(In mild defence of:) THE MUMMY (2017) – MOVIE REVIEW

THE MUMMY (2017) – MOVIE REVIEW

Is The Mummy (2017) an original movie?  No! Is Tom Cruise’s latest attempt at a movie franchise a good film? Not particularly!  But is it an entertaining-take-your-brain-out-popcorn movie?  Yes!  Now, of course, film reviews are all about opinions and The Mummy is an average film at best, but compared to some of the blockbusters of recent years such as Batman v. Superman (2016) and Suicide Squad (2016), it at least makes sense and has a decent through-line narrative.

The Mummy

I mean, I watch a lot of films, some great, some okay and some not-so-great and every now and then a film receives a critical pasting it deserves. But sometimes films get a kicking they don’t deserve. I think that bloggers and critics, professional or hobbyists, love the sound of their own voice, keyboard-tapping and ego passing judgement. Indeed, I am no different. To give the thumbs up or thumbs down can be empowering; it’s a lot of fun. Yet, at times one can get so caught up in their higher ideals of film critique and actually apply intelligent analysis to the wrong films. Either that or they just thought the film was crap! But in The Mummy’s case I don’t think it is.

mummy_crash

The film kicks off at a fantastic pace and aside from a mid-act breather for some exposition from Russell Crowe’s Dr Jekyll, keeps up the fast action relentlessly. Because, essentially this is all plot, action, jokes and monsters and is NOT MEANT TO BE TAKEN SERIOUSLY! The story is pretty simple and mirrors the Brendan Fraser movies from the late 90s/early 2000s; and any number of Mummy monster films where a hidden tomb is opened up and releases unimaginable horror upon the world. The old Universal Boris Karloff classic from 1932 was a moodier, low-budget and atmospheric affair while this is an altogether whizz-bang-rollercoaster-ride-affair.

mummyheader-1

The main protagonist is Tom Cruise’s Nick Morton. He is basically an Indiana Jones meets Ethan Hunt type soldier, who along with his partner Chris Vail (Jake Johnson) is looting Iraq for Saddam’s hidden treasures. Of course, things don’t go according to plan and he and his partner, along with Annabelle Wallis’ fill-in-the-history-dots-archaeologist, unearth a monstrous and murderous Egyptian princess called Ahmanet (striking Sofia Boutella). In recent films such as Kingsman: Secret Service (2014) and Star Trek: Beyond (2016), Boutella has proved herself a physically commanding performer and once again she stands out here.

the-mummy-russell-crowe-dr-jekyll

I don’t know but maybe I was in a good mood but I really enjoyed the bone-snapping ghouls; heart-stopping plane crash; Ahmanet’s sensual yet suspenseful pursuit; car chases through the murky woods; underwater zombies; duality of man versus monster theme; plus a great little homage to An American Werewolf in London (1981). I would say though that Tom Cruise probably unhinged the story slightly with his “superstar” persona and a less well-known actor may have added a bit more suspense. However, his characters’ arc was actually quite interesting as a cursed thief questioning his morals and actions. Plus, the final pay off, suggesting further adventures, was actually quite satisfying too.

mummy_underwater

In fact, while it’s very generic with haphazard plotting it is no worse than blockbusters like A Force Awakens (2015) or Fast and Furious 7 (2015) or Mission Impossible 6 (2016); which I enjoyed but are all very surface and style-driven, while remaining entertaining action films. Overall, The Mummy was totally unoriginal and I would’ve preferred even more horror and gore! But if, like me, you sometimes don’t want to think too much it works as a silly bit of monster entertainment with some brilliant action stunts thrown in. An alternative title perhaps could have been The Mummy: Romancing the Bones – and ultimately it is nowhere near as bad as many critics have stated; in my humble keyboard-tapping opinion that is.

(Mark: 7 out of 11)

 

 

 

 

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10 thoughts on “(In mild defence of:) THE MUMMY (2017) – MOVIE REVIEW”

  1. Interesting. I really enjoyed the Brendan Fraser movie before they released their sequels but am of the opinion that the above film doesn’t need to have been made.

