Friday, August 15, 2008

CRITIQUE & REVIEW: “The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor” is More Fun, Less Filling


The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor” is a fun but hollow experience that suffers from never really making you feel any of the danger threatening our heroes. It feels formulaic in the most uninspired way… and I like formulaic movies that celebrate archetypes and mythology. The fourth Indiana Jones movie had a “son of Indy” plotline so does the fourth Mummy (I count the Scorpion King). The Imhotep bad guy of the first two editions had real gravitas. You could feel the evil and menace when he growled in his ancient Egyptian tongue. The Dragon Emperor in the latest movie only really becomes scary when he transforms into an actual dragon or an angry fu dog. The coolest creature in the movie turns out to be the Yeti (AKA: the Abominable Snowman). Maria Bello is fine as replacement for the newly high-falutin' Rachel Weisz. The Chinese setting was OK but I never really felt like I was in 1947 China… no Communist-Kuomintang Civil War or any allusion to the looming Communist takeover. It is a good-looking movie that benefits from being seen on the big screen. If you can, see it in a theater though waiting for high-def DVD will probably make you feel better that you decided to see Dark Knight again rather than seeing on the big screen.


Look: 8
Story: 5
Acting: 5
Goal: 6
Intangibles: 5
Overall: 6

6 comments:

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Critique said...

You are generous in your review of this movie. For me it is easily one of the worst movies have seen this year.
However you are very true in writing that the movie is 'formulaic' and 'hollow'.

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