It was a delight to see both the Mummy and the Mummy Returns on HBOmax. I loved these movies and watched them every time they were on tv. But it has been awhile since I seen them… It is unsettling to know that the movies came out 20 years ago. (It just means that I am getting older… ) But I was able to watch it this past weekend… and I am surprised…. that I still enjoy it. The effects are a bit outdated but even so they were still outstanding. I remember that younger me did have issues with people dealing with things they think they understand… Like you guys should not be down there reading books…. and bringing back mummies who will wipe out all of humanity… but I digress. In a testament to its rewatchability, you can come in at almost any point in The Mummy and you know you’re going to get caught on the couch, watching the next hour unfold.
The Mummy is a 1999 American film written and directed by Stephen Sommers. It is a remake of the 1932 film of the same name (Did you know it was a remake? I didn’t. Good times.) with stars Brendan Fraser, Rachel Weisz, John Hannah, and Kevin J. O’Connor, and Arnold Vosloo. The Mummy was theatrically released on May 7, 1999 and grossed over $416.4 million worldwide against a production budget of $80 million. The film’s success spawned the sequels The Mummy Returns (2001) and The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor (2008) as well as an animated series and the prequel/spin-off film The Scorpion King (2002), which generated its own sequels.
We all know this story… and if you do not… I am sorry for you… you should get on that…. (HBOMax). When I first watched it as a kid… I had no idea that it was about reanimating a thousands year old mummy. There are supposed to be three components of a great blockbuster: heart, humor, and heroics. The Mummy had them all, along with a fourth: horror.
For this post… I am going to take a look at some of moments that I loved or scared me the first time I watched them. I may even throw in some random thoughts I had when watching. So… let’s get to it…
- We are introduced to the backstory that is the catalyst for the movie. The high priest Imhotep has an affair with Anck-su-namun, the mistress of Pharaoh Seti I. Imhotep and Anck-su-namun kill the Pharaoh after he discovers their relationship. (Who has touched you?) Imhotep flees, while Anck-su-namun kills herself, believing that Imhotep can resurrect her. Imhotep and his priests steal her corpse and travel to Hamunaptra, the city of the dead. The resurrection ritual is stopped by Seti’s bodyguards, the Medjai. Imhotep is buried alive with flesh-eating scarab beetles. (Ewwww…) He is sealed away in a sarcophagus at the feet of a statue of the Egyptian god Anubis and kept under strict surveillance by the Medjai, sworn to prevent Imhotep’s return. This is one hell of a start to a movie… and… I felt a bit bad for Imhotep… (suffering the worst curse of being buried alive and eaten alive.) It is still one of the movie openings that I remember to this day. Check out a portion here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u3XXKF0oDtU
- We next see Rick O’connell (Fraser) in the French Foreign Legion. This is the first time we see the relationship between Rick and Beni and it sets the stage for the rest of the movie. One group of Medjai led by Ardeth Bay stand vigil over Hamunaptra, witnessing a garrison of the French Foreign Legion that have found the ruins, setting up their post within the crumbling walls. Rick has been promoted once the leader of the garrison deserts the ruins on horseback, leaving his men on their own. O’Connell leads his fellow Legionnaires into successfully bringing down many Tuaregs, but as the battle wages on, the Tuaregs kill off more and more Legionnaires until only O’Connell himself and Beni are left. O’Connell blasts away many Tuaregs with his pistols, but finds himself outnumbered once his bullets run out. No help from Beni who tried to shut out O’Connell. Running off into the desert, O’Connell notices a group of men on horseback watching him in the distance, Medjai, who decide not to kill him, as the desert would do that. I always laugh at this scene. There is something about Fraser’s facial expressions… that always send me into a fit of giggles.
