* * * B
Having just seen the much maligned 2017 reboot of The Mummy, I have to say I was pleasantly surprised, perhaps because my expectations were low. This mummy film has a number of elements not present in the first: It’s set in the present day; there are armies of ghouls, raised by the mummy; her goal is well defined: to incarnate the Egyptian god Set, who the film equates with the Christian Satan. Probably the biggest thing lacking, which led me to rank it as good rather than great, was any of the humour that made the 1999 remake the great film it was.
Nick Morton (Tom “Maverick” Cruise) is a solid hero, heavily flawed and suited to his role. Annabelle Wallis (Jenny Halsey), his love interest, has none of the charm of Rachel Wiess’s Evelyn, making her the weakest link. Henry Jekyll (Russel “Maximus” Crowe), the mastermind of a secret society of monster hunters, is an excellent addition. In playing the mummy herself, Sofia Boutella does a good job of transitioning between monster and seductress.
I really hope that, despite the film’s poor performance, the Dark Universe (of which this is the first film) will continue. A modern day take on the classic monsters of horror has potential to breathe fresh life into them. I really liked the monster hunting institute. I’m guessing that, if subsequent films are well received, The Mummy will come to be remembered more fondly than it is at the moment.