The Mummy (1999)

Rating: N/A

Dir: Stephen Sommers
Star: Brendan Fraser, Rachel Weisz, John Hannah, Arnold Vosloo

I like a complex math problem as good as the next guy. Wait a minute. What I meant was, I hate math. I was never any good at it and even worse, I disliked it when I couldn’t figure out why the formulas didn’t work. So, children, today’s math problem: Mummy = cool. Brendan Fraser = dick. story = great. Supporting cast = stupid. Dialogue = too much frivolous banter. Special effects = superb. Bugs = fabulous. Sand Wall = Unbelievable. Acting = crap.

It just doesn’t add up. Sorry. Why they chose the cast they did for this film is still a mystery to me, with the exception of the guy who played the Mummy. Arnold Vosloo had me wracking my brains wondering where I had seen him before, with his Billy Zane intense gaze. I then remembered the Darkman sequels. He was Darkman in the second and third ep. He was a great bad guy, who just fell in love with the wrong girl 3000 years ago and was cursed for all eternity. Ahhh…but then love is like that. Go ahead, cut out my tongue and bury me alive with a bunch of flesh eating bugs, see if I care. I’m in love, man. I’ll be back. Now where have I heard that line before?

The Ultra Super Cool special effects of the Mummy, and the after-effects of raising a Mummy (against the warnings of the locals, natch) were fantastic, including all the plagues that followed. This Mummy had great powers and moved like the wind (literally) while the technology was very respectable. Unfortunately, it just couldn’t hold up the cast of misfits they put together. Brendan Fraser, cute as he is, is not Indiana Jones and cannot support an Indiana Jones-type frivolous attitude towards the end of the world as we know it. It just doesn’t work. Kevin J. O’Connor was good as a sneaky, backstabbing asshole except that his accent was terrible. The rest of the crew…well, in my mind, if you’re going to be indifferent to the most incredible displays of power and the imminent destruction of the entire world, you’d better have more experiences under your belt to merit a myriad of silly one-liners, than just being a librarian in a museum, or a cowboy treasure seeker.

I enjoyed the historical narrative, I loved the special effects and the scenery was incredible. I’m sure Universal will save all the scenery and use some of the special effects for a new ride at their theme park. I was just bored with the acting, whose attitude just didn’t match the inexperience. The formula didn’t work. But it won’t stop me from viewing it again when it comes on TV because it does have some moments.