Brendan Fraser (George of the Jungle, Bedazzled) returns as Rick O’Connell along with a surprisingly high amount of the original characters from the popular 1999 movie, The Mummy, that started this entertaining series. Both films are written and directed by Stephen Sommers (Jungle Book, Adventures of Huck Finn) who does a great job blending in characters into this new adventure along with some impressive side stories that involve past lives and the element of fate in the characters’ lives.
Rick’s love interest, Evelyn (Rachel Weisz), Evelyn brother, Jonathan (John Hannah), Magi leader Ardeth Bay (Oded Fahr) and antagonists Im-Ho-Tep (Andrew Vosloo) and Anck-Su-Nanum (Patricia Velazquez), return with new characters, Alex (little Freddie Boath) and The Scorpion King played by Dwayne Johnson, a.k.a. “The Rock”. Fans of “The Rock” maybe disappointed in the relatively small amount of screen time he gets, but don’t worry, this movie plays as a teaser for the upcoming spin-off movie The Scorpion King.
As in the first movie, The Mummy Returns uses “in your face” special effects touched with comedy which produce more surprises and thrills instead of frightening scares. This technique may disappoint fans looking for genuine scares, but moviemakers want the largest audience possible for this giant adventure.
The admirable displays of love among the O’Connells and the honorable efforts of the Magi soldiers put even more emotion in the story as the audience can really relate and cheer with the characters during their amazing adventures. One key scene near the end of the film shows one of the main characters asking an emotional question when faced with a tense dilemma. These types of encounters ensure that the characters develop at the same rate as the challenges they face and keep the audience involved in the story.
The Mummy Returns stays very close to the formula that made the first movie such a success, e.g. the domino-like fall of giant pillars near the beginning plays out well, but was seen before in a library scene in the first Mummy movie. The movie uses great special effects, numerous globetrotting location changes including England, Jordan and Morocco, and a fast paced story full of action and excitement at every turn. Recommended (*** out of four stars) and rated PG-13 for violence and war action.
Copyright © Michael Siebenaler