- We are introduced to Evie who is an aspiring Egyptologist. Everyone remembers her knocking down all the shelves in the library… (For a few laughs… Check out the scene here… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rOZZeuGaQro) Fun Times. But it is when her brother Jonathan says he found something down on a dig in Thebes that turns the course of the movie. Jonathan is hoping that he has found something valuable. Now… I have a friend that doesn’t care for Jonathan…. but unlike Beni…. at least I know whose side Jonathan is on… But at the same time… I understand her sentiments. The object is similar to a puzzle-box and clicks open to reveal eight different-shaped edges and a map made of papyrus. Evie and Jonathan show the item to the museum curator, who dismisses the box and the map inside as nothing more than fakes. Upon examining the box, however, the three scholars learn that the box was actually the key to Hamunaptra, and that the map within must be real. The curator idly holds the map for a moment and inadvertently brushes the paper against a small candle on his desk. The map half-destroyed, the curator states that it was for the best, as men had sought after Hamunaptra for many years, and none had ever found it, with most never returning. My favorite thing about the scene is when Jonathan accuses the curator of setting the map on fire on purpose… and the look on the curators smug face.
- Cut to the jail… Evie learning that Jonathan lied about where he got the artifact. “You lied to me!” “I lie to everyone. What makes you so special?” “I’m your sister!” “Yes, well that only makes you more gullible.” They end up at Cairo Prison. Rick has been taken in under the charge of deserting his post in the French Foreign Legion. He is visited by Evie and Jonathan, who had come to ask about the small puzzle-box that O’Connell found while at Hamunaptra. O’Connell eyes Evie with some interest, and divulged the story of how he had found the box: he had been at the city when he found it. Since Jonathan is the man that picked his pocket and stole the puzzle-box from him, Jonathan was thus punched hard in the face by O’Connell… he deserved that. The great thing about the scene… that Evie just steps over her brother to find out if Rick will tell her how to get to Hamunaptra. Rick kisses her and tells her to get him out of there. At that moment, the guards in the cell seized the American and beat him, taking him away as they did. The warden stepped on the scene and revealed to Evie and her brother that the guards were taking him away to be hanged. Evie attends the hanging, despite the warden’s disapproval, and tries to barter for O’Connell’s freedom as the guards tied the ropes around O’Connell’s neck. I always laugh when the hangman asks if O’Connell has any last requests. When O’Connell responds that he wants to be let go… there is a bit of shock and turns to make sure that he should fulfill that request. Evie has to have a back and forth with the Warden to get O’Connell out… She has to reveal that he knows that location to Hamunaptra. Meanwhile… Rick is dropped from the scaffold… and now he is strangling to death. However, the warden was soon coaxed to release O’Connell as he was offered twenty-five percent of the profits made from the ruins’ discovery. The warden has poor negotiating skills. I watch this scene differently… knowing that Fraser almost choked to death. Poor Guy. Watch the scene here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NW2QM6c1wAI
- River Boat fire anyone…. Even though this is a serious action/adventure scene… the humor here is too much. Rick and Jonathan… Rick and Beni… Rick and Evie… There is a lot to love here. Once on the riverboat, O’Connell and his group meet other men seeking Hamunaptra: three American treasure hunters and their professorial consultant. The Americans make a wager with O’Connell that they would reach the City of the Dead first, which O’Connell sportingly accepts. They claim that they are so confident because they have a guide that had actually been there. (You can tell that Rick thinks that Jonathan talks too much. Rick doesn’t want the Americans to know anything about him or their trip.) Later that night, O’Connell tells Evie of his experience in the ruins, and that he comes armed because something resides in those ruins: evil. Evie, however, does not believe in curses and dismisses the notion of evil lying beneath the sands, hoping instead to find an ancient artifact known as the Book of Amun-Ra; eventually Evie leaves in a huff, leaving O’Connell alone until he meets up with Beni Gabor, whose actions of cowering in the ruins had almost gotten O’Connell killed. Beni reveals that he is leading the Americans to Hamunaptra, but asks why O’Connell, who had never believed in Hamunaptra, is returning. When O’Connell reveals that it is because Evie had saved his life, Beni sarcastically jokes about it: O’Connell not appreciating the humor and subsequently tossing Beni overboard. That night, a number of Medjai come aboard looking for the puzzle box and the map that Evie owns. One Medjai snuck into Evie’s room and holds her at the point of a blade. O’Connell bursts in guns… blazing and sets the room and the subsequently the boat on fire. O’Connell quickly shoots off many of the men, joined by the three Americans, but the Medjai have caused too much damage to the riverboat to remain aboard, compelling O’Connell and all others aboard to jump ship and swim to shore. The passengers all reach the riverbanks safely, but Beni and his employers succeed in obtaining the horses and camels from the boat, leaving O’Connell and his fellows to purchase their own rides at a Bedouin trading post the next morning. I spent a lot of time laughing at Rick and Evie’s interactions in this scene…. First when she storms off… throwing Beni off the boat… and Evie keeping Rick from getting his head blown off. Rick: “Can you swim?!” Evie: “well… yes… if the occasion calls for it!” Rick: Trust me! The occasion calls for it.” Watch the scene here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dZBkTm19fmM