    I haven’t yet watched this movie, so can’t give an opinion on it, but do have an opinion on whether films like this should be made or not. It seems to me that some critics are judging these films based on their peer films that are also released in this day and age of cinema. There are comments like “its not as bad as Fast & Furious 7” which, to me, is just comparing crap to crap?

    Just because the other films out at the moment (or the general trend of movies as of late) are really naff, it seems to make the “Average” movies really good. To me, they are just “less” crap, it doesn’t make them any good.

    I remember when the popcorn action movies of the 90’s like “Independence Day” “The Rock” Armageddon” “Contact” etc were initially seen as just good popcorn pics, but now those types of films are seen as great because their 2 thousand and teen counterparts are either superhero movies, remakes or just a load of dross.

    The general quality of films being released is diminishing but the audiences are putting up with it and still spending their money to go and watch these films. Mainly in the hope that there are still some great films in this genre that are very good (Logan, Nolans Batman Trilogy)

    I’ll give it a watch, but knowing that this film is being made solely to launch another franchise really pisses me off and I will wait until it comes out on another format preferably.

  2. I wrote a reasonably lengthy comment, but it doesn’t seemed to have saved. I tried to post again but it believes its already there so wont allow me to post a duplicate…. I’ll try again below?

    Interesting. I really enjoyed the Brendan Fraser movie before they released their sequels but am of the opinion that the above film doesn’t need to have been made.

    I haven’t yet watched this movie, so can’t give an opinion on it, but do have an opinion on whether films like this should be made or not. It seems to me that some critics are judging these films based on their peer films that are also released in this day and age of cinema. There are comments like “its not as bad as Fast & Furious 7” which, to me, is just comparing crap to crap?

    Just because the other films out at the moment (or the general trend of movies as of late) are really naff, it seems to make the “Average” movies really good. To me, they are just “less” crap, it doesn’t make them any good.

    I remember when the popcorn action movies of the 90’s like “Independence Day” “The Rock” Armageddon” “Contact” etc were initially seen as just good popcorn pics, but now those types of films are seen as great because their 2 thousand and teen counterparts are either superhero movies, remakes or just a load of dross.

    The general quality of films being released is diminishing but the audiences are putting up with it and still spending their money to go and watch these films. Mainly in the hope that there are still some great films in this genre that are very good (Logan, Nolans Batman Trilogy)

    I’ll give it a watch, but knowing that this film is being made solely to launch another franchise really pisses me off and I will wait until it comes out on another format preferably.

    1. Fair play. I enjoyed it in the way I enjoyed the first Brendan Fraser film and many of the other superhero films around but it lacked depth and tonality really lacked coherence.

      My point though is this film seemed to get a kicking when you could quite easily stick the boot into any number of genre/popcorn films. Like John Carter and Lone Ranger in recent years, The Mummy has been slated but is very entertaining. It’s forgettable and an unnecessary film of course but I had fun watching it on the big screen.

      Btw – watch Colossal and Baby Driver if you get a chance. Both excellent genre films from interesting and stylish directors.

    1. Yes, thanks for reading. Well, as I said it’s not a great film but sometimes certain blockbusters are critiqued from a slightly artistic perspective rather than from the more commercial point of view. To me The Mummy was a decent genre film, similar to Force Awakens in that it copies an established cinema universe pretty well. Forgettable and ephemeral entertainment largely but not a total turkey as some have made out.

      1. Absolutely. I mean I saw a film this weekend called Light Between Oceans and I loved the story. Such a deep emotional movie and it received no award nominations at all, and it was way better than half the Oscar nominees. Go figure.

        The point in regard to the Mummy is there sometimes can be the odd critic or write who finds some positives in it as just a good old-fashioned B-movie entertainment. I felt the same about John Carter when that came out. That was great but didn’t get very good reviews or box office.

      2. It can happen like that. Movies that have been slated can actually be enjoyable. Or the opposite, where something has been acclaimed and turns out to be sub par.

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