review by Bobby Blakey
Universal had already launched a successful Mummy franchise in 1999 that consisted of The Mummy, The Mummy Returns and The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor. Now Universal has announced they are creating a shared universe for the famed Universal Monsters with 2014s Dracula, Untold originally supposed to kick it off, but now the new vision of The Mummy positioned to be the beginning starring Tom Cruise, Russell Crowe, Sofia Boutella, Jake Johnson and Annabelle Wallis, but does it bring something new to the iconic franchise or should it have stayed buried?
The Mummy follows 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. There has been a lot of mixed emotions on this new take on the Mummy story, but the first thing you have to know is that this is part of a bigger plan. As mentioned this film is kicking off the all new Dark Universe of the Universal monsters so there is a lot of things injected here for a bigger purpose. With that being said, other than the ending it manages to stand on its own. The trailers never fully engaged me, but I can say I was pleasantly surprised by how fun the movie was as a whole. Anyone expecting a horror film is just silly as this is going the action adventure route with a hint of the horror elements just like the 1999 film. I actually liked this version of the Mummy way better in both back story and execution. It felt like there was an actual evil element to the character and less cartoonish than the previous outings.
The cast were fine, but I have to admit that it is always strange to see Cruise play a role that is less than heroic. I like seeing people do different things and he was the usual Cruise here, but the character is a bit bumbling and slow at times which is a bit distracting. The nod to American Werewolf in London was fun element of storytelling and worked well to help navigate some of the story. Russell Crowe hams it up in a fun role that I enjoyed that I won’t spoil for those that have not been keeping up with this new universe. Of everyone here it was Sofia Boutella who stole the show. Ever since she broke out in The Kingsman: Secret Service she has been on a mad tear and this is just another cool role that she is great in. I know some might not like a female mummy, but she offered up a sexy evil take on the character that just works all around.
I really enjoyed this film, but you have to go into understanding what you are getting. There is already a big issue trying to take iconic horror characters and make them into a big franchise with a PG-13 rating. I would much rather have old school blood soaked horror, but this is what we got and it does open up some doors to an interesting future should the film work. This is not a remake of any previous Mummy film, but instead its own vision that fans will either embrace and have some fun or not.
In addiiton to this film this release includes tons of bonus content including deleted & extended scenes and numerous featurettes taking you further behind this universe. Grab your copy of The Mummy when it hits 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray, DVD and On Demand on September 12th from Universal Home Entertainment.