- The race to the ruins is hilarious. Rick’s team has purchased camels since Beni’s group has all the horses. Traveling through the night… they wait for the sun rise to be “shown the way.” (It was the sleeping while riding the camel. I would never be able to do that. NEVER. I would be face down in the sand.) Then they resume their journey, each group racing against the other to reach the city first. The group consisting of Evie, O’Connell, Jonathan, and the Warden win the race, reaching the ruins before the others do. Beni processed to try and thrash O’Connell but O’Connell gets the best of him and throws him off the horse. (It makes me laugh every time.) Once camp is being set up, the Americans take the best areas to search for treasures to themselves, as the smaller group searches for openings to the chambers below. The funniest thing about this was… Rick trying to impress Evie with a kit he stole from the Americans. Watch the scene here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iBTmNvvdpic The stuttering… the glances and then the “What are you looking at?!” to the warden. Too Funny. Also have to enjoy the misogyny from the Egyptologist. Making their way to the underground chambers, the group headed by O’Connell searches through the tunnels for any areas in which to dig and find treasures. Reaching the base of the statue of Anubis, the four treasure hunters begin to hear strange sounds coming from around the statue; guns out in the open, they turn around to face the source of the sounds, coming instead face-to-face with the rival group, also armed. With both groups meeting in the same area, the argument over the right to dig at the statue base begins, ending with the Americans and their diggers winning the statue base; as Evie notices quietly that there is another chamber below, she surrenders the chamber to the larger group.
- O’Connell, Evie and Jonathan believe that they can find the secret compartment that houses the Book of Amun-Ra, and take it while the Americans are all distracted. As they are working on the ceilings, the Warden separates himself from the rest of the group, making his way through a passageway where he finds an elaborate mural on the wall. On the mural are several shiny stones, which the Warden identifies as precious and begins to pry off the walls with a knife. (My friend and I wondered why anyone would look at the hieroglyphics and think… “Oh… that’s blue gold.”) Jonathan manages, by accident, to find a compartment where a sarcophagus is stored, releasing a large stone coffin. While the two others present stand in awe at this find, the Warden is still prying stones off the walls elsewhere, until one stone, having missed his bag and fallen onto the floor, cracks open, revealing a living scarab beetle, that tears open the Warden’s shoe and eats its way up the Warden’s skin. (I remember when I first watched this scene for the first time… I remember being super grossed out.) The other three examine the sarcophagus that has fallen from the ceiling, and deduce that the puzzle box that had been the cause of the Medjai attack on the riverboat is the key to opening the sarcophagus. There attention is turned to the warden who kills himself because of the scarab. Eventually… after the Medjai tell them to leave Hamunaptra, (not to mention the I AM A LIBRARIAN scene…lol….), the treasure seekers of both expeditions return to the tunnels and chambers below: the Americans and their diggers returning to the compartment at the base of the statue, where they extract a wooden chest. As the three Americans step forward to pry the chest open, the Egyptologist informs them that the chest has a curse placed upon it. The Americans do not believe in the curse, although the Egyptologist warned them all that the curse would strike them all were they to open the chest. Regardless of the given consequences, the four Americans proceed to force open the chest, as Beni and their diggers run off in fear, thus putting them in danger in the event that the mummy was resurrected. The smaller group finds another item: a mummy that was preserved inside of the sarcophagus that they had found earlier. Oddly, his skeleton is entirely intact, and there are scarab skeletons inside the sarcophagus as well. The mummy had been buried alive and had managed to claw a message into the wall of his sarcophagus: “Death is only the beginning”. That night, as both expeditions talk about their findings over a campfire, Evie noticed that the Egyptologist has found the Book of the Dead and is attempting to pry it open with his hands, to no avail. Bad news abounds.
