A terrifying, yet lighter series than the last few reviews, The Mummy is one of the many reasons I was so interested in Egyptology as a kid – and, well, now. I love O’Connell (Brendan Frasier), Evy (Rachel Weisz), Jonathan (John Hannah), and, the mummy himself, Imhotep (Arnold Vosloo). The story is so enchanting, yet so scary that a preteen will swoon at George of the Jungle while hiding their face behind their hands (i.e. me). I honestly think of this one as a classic now, as well. It’s on television enough that it must be viewed widely by us nostalgics or, fingers-crossed, by some new blood.
So, O’Connell is an American that found the lost city of Hamunaptra, along with Beni (Kevin O’Connor), who deserted. O’Connell therein meets the Medjai, protectors of the lost city, and is captured later for some offending action. Set to be executed, he is saved by the exquisite librarian, Evy and her goofy brother, Jonathan. He steals a kiss and off they go to the City of the Dead (Hamunaptra). On the way, they meet the group of Americans that Beni is leading to Hamunaptra and Jonathan takes on a bet: first to the city wins.
The Medjai attack the river boat our team is on and they are forced to take camels the rest of the way. Once they reach the city – Evy wins of course – Evy, Jonathan, and O’Connell uncover the burial site of Imhotep, discovering that he was buried alive, eaten by scarabs, and cursed. The team of Americans, led by Egyptologist Dr. Allen Chamberlain, discover the book of the dead, and Imhotep’s canopic jars. Evy lets curiosity get the better of her and she reads aloud from the book, awakening the Mummy.
Fear ensues, as Imhotep tracks down and kills the Americans who stole his organs and kidnaps Evy in order to resurrect his lady love, Anck Su Namun. There is more to that story, but it comes in the later films.They obviously tamp him down, with the help of Evy and Jonathan’s brilliant language skills, and the romance ensues and they abscond with the treasure of Hamunaptra, becoming crazy wealthy. No major spoilers there, I trust. There are a few more films to follow these, but none come close to the original.
My final thoughts: George of the Jungle in rough and tumble cowboy Edwardian clothes equals my favorite go-to film for just about every horror film fest. Also, Rachel Weisz as Evy is a goddess, no faults accepted.