Also known as: The Mummy 3 (informal title), Untitled Rick O’Connell Adventure, The Mummy 3: Curse of the Dragon (working titles) Release Date: July 24th, 2008 (Moscow premiere) Directed by: Rob Cohen Written by: Alfred Gough, Miles Millar Based on: characters by Stephen Sommers, Lloyd Fonvielle, Kevin Jarre Music by: Randy Edleman Cast: Brendan Fraser, John Hannah, Jet Li, Maria Bello, Russell Wong, Liam Cunningham, Luke Ford, Isabella Leong, Michelle Yeoh
The Sommers Company, Relativity Media, Universal Pictures, 112 Minutes
“I hate mummies! They never play fair!” – John Carnahan
Fuck me. This was damn near unwatchable and getting through it was a hell of a challenge. But I wanted to complete the trilogy for the sake of reviewing them all.
This was so bad and weird that Rachel Weisz passed on it after reading the script and not wanting to play mother to a twenty-two year-old son. I guess Brendan Fraser came back after they threw like fourteen million dollars at him.
The only other returning cast member from previous films was John Hannah.
Somehow, Rick O’Connell has a kid that’s in his twenties, even though Rick looks the same as he did in the previous two movies. If you remember, the son was like seven years-old in the previous film and he wasn’t even born yet in the one before that. But whatever.
This time Evie is played by Maria Bello. Generally, I like Maria Bello but man was she poorly cast for this role. She doesn’t look like Evie, doesn’t act like her and it just breaks the movie. It’s a situation where the film would’ve been better off having the character omitted, whether that came from being an offscreen death or divorce.
In this story, the heroes go to China and we get a new mummy played by Jet Li. I hope Li got a fat paycheck too because this utilized him poorly.
Additionally, the special effects seem like they’re worse than they were in the previous movies.
Man, this just shouldn’t have been made. It’s absolute shit and I probably would’ve hated it more had I seen it in the theater back in 2008.
At least now, I can say that I’ve seen it, reviewed it and can go on to forget it.
Also known as: The Mummy 2 (working title) Release Date: April 29th, 2001 (premiere) Directed by: Stephen Sommers Written by: Stephen Sommers Based on: characters by Stephen Sommers, Lloyd Fonvielle, Kevin Jarre Music by: Alan Silvestri Cast: Brendan Fraser, Rachel Weisz, John Hannah, Arnold Vosloo, Oded Fehr, Patricia Velásquez, Freddie Boath, Alun Armstrong, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje
“[to Rick] My friend, there is a fine line between coincidence and fate.” – Ardeth Bay
Let me start by saying that this is not as good as its predecessor, 1999’s The Mummy. That’s probably not a shock, though, as generally everyone agrees with that, critics included.
However, I will also say that this was better than I remembered it being and I think that fun adventure movies were in such abundance in this era that I may have taken it for granted.
My only big gripe with this movie is how atrocious the CGI was on the Scorpion King character at the end of the film. It looks like they took The Rock straight out of WWF SmackDown! 2: Know Your Role for the PlayStation 1 and added pinchers to his hands. Man, I remember it being atrocious in 2001 and it looks even worse now. What’s really odd about it, is that most of The Mummy effects looked pretty good and held up fairly well. Even the worst CGI effects are still somewhat passable.
I thought that the story was just okay but I did like that Patricia Velásquez actually had a bigger role and I liked the material they came up with for her past connection to Rachel Weisz’s Evie. I also like that this allowed Evie to hold her own in the action sequences and that she was no longer just a typical damsel in distress.
I wasn’t crazy about the kid being added to the proceedings, as kid actors can wreck a movie and honestly, his scenes are mostly annoying. I’d hate to blame the kid, specifically, and I think it has more to do with the script and Stephen Sommers’ directing.
One takeaway from this and the previous movie, as well, is the fact that Oded Fehr’s Ardeth Bay is such a cool f’n character and even though The Rock became a massive star, I think that the producers should’ve probably given Fehr his own spinoff movie first.