- Cut to her reading from the damn book. No harm came from reading from a damn book. Right? (GIRL WHAT ARE YOU DOING??? WHY? STOP THIS!!??? Later, when everyone is asleep, Evie steals the Book of the Dead from the Egyptologist’s grip (in true Jonathan or Rick fashion) and uses the key to open the locks. Evie then opens the Book and begins to read the words aloud, not knowing that the mummy found below in the chambers is awakening. Dr. Chamberlain awakes screaming at Evie to not read from the Book, but the damage has been done. A swarm of locusts flies out over the horizon, engulfing the camp and its residents entirely. The expeditions are separated: the three Americans run down the corridors with a number of their diggers, but Burns, one of the three Americans, trips and falls, losing his glasses, which are crushed by Beni as he attempts to reach the others. Unable to see where he is, Burns stumbles about the corridors blindly, seeing a fuzzy-looking figure at the end of the corridor, but unable to see who it is. The figure sneaks up from behind him and attacks Burns as he screams in terror. O’Connell, Evie and Jonathan run through one corridor trying to escape the man-eating scarab swarms. Evie is separated from the others and falls through a trapdoor in the wall and finds herself in a dark chamber where she sees Burns, his back turned to her. When she tries to talk to Burns and possibly get her to protect him… Burns turns around to reveal that his eyes and tongue have been torn out. (That shook young me.) Evie is caught by the mummy… (the same one that her and the guys found.) The mummy has Burn’s eyes and tongue. Imhotep. The mummy walks towards her, believing her to be Anck-Su-Namun, and roars in anger when approached by O’Connell, Jonathan and the two Americans. O’Connell roars back in mock gesture and blasts Imhotep in two with his elephant gun, allowing the others to escape. The Medjai arrive and give Burns back to the Americans. Though at first Rick believes the Medjai to be responsible, the Medjai explain that they had in fact rescued Burns and he was lucky to survive before the creature could finish his work. Commanding them all to leave, Ardeth declared that his fellow warriors will go on the hunt and try to find the means to kill the mummy. Imhotep is walking plague upon all the earth. Ardeth Bay, explains that because they did not leave, they have brought forth an ancient suppressed evil that has been feared by the Medjai for over three thousand years, and Ardeth Bay informs O’Connell, who had shot the mummy, that mortal weapons cannot kill the creature as he is not of the mortal world. (I think it probably would have been effective if the medjai just explained why they shouldn’t be here.) Beni, on the other hand, who has been separated from the rest of the group, wanders the catacombs and finds himself face to face with the mummy; Beni tries to plead for his life with religious icons from different beliefs, but only the Star of David, the Hebrew symbol, appeals to Imhotep, who knows that it is the symbol of the former slaves. Imhotep declares that he has use for Beni, and that in exchange for his servitude, he would be rewarded greatly. (When Beni pulled out all the chains, I was floored… it was also the glaring indication to me that he was not going to make it. He had no real principles or morals…) Check out the scene here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4dyWUrXZG_w and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pDWR5RkWRTY
- After everyone returns to Cairo… Rick says they should depart for parts unknown and leave the mummy to the Medjai. (Now…. he was a part of this nonsense…. and now he wants to leave. COME ON, RICK!) Evie wants to return to Hamunaptra as soon as possible to fix the issue that she helped cause, but O’Connell tries to persuade her to do otherwise. Unable to convince Evie, O’Connell leaves her quarters to have a drink in a bar, where he finds Winston Havelock, an aging British airplane pilot that rues not having died in battle, who drunkenly laments his predicament aloud before leaving. O’Connell then meets up with Jonathan, Daniels and Henderson, the latter two