The Mummy Returns

By Mark Ramsey | 2001/05/06

It’s been a while since I’ve been reminded of a certain globe-hopping archeologist and adventurer who fancies a fedora and carries a whip, but damnit if The Mummy Returns doesn’t feed my Indiana jones! This is one rollicking good time, folks.

5,000 years ago, the Scorpion King led a great army to conquer the known world – well, at least the known PG-13 world, since the battle raged for about 60 seconds and was as bloody as a paper-cut.


Is WWF big-cheese and Scorpion King “The Rock” so-called because of the steep cliff between his ledge of hair and the rest of his face? Who would have guessed “The Rock” is short for “Arocknid.” He’s a big King Crab and it made me hungry just looking at him. After the movie I was in a fighting mood, so off to Red Lobster I went, on with my battle bib, and off with the crab legs, limb by limb. Your surly temperament is no match for my trusty fork, Mr. Rock! Yummy!

The Rock is the kind of crab who refers to himself in the third person perhaps because the first and second persons are busy averting their eyes in shame. The Rock’s got this tiny little cartoon head on a big crab body. And it’s so obviously a tiny little cartoon head, you wonder why Brendan Fraser runs away when he should be sitting about six inches from the screen in case Scooby Doo comes on next. This bugger’s less Rock, more Flintstone.

Evil reigns when the Anubis warriors are resurrected from the sands of Egypt in the form of regimented CGI dogs – all of whom fight like G.I. Goofy and P.F.C. Pluto. What kind of Civil War is this, the one between Tom and Jerry or Sylvester and Tweety? It came as no surprise when burrowing up in the midst of the fighting dogs a rabbit inquired “What’s Up, Doc?”

The cartoon dogs tussle with the heroic Ardeth Bay, who bravely gallops to the rescue – rather miraculously considering his horse’s eyes are covered with what looks like carpet remnants.

Brendan and crew are chased by little mummy pygmies – Ewoks with attitude – who scamper about like the evil minions of Betty Boop. These little munchkin beasties blow darts – can they also shoot pool and play foosball?


What happened to revived mummy Im-ho-tep since the first movie, anyway? He looks a little…tubby. Do the sands of Egypt hide secret stashes of Chips Ahoy and Ruffles?

Brendan and Mrs. Brendan steal a chest containing an ancient bracelet. Into their house charges an evil zealot – “I’m looking for the chest,” he says. You’re looking for Carmen Electra’s house, pal, try next door.

Mrs. Brendan saber-fights with the reincarnated Anck-Su-Namun and crouches into a clean split, which has got to be one of the least strategically defensible postures in the “war of gymnastics” handbook. At least she received a “9.5″ from the Egyptian judge!

Why does the mummy always want to eat whatever contraption Brendan is flying in? This time it’s a quaint dirigible. Although I’m guessing a hungry mummy is less a threat than the campfire these knuckleheads build on board, a few feet from a balloon filled with explosive gases! Hello!

Long story short: The Mummy Returns delivers. Large.

Photos Copyright ©2001 Universal Pictures


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