Anyway, this is mostly more of the same but it does feel like it’s happening on a much larger scale. However, for some reason, when Imhotep is resurrected in this film, I guess the Ten Plagues of Egypt aren’t a factor anymore.
One doesn’t watch these sort of movies to be overly picky about details, though. This is just supposed to be fun, mindless escapism, which is something I praise a lot. This movie really works in that regard until the finale where we get PS1 graphics Dwayne Johnson.
Release Date: April 16th, 1999 (Portugal) Directed by: Stephen Sommers Written by: Stephen Sommers, Lloyd Fonvielle, Kevin Jarre Music by: Jerry Goldsmith Cast: Brendan Fraser, Rachel Weisz, John Hannah, Arnold Vosloo, Jonathan Hyde, Kevin J. O’Connor, Oded Fehr, Erick Avari, Stephen Dunham, Corey Johnson, Tuc Watkins, Omid Djalili, Aharon Ipale, Bernard Fox, Patricia Velásquez
Alphaville Films, Universal Pictures, 124 Minutes
“I only gamble with my life, never my money.” – Rick
I was a big fan of this movie when it originally came out. However, in the years since, it’s kind of gone down the memory hole due to its sequels and spinoffs, which each seemed to get worse. Also, the more I saw from Stephen Sommers, the more I disliked him as a director.
However, I wanted to see this with pretty fresh eyes, as its been nearly twenty years since I last watched it and a lot of the details have been lost. Granted, these details came rushing back to me, as I watched the picture again.
I loved this so much in 1999 because of three reasons.
The first is that I had been yearning for something Indiana Jones-like since that series ended ten years earlier with 1989’s Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.
The second is that I have always loved the Universal Monsters franchise and this reboot of one of Universal’s classic monsters was something that got me really excited.
The third is that this starred Brendan Fraser as a lead in a blockbuster. I was a fan of the guy and loved watching him move up the Hollywood ladder since seeing him in the early ’90s in Encino Man and School Ties.
So seeing this now, I pretty much fell in love with it again. It also made me wish that Hollywood could just stop with the crap and make fun summer movies again. Sure, the occasional fun blockbuster comes out now and again but these things used to be really common and they were also made to entertain the audience and allowed them to get lost in the magic of Hollywood for a few hours. This reminded me of how big blockbusters coming to theaters were really big events in pop culture. It feels like that’s been gone for a few years and not just because of COVID; it started before that.
While I felt like the overall story, here, wasn’t particularly strong, it didn’t matter as much as the spectacle and scope of the film. This was ambitious for 1999 but it succeeded and probably much more than what was anticipated for it.
The special effects wowed audiences and they are mostly still good, even though some of it does look a wee bit dated. However, the big CGI heavy sequences still play well and nothing really pulls you out of the movie.
I really like the cast of this picture and thought that Brendan Fraser and Rachel Weisz were a good pairing with nice chemistry. I also thought that Fraser and John Hannah had solid camaraderie and it grows throughout the movie.
Arnold Vosloo was a pretty solid choice for Imhotep. He didn’t have to say anything but did a fine job acting with his facial expressions and body language. He was believable as an undead mummy trying to resurrect his long lost Anck-su-namun.
All in all, 1999’s version of The Mummy is much better than the recent Tom Cruise take on the franchise. I’m sure they’ll attempt yet another reboot in the future but this is a hard one to top outside of the 1932 original with the legendary Boris Karloff.
Also, this is the best movie that Stephen Sommers ever made, as everything went downhill from here.