planning to leave Cairo for Alexandria with Burns, but the boat will not leave until the next morning. Meanwhile, Burns, who remains in his quarters, meets with the mummy himself, who Burns is informed is a prince seeking to buy Burns’ canopic jar. Imhotep wears a mask and long dark robes to conceal his identity, with Beni as a mediator. Beni informs Burns that “Prince Imhotep” thanks the American for his hospitality, as well as his eyes and tongue, but Imhotep’s work is not yet complete. He proceeds to drain the life out of Mr. Burns as he screams in terror. (I would say poor Burns… but the older I get… I feel like he and all the group should have left well enough alone.) Henderson and Daniels toast O’Connell and Jonathan with a drink, but promptly spit it out, along with the other bar patrons once they see that it is blood, that is running from a fountain in the bar. (GROSS!!!!!) At that moment, thunder crashes and hail and fireballs rain from the sky, destroying buildings and incinerating people. During this, O’Connell finds Beni and attempts to force him to tell where he’s been, but a loud roar from upstairs of the building that Beni emerged from distracts them all, and O’Connell and Evie rush in to find Burns body. At the end of the room, in front of the fireplace stands Imhotep, already regenerating. O’Connell begins firing at the corpse but the shots do nothing, nor do those of Jonathan, Henderson and Daniels, who all open fire as well. The mummy throws O’Connell clear across the room, knocking down the other three men before proceeding to lean forward to Evie, thanking her for bringing him back from the Underworld. Imhotep attempts to kiss Evie but her cat Cleo makes her presence known by standing on the keys of a piano in the room; terrified at the cat, Imhotep groans aghast and departs the room in the form of a sandstorm out the window. I have come to enjoy Jonathan’s narration of the plagues…
- Evie says that she is going to the only man she knows who will have the answers…. I should have known it would be her boss… The survivors (O’Connell, Evie, Jonathan, Daniels and Henderson) all head to the Cairo Museum, seeking the help of Dr. Bey. They found Dr. Bey in the company of the chieftain of the Medjai himself, Ardeth Bay… The three Americans and Jonathan point their pistols in their direction as Evie asks what the Medjai is doing there, to which Dr. Bey calmly asks them to lower their pistols so that they might explain. The curator goes on to explain that the Medjai are an ancient society that devoted itself to the protection of mankind for the past three thousand years, guarding the city of Hamunaptra from thieves and those that might activate the curse of the mummy, a goal which, thanks to Evie, has been brought to ruin. Evie is appalled that they are justifying killing of innocent people…. (Innocent…?) Dr. Bey explains that Imhotep, in his undead form, fears cats because they are the guardians of the Underworld and will fear them until he regenerates, at which point he will fear nothing, Daniels and Henderson being especially fearful of how the mummy regenerates. Evie notes that while the group was in Hamunaptra, the mummy called her “Anck-Su-Namun” and while they were in Burns’ quarters, he attempted to kiss her: Dr. Bey notes that Imhotep was cursed for his love of Anck-Su-Namun and that even after three thousand years he is still in love with her, (now…. that is love.) intending to bring her back from the dead and use Evie as the sacrificial victim needed. As Jonathan remarks that it’s bad luck, Dr. Bey states that it might give them the time needed to kill Imhotep, but Ardeth Bey looks up through the museum skylight to see that the sun is being blocked out, a sign that the mummy’s powers are growing. I enjoy that the Medjai called out our “heroes.” You started this mess. Later, at the residence where the survivors are staying, Evie asks who was present when the chest was opened: Burns, Henderson, Daniels and the Egyptologist, Dr. Chamberlain; Beni ran in fear before they could open the chest. Evie notes that they must rescue the Egyptologist and bring him back to Fort Brydon before the mummy can reach him.
