The Mummy (2017) Non-Review

The Mummy (2017) is Universal Studio’s reboot of the 1932 classic monster movie starring Boris Karloff,, was supposed to kick off Universal’s “Dark Universe” of interconnected rebooted or reimagined classics. The “Dark Universe” was Universal’s attempt to mimic the success of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Alas, things did not go as planned for Universal and The Mummy is to blame.

It was a fall from grace. During the 1930s and 1940s Universal was the undisputed master of the monster film, releasing such classics as Dracula (1931), Frankenstein (1931), The Wolfman (1941), and The Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954). The three attempts to update these classics met with lacklustre box office numbers and downright bad reviews forcing Universal to rethink and retool its planned cinematic universe. 

I can’t review 2017’s The Mummy (2017) as I could not bear to watch the entire film. It started off well, setting up an interesting backstory. A subway construction crew finds a tomb in modern-day London. It contains the graves of a group of crusaders who in 1127 attacked Egypt and returned their ill-gotten booty to merry ole England. Enter Russell Crowe as Dr. Henry Jekyll/Mr. Edward Hyde (You can see where this Dark Universe thing is going). 

Egyptian Princess Ahmanet in The Mummy (2017)
Egyptian Princess Ahmanet in The Mummy (2017)

In a flashback, Jekyll/Hyde tells the story of Egyptian Princess Ahmanet, the pharaoh’s daughter who would become queen upon his death. She is a fierce fighter (and quite a looker). Unfortunately for Ahmanet her father has a son, meaning she will lose her claim to the throne. Hell has no fury like a woman scorned. Ahmanet enters into a dark pact with the god Set. She kills her father and brother, and about to kill her final sacrifice, sealing the deal, before she is stopped. She is mummified alive (really just wrapped in a bunch of bandages – mummification is a lot more involved) and buried far away from Egypt. 

Flash-forward to Northern Iraq. US Army soldiers Sergeant Nick Morton and Corporal Chris Vail surveil a village full of insurgents. When Morton removes his face covering we are greeted by no other than Tom Cruise. 

Tom. Fucking. Cruise. 

I loath Tom Cruise. Since he went all nutty for Scientology, I have zero desire to see one of his films. Maybe it was just a cameo, I hoped. I kept watching against my better judgment. 

A drone strike against the insurgents opens a huge hole in the ground revealing an Egyptian relic. That’s unusual for Iraq! Archeologist Jenny Halsey is called in. In the tomb, they retrieve a sarcophagus and fly it to England for further study. Unfortunately, the plane is attacked by a flock of birds. Engines fall off, the plane is about to crash. Morton finds a parachute for the good archeologist and pushes her to safety, sacrificing himself. 

Tom Cruise sacrifices himself in The Mummy (2017)
Tom Cruise sacrifices himself in The Mummy (2017)

At this point I thought, great! Cruise’s extended cameo is done. I can safely watch the remainder of this film Cruise-free. 

Cut to a scene in a morgue with the aircrew bagged and tagged. Suddenly one of them sits up, startled. He rips open his body bag, and…

Tom. Fucking. Cruise. 

An unfortunately undead Tom Cruise in The Mummy (2017)
An unfortunately undead Tom Cruise in The Mummy (2017)

He didn’t die. How? Why? Thirty minutes into a nearly two-hour movie and I called it a day. Another 90 minutes with Mr. Cruise would be too much to stand. 

What happened? What about the mummy? 

Don’t know, don’t care. You know why?

Tom. Fucking. Cruise. 

What did other reviews say about The Mummy (2017) ?

The movie itself is rather like the Hollywood mummies of old: There it walks, lurching from side to side on rigid legs, deadly in its intent but uncertain of the right path, trailing bandages as it goes.

Kate Taylor, Globe and Mail

It feels less like a movie than a series of compromises worked out by a corporate committee.

Matt Rozsa, Salon.com

Did our hero even bother to read the script for this toxic CGI dump site?

Peter Howell, Toronto Star

Who starred in this?

Tom Cruise … Nick Morton

Russell Crowe … Henry Jekyll

Annabelle Wallis … Jenny Halsey

Sofia Boutella … Ahmanet

Jake Johnson … Sgt. Vail

Courtney B. Vance … Colonel Greenway

Should I watch this?

Only a sadist would watch this entire film. Or someone with a Tom Cruise fetish. Or Scientologists. 

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