen Sommers' The Mummy (1999) made the series popular again in the early 2000s, shifting tone from grounded horror into one grand adventure; making it’s a family friendly affair.

I grew up with those movies, as their wide accessibility brought the family together for a few hours. They also gets replayed countless times on television, due to the balanced tone. But after the lackluster sequel The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor (2008), all that positivity was thrown out the window.

2017 brings us a Mummy reboot focused on the horror roots of the franchise, but retaining the adventure themes found in the more recent films. As the hype surrounding it has been silent, I’ve always been optimistic. But does it wrap around modern cinema tightly? Find out as our film critic Jordan Samuel gives us his thoughts on the picture.

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Credit: Universal Studios

The Mummy is a bad start to the Dark Universe, being an incomplete meshing of iterations without the charm and imaginative direction seen in the last couple films to bare this title. Unoriginality blares out from the film's Marvel Studios-style introduction, which from the get-go feels like a rushed goal. Alex Kurtzman takes on the classic tale, and forgets to make the audience feel engaged with the story. Instead, drops us into the battleground head on.

Introducing bland characters, and assuming that we would already be accustomed to their personalities, the connected storytelling bogs the film down in universe set-up; reminding me of The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (2014).

Alex Kurtzman tries his best in elevating beyond those constraints, but the terrible script limits his vision, building walls which block any sense of style and tone. The film ends up seeming like an unnecessary journey towards a larger film franchise.

The Mummy (2017) focuses on an ancient princess, Ahmanet (Sofia Boutella), who is awakened from a crypt in the dessert by Nick Morton (Tom Cruise); an explorer overly taken with his discovery; but that all changes when he is cursed by a great power.

The story is basic and doesn’t expand upon the previous incarnations, as Alex Kurtzman plays everything extremely safe.

Lacking much needed scary moments, The Mummy (2017) comes across like a generic superhero origin movie, with some painful universe set-up thrown in. Instead of being the franchise refresh imagined in the trailers, The Mummy (2017) relies heavily on clichés that feel alien in the current generation of Hollywood.

Credit: Universal Studios

Tom Cruise (Mission Impossible) is Nick Morton a soldier of fortune, specializing in treasure-hunting and tomb-raiding.  He is hired alongside an American military unit in Iraq to retrieve an ancient sarcophagus from Egypt and bring it back to London. Cruise provides one decent performance, bringing his beloved physicality into the role, but ends up being wasted due to some bad screenwriting

Cruise is always great in his movies, he just painfully doesn’t get to do much in this pointless 2-hour reboot. He acts circles around the co-stars, which didn’t shock me, but the audience is not given the chance to care about Nick Morton.

Annebelle Wallis plays the archaeologist Jenny Hasley, The Mummy’s female lead, who is also searching for the lost tomb. Her performance is sadly thrown out in the cause of a blindly dumb female protagonist.

I’m quite disappointed that Alex Kurtzman (Transformers) didn’t provide a nice sidekick for the main character, just leaving us with one giant sour taste of old-school Hollywood horror clichés.

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Now on to the focus, Sofia Boutella (Kingsman: The Secret Service) as The Mummy. This actress is beautiful in the classic role looking both fierce and intense.

Sofia just lacks any connection with the audience, due to her laughably bad motivations for taking over the world. Alex Kurtzman directs her towards some terrifying moments, but these are disconnected from the big-budget action.

Credit: Universal Studios

The screenwriters make her life before the while undead thing, a story of pure evil, limiting any sadness felt but her terrible plans. I feel bad for Sofia Boutella, as the actresses deserves better than this frankly boring villain. The action is uninspired and isn't enough to keep you distracted from the terrible storyline. The editing is also very average.

The Mummy (2017) is one silly attempt at an unnecessary larger universe, which fails in giving us a good movie; which is surely how every successful shared universe must start. This movie forgets what made those earlier films so precious and beloved for all time. Universal could have done so much better, I would have preferred a lower-budget horror movie focused on the franchise's roots.

The Mummy

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Bad

The Mummy (2017) is one silly attempt at an unnecessary larger universe, which fails in giving a good movie in the process: lacking the fun seen in the previous iterations. Forgetting what made those so precious and beloved for the time. Universal could have done so much better, I would have preferred a lower budget horror movie focused on the franchise roots.

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