- Evie asks who was present when the chest was opened: Burns, Henderson, Daniels and the Egyptologist, Dr. Chamberlain; Beni ran in fear before they could open the chest. Evie notes that they must rescue the Egyptologist and bring him back to Fort Brydon before the mummy can reach him; O’Connell agrees, ordering Evie to stay. Got to love the way everyone protests O’Connell… (I am torn between loving O’Connell for taking charge and wanting to protect Evie… but also… the way he demands she just do it.) Out of all people, he leaves with Jonathan. I guess that is not so shocking since he has been on the whole expedition with him. The Egyptologist runs through the streets of Cairo with a canopic jar and the Book of the Dead, unnerved at the sudden darkness and unknowing that Imhotep, clad in ragged black robes and a hood, is hunting him. His run doesn’t last long… has he is hunted down and sucked dry. Poor Guy. Taking the jewelled canopic jar from Chamberlain’s withered grip, Imhotep turns around to face the window, revealing a face slightly more regenerated before dislocating his jaw to let loose a massive swarm of locusts, which swarm all around the locals as Imhotep strides through them. Beni, taking advantage of the Egyptologist’s disappearance, proceeds to ransack his office, looking for the Book of the Dead when O’Connell and Jonathan find him. Beni attempts to escape but O’Connell throws a chair at him, impeding him from jumping out the window. O’Connell demands to know what Beni is doing with Imhotep and what he gets out of it, to which Beni responds that as long as he serves Imhotep, he is immune from Imhotep’s powers. (“It is better to be at the right hand of the Devil… than in his path.” Well this can’t be true given what happens to Beni.) Demanding to know what Beni is after, O’Connell lifts the Hungarian up by his shirt towards the ceiling fan, at which point Beni reveals all: the Book of the Dead is what Imhotep wants and he told Beni that it would be worth its weight in gold. Beni goes on to say that Imhotep plans to use it to bring his “dead girlfriend” back to life, but that other than the Book and Evie, he wants nothing. About to say more, Beni is cut off when a loud screaming sounds outside, and Beni takes advantage of the three’s distraction by kneeing O’Connell in the groin and jumping out the window, escaping. I used to wonder why Beni wasn’t done away with earlier in the movie…. He has had to double cross a lot of people in his time…. I have only settled on that it has to be comic relief.
