"The Mummy" Operates On Cruise Control

Tom Cruise and Annabelle Wallis in “The Mummy”
Tom Cruise and Annabelle Wallis in “The Mummy”

Movie Review - Jackie K Cooper

“The Mummy” (Universal)

Tom Cruise has had a long and successful career as an actor. Now at age fifty four he is still popular but not at the top of his game as he once was. In a movie like “The Mummy” he appears to be operating on “Cruise control,” not doing much innovative in the way of acting but rather relying on his looks and charm to get him through. For some that may be enough but for others it won't. I'm with the others.

In the film Cruise plays Nick Morton, who along with his buddy Chris Vail (Jake Johnson) is hunting for rare antiquities in Iraq. They discover the tomb of Ahmanet (Sofia Boutella), a sorceress of sorts who was placed in a sarcophagus while still alive. The tomb is where this sarcophagus is located. Although Nick and Chris locate this site the U. S. Army takes over and places the sarcophagus inside a plane for transport. When the plane crashes, Ahmanet is released and all hell breaks loose.

If you think back a few years you will remember another series of “Mummy” movies which starred Brendan Fraser. Fraser is not a leading man of the caliber of Cruise but he managed to make those movies exciting and enjoyable, something Cruise can not accomplish here. This film swoops from one illogical setting to the next, never stopping long enough for any character development or plot explanation.

The film also seesaws between comedy, wink- wink, and drama. Ahmanet is a scourge to the planet but no one appears to take it all that seriously. Thousands appear to be killed at her behest but the police/Army turn out in very small numbers. It is mostly Nick and his girl friend/associate Jenny (Annabelle Wallis) who seem to be on the attack.

Also in the cast is Russell Crowe. Now here is a good actor who can't catch a break or a good role. He is a man who is good and bad it seems. But his change in temperament is not his fault – or is it? By the end of the movie you don't really care one way or the other.

The film is rated PG-13 for profanity and violence.

The film sets everything up for a sequel, but box office should be bad enough to cancel that idea. Cruise ought to get back to his “Mission Impossible” movies as soon as possible and leave the mummy hunting alone. His career will undoubtedly survive this clunker but for poor Russell Crowe it might be the last nail in the sarcophagus.

If you think you may want to sit through the credits to see if there are any scenes from a forthcoming sequel, don't. There are none. And maybe that is a good sign after all.

I scored “The Mummy” a shrouded 4 out of 10.

Jackie K Cooper - www.jackiekcooper.com

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