The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor D+
Starring: Brendan Fraser, Maria Bello, Luke Ford, and Jet Li
Directed by Rob Cohen (XXX)
Rated PG-13 for adventure action and violence
Appropriate for ages 13+
The Story: Many years have passed since the adventures of the second Mummy outing, and now college-age son Alex (Ford) joins his parents (Fraser and Bello) to stop a Chinese emperor mummy (Li) from destroying the world.
The Good: Were you to watch this film with the volume off, it might be a fairly good adventure film. The special effects are top notch, the sets are impressive, and the overall production is strong.
The Bad: Turn the volume up and what you find here is a mix of terrible writing and acting. Coming from the writing team of Miles Millar and Alfred Gough (Herbie Fully Loaded), the dialogue here is atrocious, filled with too much exposition, too many clichés, and not enough imagination. The overall story isn’t bad, but trodding through it with these words is just tedious.
As for the acting, while Rachel Weisz says she didn’t reprise her role due to her pregnancy, I can just see her looking at this script and then making any excuse not to come back. Replacing her is the typically good Maria Bello, but between the bad accent and the worse script, I wish they had dumped the character all together. Fraser is very average (which is to be expected), but my problem with him lies more in the fact that he doesn’t pass for the father of a twenty-something co-adventurer at all. I’m sure that with a stronger script, the acting could have been better. After all, there is some decent talent here, but with the material given the acting is bound to be pretty lame.
The Summary: Let’s just pray that Mummy 4 stays buried.