- Now that the Egyptologist has been taken out… that leaves Henderson and Daniels. Daniels’ unease grows with having to guard the door and leaves to get a drink. Henderson proceeds to watch the door alone when the window opens with a blast of wind and sand, at which point Henderson is lifted up in the sandy cloud and sucked devoid of organs. The sand settles and Imhotep, almost entirely regenerated, strides toward the door, passing the corpse of Henderson. Imhotep enters the locked room by taking the form of sand and slipping through the keyhole, coming up on the other side to find Evie sleeping. Imhotep softly utters “Anck-Su-Namun”, shuts his eyes and kisses her, indifferent to her waking up screaming as his face starts to decay. What is the thing about Evie being kissed against her will? O’Connell and Jonathan burst in, O’Connell yelling at Imhotep to get away from Evie; Imhotep hisses a retort in ancient Egyptian and O’Connell picks up Cleo, Evie’s cat, brandishing her at Imhotep, who roars in fear and blasts his way out the window. Obviously, the plan to protect everyone is not working and going down the tube pretty quickly. Check out the scene here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K58cPYCTiPM
- O’Connell, Evie, Jonathan and Daniels are the only survivors and head to the museum to seek help from Dr. Bey and Ardeth Bay in examining the artifacts on display for clues as to the location of the Book of Amun-Ra, which can kill Imhotep, when they hear chanting outside and look through the window to see the people of Cairo, plagued with boils and sores. They march in a massive crowd chanting Imhotep’s name; they have become his slaves. (I think that… this scene freaked me out the most. The townspeople then proceed to try to break through the museum doors as Evie and Dr. Bey read from a slab covered in hieroglyphs, and Evie concludes that the Book of Amun-Ra is back at Hamunaptra inside the statue of Horus (god). Jonathan runs out to start the car for an escape and is almost caught by the enslaved townspeople but throws them off the trail by acting zombified himself, and he runs to the car, bringing it to the museum entrance where the five others escape the museum. Beni, however, catches them and alerts Imhotep to their presence (Beni is the worst. Throughtout the whole movie… the absolute worst. Jonathan is not this bad.): the mummy roars, and his minions pursue the car through the streets of Cairo. When a large crowd of them blocks the road, the car drives through them, and is covered quickly in minions who attempt to wrest the passengers out of the car, succeeding in throwing Daniels out, who is backed up into a corner and fires his guns at the enslaved villagers, quickly running out of bullets as Imhotep himself strides in. Daniels, in fear for his life, presents the canopic jar and Imhotep roars furiously, proceeding to kill Daniels and take his organs. Even Beni can’t handle the sight.
- The remaining five drive through Cairo when the car crashes and the enslaved villagers swarm all around them, blocking the exits: Imhotep then walks coolly through them, fully regenerated and asking Evie to come with him, in exchange for sparing her friends’ lives. Reluctantly, Evie steps forward as O’Connell tries to stop her but Evie states that Imhotep still needs to take her back to Hamunaptra to complete the ritual. (Ardeth Bey points out that… She is right… It does nothing to help O’Connell feel better or Jonathan for that matter.) Leaving the scene, Imhotep goes back on his word and orders his slaves to kill the survivors as Beni pilfers the puzzle box from Jonathan. The survivors escape the slaves by diving down a sewer, with the exception of Dr. Bey, who stays behind to fight the minions at the cost of his life, allowing the others to escape. The next day, O’Connell, Jonathan and Ardeth Bay reach the Royal Air Force Airfield on the outskirts of Erfoud, where they find Winston Havelock, who asks about the mission, wondering if it is a deadly one, to which O’Connell insists that it is, and that he likely won’t survive through it. Winston is stoked to hear that he will likely go down in flames. (I am not even sure that stoked is the right word.) Upon hearing that it is a “kill the bad guy, rescue the damsel in distress, save the world” challenge, Winston accepts happily, offering his biplane, which has only room for a pilot and gunner: Jonathan and Ardeth are tied to the plane’s wings and the pursuit begins. Imhotep has reached the desert with Evelyn and Beni in tow when he hears engines roaring in the sky and Evelyn looks hopefully up, knowing that O’Connell has returned for her. Imhotep, however, fights back by summoning all the sands of the desert and unleashing a vast sandstorm that pursues the plane throughout the desert. (Obviously, the desert is not for me… I really have a hard time with sand… so a being that can manipulate sand would take me out very easily.) The plane is soon engulfed in the desert sands as Imhotep attempts to kill O’Connell and his friends by causing the sandstorm to literally swallow the plane; Evelyn takes action and kisses Imhotep fully on the lips, ending his grip on the sandstorm but the plane crashes. Thinking the plane’s passengers dead, Imhotep calmly stride over to the ruins of Hamunaptra with Beni and a distraught Evelyn; the plane’s passengers, however, escape the wreckage alive, save for Winston, whose neck was broken in the sandstorm. The plane then begins to sink into the desert sands, taking Winston’s body with it, as O’Connell, Jonathan and Ardeth Bay pay Winston a silent salute at his help. I wanted to feel sad for Winston but he really wanted that heroes death…. so there wasn’t much to be sad about.
