Thursday, December 31, 2009

The Mummy (1999)

I will be upfront about this one. I don't like this film. I don't like this series. And I especially don't like Stephen Sommers, whose corrupting touch has ruined potentially excellent films with his offbeat blending of action, comedy, and horror along with distasteful amounts of computer imaging. I cannot separate myself from this, and reviewing his films is often intimidating to me and my integrity as a film critic. THE MUMMY brings the mummified Egyptian priest Imhotep back to life when a cocky adventurer leads the bookish daughter of an archaeologist to the fabled City of the Dead, where the treasure of the pharaohs is rumored to be buried. Little do they know that the treasure has been sealed with a curse that awakens the ancient monster, who sets out to destroy Egypt and reclaim his lost love in a resurrection ceremony that will require the sacrifice of a certain female protagonist. Given the time of its release, THE MUMMY does offer ground-breaking special FX in creating the hallowed but animated corpse, and marks one of the first films to implement the track-motion CGI modeling. The sand modeling is also extremely impressive, and holds up much better than some of the earlier establishing shots that already appear dated. My biggest problem is the uneven tone of the film. It is never unnerving enough to be considered Horror, and certainly isn't funny enough to be a Comedy. That leads it into the questionable Action/Adventure genre, which falls far from the original upon which it was based. Moreover, it forces its leads to come off as goofy and over the top despite decent performances. While the film is rich in fantasy as well, it repeatedly defies logic and historical accuracy in lieu of conveniently placed action and comic relief. For a big-budget blockbuster in a pretty package that has been specifically designed for mass consumption, THE MUMMY certainly fits the bill and offers an interesting take on the classic legend, but I find watching it to be more of a chore that I put off for longer and longer between each viewing.

Rating: 8/10.
Entertainment: 7/10.
Number of views: 5.



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1 comment:

  1. I fell asleep when I saw this in the theater. The fact that it has so many sequels and has given carrers to Summers and Brandon Fraiser make me sick.

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