Original Run: February 15th, 2019 – current Created by: Jeremy Carver Directed by: various Written by: various Based on:Doom Patrol by Arnold Drake, Bob Haney, Bruno Premiani, Grant Morrison Music by: Clint Marshall, Kevin Kiner Cast: Diane Guerrero, April Bowlby, Joivan Wade, Alan Tudyk, Matt Bomer, Brendan Fraser, Timothy Dalton, Phil Morris, Curtis Armstrong (voice), Ed Asner (cameo)
Berlanti Productions, Jeremy Carver Productions, DC Entertainment, Warner Bros. Television, 15 Episodes (so far), 45-60 Minutes (per episode)
I wasn’t sure what to think about this show before seeing it. For one, the Titans TV show put out by the same streaming service, DC Universe, was pretty shaky and had a lot of issues. Plus, Doom Patrol is such a bizarre comic, especially during its Grant Morrison run, which this is based off of, that I didn’t know how that would translate to screen.
So I’m glad to say that I was pleasantly surprised by this show and then some. It exceeds my expectations, which is rare in the realm of TV superheroes where the field is dominated by inconsistent and now cancelled Netflix shows, as well as the CW wing of the DC TV universe, which has mostly turned to crap after some solid starts on a few of those shows.
Doom Patrol, however, feels more like AMC’s Preacher or FX’s Legion but without the mental clusterfuckery of the latter.
What makes this so damn solid is the ensemble. Everyone here truly feels at home in their roles and they have stellar chemistry as a group. Plus, adding in Timothy Dalton was a real win for the show.
I’m really glad to see Brendan Fraser in this, as his career has felt like it’s been on a hiatus for quite some time. He is the glue that holds this group together. He plays a conflicted, complex character going through some serious shit but he’s just so good at it.
Also, Diane Guerrero, who I liked on Orange is the New Black, steals the f’n show in every scene that she’s in and that’s a true feat considering how good everyone else is on this show. She plays a character with 64 different personalities and she shows incredible range and talent in her ability to pull them all off and sometimes switch from personality to personality on a dime. It’s very similar to James McAvoy’s character in Split and Glass but Guerrero is really impressive in that she has to pull this off over 15 one hour episodes.
I also really love April Bowlby on this show. I’m mostly only familiar with her role as Kandi on Two and a Half Men, where she was a real highlight of that show. I’ve seen her here and there over the years but man, she shines on this show and I’m glad to see her working on a project that lets her do some real dramatic and emotional work.
The show takes some liberties, as all superhero shows do, but it does feel close to the source material and the spirit and camaraderie of the group is alive and well. While it’s not yet as nutty as Grant Morrison’s material, I think the show does a good job of keeping its bizarreness more palatable for the normies that don’t read the comics.
Unfortunately, being exclusive to DC Universe works against the show. It makes it hard for casual viewers to find it and just six months into its existence, the streaming service is already in trouble. So despite how good this show is and the mostly positive response I’ve seen from others, it’s future is probably in doubt because its home’s future is definitely in doubt.
Rating: 9.25/10 Pairs well with:Legion, Preacher and other TV shows put out by DC Universe, such as Titans and the upcoming Swamp Thing.
Also known as: Dark Sky: First Strike (fake working title), G.I. Joe (Czech Republic, Japan, Spain) Release Date: July 27th, 2009 (Tokyo premiere) Directed by: Stephen Sommers Written by: Stuart Beattie, David Elliot, Paul Lovett, Michael B. Gordon, Stephen Sommers Based on:G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero by Hasbro Music by: Alan Silvestri Cast: Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Christopher Eccleston, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Lee Byung-hun, Sienna Miller, Rachel Nichols, Ray Park, Jonathan Pryce, Said Taghmaoui, Channing Tatum, Arnold Vosloo, Marlon Wayans, Dennis Quaid, Karolína Kurková, Brendan Fraser, Kevin J. O’Connor, Gerald Okamura, Grégory Fitoussi
“Technically, G.I. Joe does not exist, but if it did, it’d be comprised of the top men and women from the top military units in the world, the alpha dogs. When all else fails, we don’t.” – General Hawk
*Let me preface this by saying this review will have a massive amount of profanity. You have been motherfucking warned.
