Arts&Culture

Tom Cruise's 'The Mummy' is first film in new connected monster universe

Tom Cruise's 'The Mummy' is first film in new connected monster universe

Why did Tom Cruise select this, what might just be, the worst movie of his robust film career?

Will you leave the theater dying for the next installment of the Dark Universe, with "Bride of Frankenstein" announced for 2019 and future movies planned classic characters including the Creature From the Black Lagoon, Dracula, Van Helsing and The Invisible Man? Was anyone asking for another "Mummy" movie?

Alex Kurtzman's franchise reboot origin story has a fresh horror enabled look, is an elementary part of Universal's re-launch of their "Dark Universe" series, but it's not one that is completely entertaining or interesting for that matter. The first chapter will be available for free, but only if you play on launch day. Those expecting an all-out action adventure like the 1999 version of "The Mummy" starring Brendan Fraser may a bit let down.

Critics have been happy to pile on it, with some even suggesting it might be the worst film of Cruise's career, though those people might want to take another look at his legendarily terrible 1988 clunker Cocktail.

Tom tells us this kind of movie is right up his alley. Zombies walk through London, the mummified princess Ahmanet (Sofia Boutella) sucks the life out of living beings and regains her form, and also spreads her curse to Nick. There, Jekyll (Russell Crowe) loses control and turns into Mr. Hyde.

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This sounds like it should be tolerable to watch, and sometimes it is, early on; Cruise is enjoyable when he's doing movie-star light banter and getting punched out, and we get some pleasant glimpses of Russell Crowe hamming it up as a character named Dr. Henry Jekyll!

Are you ready for another interconnecting movie-franchise universe, this time however combining monsters rather than heroes?

Next up we chatted to Annabelle Wallis, who you might know best from playing Grace Brugess in Peaky Blinders.

On its own, The Mummy is a solid but unspectacular action movie that delivers some thrills and spills that aren't good enough to leave an impression. The only character who has some sort of arc going is Princess Ahmanet (Sofia Boutella), but her main goal is to just have sex with Tom Cruise's Nick Morton (it doesn't bode well when the first word used to describe her is "beautiful"). The rest of the action, even a highly touted airplane-crash stunt that Cruise insisted on performing himself, is mediocre, and without a truly threatening villain, none of it feels particularly consequential. "We made a film for audiences and not critics so my great hope is they will find it and they will appreciate it".

The Mummy hits screens on June 9.


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