The worst thing about The Mummy is that the name of Tom Cruise’s character is Nick, the same name as Jake Johnson’s character in New Girl. It was weird to watch Nick talk to Nick. New Girl stars Zooey Deschanel as Jessica Day, a fun, quirky girl living with three other guys in a loft and is currently going into it’s seventh season.
I’d fallen behind on the series but recently caught up to the fifth season on Netflix. I really liked Nick’s relationship with Megan Fox’s character but still hope that he’ll get back together with Jess. There seems to be some controversy online between where Universal’s “Dark Universe” franchise of monster movies begins. Regardless of the official answer, The Mummy feels like the first one to me. It’s the first movie I’ve seen with the official logo at the beginning.
Assuming The Mummy is the first installment in the Dark Universe, I’d say it does a good job in setting up and hinting at future films. There are various easter eggs that do interest me but don’t really help this film in any way.
The best I can say about it is that it’s a serviceable movie. It gives you plenty of action, suspense and a surprising amount of funny moments. While there are some better than average action set pieces, they are surrounded by a bland story and script. Every line spoken is just a way to move on to the next scene. Exposition and characters’ stories are told in their first scenes and never brought up again. Cruise and Johnson are introduced as some kind of soldiers/thieves. That ends up being completely irrelevant. Annabelle Wallis as Jenny Halsey is an expert in Gods, or something like that. That backstory is literally just there for some more exposition later. Russell Crowe is maybe the best written character but even he has an out of place narration in the opening.
I noticed something else after reading The Mummy’s IMDb page. There are really only five essential characters. Most movies have one or two leads (Cruise and Boutella or Crowe), but there are always important supporting characters. Off the top of my head I can only think of a couple scenes where anyone else had any significant roles. There’s a colonel who yells at people, servants who assist in Crowe’s lab, and some investigators who get killed almost immediately. I don’t know if this is a flaw or not, I just think it’s an interesting observation.
The Mummy is often too complex and busy than it needs to be. It seemed like they (the screenwriters) kept tweaking the mythology of Boutella’s mummy with all too easy explanations. It allows for small twists in the story but often left me scratching my head. I’m not a smart guy… but still.
Based off the title of my blog, The Mummy and Dark Universe’s monster movies should be right up my alley. So I’ll put some of this into perspective. The Mummy was not made for snobby critics to overanalyze. It’s a summer blockbuster that kids on break can go to and stuff their faces with popcorn. I guess I’m going the snob route since I’ve already analyzed this film more than it was meant for. Tom Cruise is plenty charismatic and it’s not hard to have a good time in this film. Don’t expect a masterpiece, just a decent action-adventure film.
PS: I go by the name, Monster. I’m not actually one.