|Stephen Sommers, director and writer of The Mummy Returns has taken the original cast of the first Mummy movie and thrown them into another "race to save the world" that is delightfully funny, just like the first film in this series. After seeing the movie, I was glad that the filmmakers decided to keep in the slap-stick element to the script. This ability of the actors to make fun of themselves and the predicament they were in allows the film to become more than just a summer action blockbuster.|
It is a very rare occurance that a sequel can live up to its predecessor and I think The Mummy Returns does a fantastic job of doing just that. Perhaps it is the return of the entire cast (excepting anyone who didn't get "offed" in the first one, of course . . . well, except for the Mummy) that makes the film so enjoyable. Playing a married couple now in this sequel, Brenden Frasier and Rachel Weisz have a son and thankfully that son, played by Freddie Boath, is not a whinning annoyance through the film.
Sometimes, children in action films can become cumbersome and uninteresting, but the little chap they picked to play Rick Jr. is a fun addition to the cast. I was also glad to see the return of John Hannah as Jonathan (though why isn't he on the movie poster??) and Arnold Vosloo as Im-ho-tep. Hannah provides the more than just comic relief in this sequel and I think his character is better for it. And it is doubtful anyone else other than Arnold Vosloo could play the part of the mummy.
Also in the cast, with a larger part, is Patricia Velazquez who plays the mummy's girlfriend, Anck-su-namun. Her part in the first film was far too small and in this sequel, she is one of the most interesting characters. Though who can forget everyone's favorite character, Ardeth Bey, played by Oded Fehr. It's got to be those tatoos. And in this film bey's character is joined by a multitude of fellow warriors in some of the most spectacular special effects shots in the film.
In fact, the special effects in this film are actually better than the first! The creators did amazing things with wildlife and water that look absolutely real. And a fun addition to this film that was not in the original is a hot-air balloon. Well, it's really a dirigible, but it's fun nonetheless. The driver of the balloon, played by Shaun Parkes is a great addition to the cast too. He's got a great delivery. An interesting addition is that of the rock (Dwayne Johnson) as the Scorpian King.
It will be neat to find out if the third movie in the series (and you know they're probably already in pre-production) with be based on his character. With all the additions to the cast, and the many cast members who return in the sequel, you might think that the film has too much going on in it. But the large and varied cast is exactly what makes it such an epic film. This movie is by no means a vehicle for just one star. There are several characters to identify with and root for. A part of this film I absolutely loved was the series of flashbacks shown throughout the movie. They were very colorful and realistic and gave this sequel the little push that it needed to be a great film.
Review by Kelsey Wyatt.