Sunday, August 03, 2008

Nutshell Reviews: Mummy 3: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor

After Mummy 2, I thought the franchise was dead. I really disliked the over-use of CGI effects, particularly during the final scenes versus the Scorpion King. I still can't understand why they didn't do an awesome fight between Brendan Fraiser and The Rock! That would have been cheaper to do than the atrocious fight we got instead.

But the trailer for the new installment, M3:TofDE, actually looked very, very interesting. It had action, humour, cool effects, a neat twist on the concept, a great cast and what appeared to be an interesting plot.

The opening 30 minutes are very boring. A good chunk of this is Rick O'Connell and the new chick playing Evey, who I really dislike, just being boring and very not funny in a "look how funny we are" kinda way. They make an awful joke at the start regarding the change in actress for Evey, and it went downhill fast from there for her. She delivered many of her lines with little flair, and seemed uncomfortable in the role. I really liked how Rachel Weisz managed to play the rough and tough, clumsy damsel, and make it enjoyable to watch. I was really hoping that this new Evie would be used as an example of how bad-ass the Emperor was and get killed. Early. On screen. With no chance for return. I would actually have preferred if Evey's character had not appeared in the movie at all, instead explaining her absence with a signing tour for her new book, or something. Her character did little in the movie to justify her presence anyway!!

But once Jet Li was brought back, things got exciting! The action kicked the movie into high gear, and it was a lot of fun. True, there were still far too many cringe-worthy, soppy moments, and it did get silly a few times. And once again, the CGI was in far too great a supply, but thus is the difficulty of bigger budgets. And the snow in the scenes in the Himalayas was terribly fake looking, particularly if anyone had to run through it, or step in it, or just interact in any way with it. It was clearly a non-sticky, non-melting, non-liquid based powdery stuff. And baddies were, while not quite immortal, ridiculously difficult to kill!

But despite all this, over-all, not a bad movie. It really was fun. I laughed out loud at a few scenes, and it was sufficiently pulp. I won't be rushing out to buy the DVD, and I might even recommend people to wait and watch it on DVD. Mummy 3: Rise of the Dragon Emperor is better than the previous movie in the trilogy, but not as good as the first one, and better than Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, but still not as good as the trailer suggests. Pity. And there are just a few changes that could have made it much better! But that's a story for another time, as it requires talking about plot details and the finale.


Cian said...

That film looks awful, I suppose I didn't like either of the other two or the scorpion king, but I thought the trailer looked crap, the highlight was a brief "huh, she's in it" moment when I saw Michelle Yeoh doing some wacky floating book stuff. Please tell me you've already seen The Dark Knight or you wanted to se it but it was sold out? If you deliberately went to see this instead of The Dark Knight then . . . well, no, I don't see how that's a possibility

Denis said...

Er... actually, I haven't yet seen Dark Knight, and did indeed see Mummy 3 over it that night! But that's because I want to see Dark Knight in IMAX, so I'm waiting till we hit San Fran!!

I liked the first one, and the trailer caught my attention, but the movie was upsettingly poor.

movie nerd said...

Sounds like Tomb of the Dragon Emperor met everyone's expectations... Brendan Frasier tries too hard to act, so you can tell he's acting