Saturday, August 9, 2008

The Mummy: Tomb Of The Dragon Emperor

Genre: Action & Adventure
I loved The Mummy I and II, so I was looking forward to the next installment of this movie and I was pleasantly surprised when I found out that they have made the third installment when I saw the trailer about 6 weeks ago. It was a highly effective trailer and gave me a lot of ideas of what to expect. A mindless-fun-decent-action-popcorn movie.

First of all, the plot follows the same logic used in the previous movies. But like so many sequels, the story line becomes repetitive. A lot of events repeat themselves, and a pivotal moment from one of the prequels occurs again...just with a different character. Rachel Weisz is greatly missed in here since she shares an amazing chemistry with Fraser. While in this movie, Fraser is never able to connect with Bello who tries to be cheerful but comes off looking rather silly as the smart girl. She is great in action scenes, but she looks uncomfortable when she has to share a scene with Fraser. The same can be said for Luke Ford, who makes a very unconvincing action hero-sidekick next to Fraser. Again they have no chemistry what so ever as father and son. And seriously, although Alex O’ Conell seems to be aging well, his parents seem to never aged even a bit which raised questions in my head: Have they been drinking from the water of the Shangri La? Or did the make-up artist is just too lazy to add wringkles or even grey hairs to make them look appropriate for their ages? Despite the lack of chemistry between Bello-Fraser-Ford, fortunately, John Hannah doesn’t disappoint and brighten the movie with his one liners and witty charm. Michelle Yeoh and Jet Li are great in this movie. It is refreshing to see Jet Li portraying an evil character and it really pays off when he is actually on screen.

The jokes, although cornier than the previous films, were still able to make me chuckles. The cinematography is great. The scenery of the Himalayan mountains, the sandy desert, and the Shangri La green land with its waterfalls are beautiful. The action in the film is good, as well. The gun fights, sword fights, old school warfare, and new warfare are justly balanced. One scene I liked (and wish would have lasted longer) was the sword battle between Jet Li and Yeoh. Seeing Li and Yeoh able to cut each other, even just a little, is one of the few high points in the movie. The trademarked silly battle scene, which made me giggle more than once, was also still presented. It was really amusing to see a huge army of terracota soldiers run forward and get shot at by guns. There is also one unintentionally silly action sequence when Fraser thought it would be smart to take on Jet Li in hand to hand combat. The idea is just hilarious!

All in all, The Mummy: The Tomb Of The Dragon Emperor is your typical summer flick movie which is filled with laughs, car chases, special effects, and mummies. If you're stressed out, bored, or just want to see another movie after seeing the really dark and complex tale of The Dark Knight and just wanna check your brain at the door and have fun then this movie is for you.

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