If you remember the movie ‘The Mummy’ from 1999, your childhood was awesome. And in this article, we will review this nostalgic movie from the 90s. The Mummy was based on Egyptian mythology related to the mummies of ancient kings, queens, their subjects, and even animals. Interestingly, the movie is itself a remake of Karl Freund’s The Mummy, made in 1932. This 1932 movie was a supernatural horror movie compared to the fantasy adventure movie of 1999.
Unlike most horror movies that tried to scare audiences using Dracula, ghosts, witches, and whatnot, this movie created the same chilling effects answering the question of what if these mummies could become alive. The Mummy was released theatrically on May 7, 1999. Although the review for the film was diverse, it managed to create its own space in the minds of the audience. Also, its sequels were released later, including The Mummy Returns (2001) and The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor (2008). So, let’s review The Mummy movie to refresh the old masterpiece.
About The Mummy
Stephen Sommers wrote as well as directed The Mummy as a remake of the 1932 film with the same title. It was produced under Alphaville Films while Universal Pictures was its distributor.
This 125-minute-long movie stars Brendan Fraser as an adventurer Rick O’Connell, Academy Award winner Rachel Weisz as Evelyn Carnahan, a librarian and aspiring Egyptologist, and John Hannah as his brother Jonathan Carnahan who discovers a box with a map leading to the city of the dead, Hamunaptra.
Arnold Vosloo is the priest Imhotep having an affair with the mistress of Pharaoh Seti I (Aharon Ipalé), Anck-Su-namun (Patricia Velásquez). Bernard Fox as Captain Winston Havelock, Kevin J. O’Connor as Beni Gabor, Jonathan Hyde as Dr. Allen Chamberlain, Oded Fehr as Ardeth Bay, and Erick Avari as Dr. Terence Bey were other important people in the movie.
The core story revolves around the incomplete affair of priest Imhotep and mistress Anck-Su-namun, who commits suicide in hope of resurrection by the former after her death. But Pharaoh captures Imhotep and buries him alive in a sarcophagus alongwith beetles. And his bodyguards are sworn to prevent Imhotep’s return.
Years later, an adventurer Jonathan, along with his sister Evelyn finds Rick, the discoverer of Hamunaptra, to reveal to him an intricate box and map he stole from him years back. They together make a deal for leads to Hamunaptra. Despite repeated warnings of the Medjai leader, Ardeth Bay, they enter the city and discover the Black Book of the Dead instead of the pure gold-made book of Amun-Ra. They also find canopic jars of Anck-su-namun’s preserved organs and accidentally awaken Imhotep by reading this book aloud.
The chaos begins as Imhotep follows them to Cairo, regenerates himself by killing the American expedition members, and brings the ten plagues back to Egypt. But Ardeth tells them that to resurrect Anck-su-namun, Imhotep wants to sacrifice Evelyn. She believes that the Book of Amun-Ra will kill him again. She surrenders herself to Imhotep so that Rick, Jonathan, and Ardeth find that book and save her.
After some recurring fights with Imhotep’s mummified priests and beetles’ swarms, they rescue Evelyn who reads from Amun-Ra’s Book and makes Imhotep mortal. Rick injures him badly and Imhotep vows revenge. Eventually, Hamunaptra collapses into the sand.
The Mummy Review
The Mummy was a new concept on both the fronts- the story and the special effects. Even though it is less developed than the present-day CGI and VFX, it was nothing less than them. The budget for the Special effects alone was $15 million against the production budget of $80 million for the film. And it was worth it. The Industrial Light & Magic (ILM) did a great job in this respect. The actors were good, especially the Mummy, Arnold. Rachel looked beautiful and strong.
The scenes of Imhotep’s regeneration, the attacks of swarms of flesh-eating beetles, and above all, the big face projected on sand catching the team in a desert storm. You can’t miss out on Jerry Goldsmith and Alexander Courage’s music that was in synchronicity with different scenes enough to scare the hell out of us.
Hence, according to this review, The Mummy is a visual treat to the audience from a time when VFX for still a baby.
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