Directed by Stephen Sommers, a man that shouldn’t be allowed to touch a camera after The Mummy Returns and Van Helsing, this movie is a massive piece of shit and a huge disappointment to any fans of G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero, whether in cartoon or comic book form.
I don’t know where to start, as everything about this is bad but I have to point out the biggest issue with it and that’s the fact that it has no idea what G.I. Joe is, who these characters are or why any of this is awesome and really hard to fuck up. That is, unless you’re just someone that doesn’t give a flying fuck about the property your adapting and just see it as nothing more than a cash cow with a massive amount of built-in merchandise already attached to it.
Frankly, Hasbro needs to respect their own properties more and stop whoring them out to anyone willing to write stories and make movies and shows based on them. They’ve forgotten what their core brands represent and why they resonate with people. Between this film and the live action Transformers movies and that awful Jem film, Hasbro needs to get their shit together.
Anyway, they couldn’t have chosen a worse director than Stephen Sommers. Okay, they could’ve gotten Uwe Boll, but his film probably would’ve at least been fun and ridiculous for the right reasons.
What I hate the most about this is that none of the characters apart from the ninjas, are even close to who they are in the cartoon series or the comics. For fuck’s sake, Larry Hama wrote amazing comic stories that all could have translated well to screen. The cartoons even had some great epics mixed in that could have been adapted. Stephen Sommers and his staff of a half dozen writers couldn’t come up with a single scene in a two hour film’s script that represented anything close to what was great about the source material.
One of my favorite characters, the Baroness, wasn’t even close to what her character is. She is an incredible character with a great backstory and is really, the most vicious member of Cobra. Here, she is just a brainwashed American girl that can’t be the badass she should be because she’s got a hard on for Channing Tatum the whole picture and turns back into a good guy and helps defeat Cobra. What in the holy fuck?! This is the goddamned Baroness we’re talking about!
It’s not just her though, Cobra Commander was a joke, Destro was boring, Duke was lame, Ripcord was annoying and Scarlett was so terribly uncharacteristic that she should have just been named Ginger Brainy Girl.
In one of the biggest action sequences in the film, we get Duke and Ripcord running around Paris in generic Iron Man suits. Why? Those suits never existed once in any G.I. Joe continuity that I’ve ever seen and I’ve read and seen everything. This was a poor attempt at trying to piggy back off of the success of Iron Man a year earlier. But, Sommers, this isn’t a Marvel film, it’s G.I.-fucking-Joe!
Also, in the big finale, Cobra Commander tries to destroy the Joes by blowing up the ice shelf above them. What does ice do in water people? It fucking floats! So how in the hell does the ice come crashing down like boulders in the goddamned ocean? How?!
But there’s still so much more wrong with this motion picture.
Why does Snake Eyes have fucking lips?! He’s a ninja in a ninja mask. He doesn’t need rubber lips. His head looks like it was ripped from a full size sex doll.
Why does Duke have to be restrained from punching a hologram? It’s a fucking hologram!
How does Ripcord’s jet plane go from Moscow to Washington in just a few minutes? How?!
I mean, there are a lot of other stupid things in this film too but you probably get the point by now.
G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra was an expensive movie, given to a four year-old, mentally challenged kid, that just wants to play with his G.I. Joe toys in the bathtub. I’m talking about Stephen Sommers, for the record. And while that may sound harsh, it’s not as harsh as Sommers was to this beloved franchise. Fuck this guy, he’s one of the worst directors of the last two decades.
I never wanted to see this film again but I suffered through it just to review it. The sequel to this was actually better but still far from great. Hasbro needs to stop whoring out their properties unless they can learn how to vet these filmmakers better. Seriously, Hasbro, G.I. Joe is a franchise deserving of a great motion picture. Hell, I’ll make it. I can certainly do better than this film and I know these characters because I’ve spent over 35 years with them.
Seriously, Hasbro. Call me.
Rating: 2.75/10 Pairs well with: It’s sequel, as well as the crappy live action Transformers movies.
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