Short reviews for clear and concise verdicts on a broad range of films…
The Mummy (Alex Kurtzman/2017)
It’s all about Tom Cruise. Before you sit in your chair, The Mummy is a Cruiseathon to the max. His star power, Universal hope, will pull in an audience to ensure their “Dark Universe” series snags a positive start. Sadly, you may regret watching this one, let alone turning up for the next film. The Mummy begins as Nick (Cruise) and his ever-whinging partner (Jake Johnson) try and “nick” a few artefacts in Iraq to sell on the black market. With the help of an archaeologist (Annabelle Wallis), they stumble upon a tomb – or, more specifically, a mummified prison for a vicious, supernatural evil set on gaining immortality. At its core, The Mummy has no depth or cohesive theme that ties everything together. It’s one action set-piece after another, soaked in CGI and a Cruise fan’s wet dream; close-ups on his face, endless running and a full-frontal shot as he hides his piece. Tempted by the hieroglyph-tattooed villain (Sofia Boutella) that he could be a God, clearly the filmmakers believe he is one already. Then there’s the awkward “universe-building”, as Russell Crowe is a Nick Fury figure, with a barmy dual-role as posh-boy Jekyll and East-End Hyde. This monster mayhem is taken far too seriously, and The Mummy, from 1999, at least managed to be fun. While I wouldn’t wrap this up and bury it for eternity, The Mummy requires a double-eye roll in its dated clichés, thoroughly lacking the charm needed to ensure we’d revisit such a dark universe.