- Ardeth, Jonathan, and O’Connell make to Hamunaptra and try to pry their way into the tunnels. Well mostly, Ardeth and O’Connell doing the hard work…. Jonathan is standing around barking orders… It makes a normal person want to punch him. On top of that…he starts playing with the scarab beetle. O’Connell (and Ardeth) have to stop what they are doing to cut out the bug and kill it giving away their position to the Imhotep. Jonathan can be funny but sometimes he is annoying. Imhotep hears the gunshot echo from the halls, knowing that O’Connell and his friends have survived. (Thanks Jonathan.) Imhotep reaches into the broken canopic jar that once had held Anck-Su-Namun’s heart and pulls out the organ, holding it in his hand before crushing it to dust and blowing it against a stone mural of two priests. Muttering an incantation, Imhotep brings the stone priests to life; the priests in the mural are two of his priests from ancient times who had been mummified alive by being encased within the walls. Imhotep gives them the order to kill O’Connell and awaken the other priests. The priests converge on our 3 guys but the guys are more than prepared. The three men take out their guns and begin to blast the mummies away, heading to the statue of Horus so as to find the Golden Book. Once O’Connell, Jonathan and Ardeth reach the statue of Horus, O’Connell and Jonathan begin to try and pry its compartment open as Ardeth provides cover fire. Once the compartment is opened, the Golden Book is extracted and Ardeth tells O’Connell and Jonathan to save Evelyn and kill the mummy off, leading the mummies away as he runs through a corridor, blasting as many as he can. O’Connell then lights a stick of dynamite and throws it into a dead end, blowing a hole through the wall and killing off more mummies: O’Connell and Jonathan then make their way through the hole and into the sacrificial chamber. I think my favorite thing about this scene… has to be when the priests appear and both Beni and Evie are startled by what they see. These two end up fighting with each other in the background while Imhotep gives instructions. The other funny thing….. O’Connell strikes the match on Ardeth Bey’s beard.
- What is Beni doing during the search for the the Golden Book? Looting as much treasures as he can, loading a satchel of the pilfered gold and jewels onto the camels of the legionnaires that still linger about the ruins. The gold that he has collected, however, does not seem enough, so Beni returns inside, taking more treasures out. See? He could have rode off into the sunset…. but he never seemed that bright… so there you have it. Imhotep, having chained Evelyn to a sacrificial altar, begins to perform the incantations that would bring Anck-Su-Namun back, almost stabbing Evelyn fatally before Jonathan intervenes. While Jonathan stands at the height of a staircase brandishing the Book of Amun-Ra, (so much for the art of surprise…. but one could argue that was lost a while ago.) O’Connell sneaks into the chamber, takes a golden sword from a nearby statue, and begins take down the mummy priests, cutting Evelyn’s chains as he does. Jonathan then mistakenly summons up even more of the mummies, all sporting soldier garb and spears, compelling O’Connell to duel more of them. Dueling them on, O’Connell manages to destroy more as he runs down the stairs of the sacrificial chamber, decapitating two and burning one up until they finally outnumber and overpower him at the point of their spears, sickles and blades. Before they can bring down their attacks, however, the mummies are stopped by Jonathan, who reads the final incantations for the spell that summoned the mummies up, stopping them from harming O’Connell. Removing their blades from his face, the mummies stand motionless until Jonathan gives them the order to kill Anck-Su-Namun, which they carry out at once, despite Imhotep ordering them to kill O’Connell. Gotta love Evie screaming at her brother to finish the incantation so he can control the mummies. Also the way Jonathan just drops the book when Imhotep comes after him. He tries to get the book, but he is too late to save Anck-Su-Namun, who is hacked to death by the mummified guards. In anger, Imhotep lunges forward to strangle Jonathan, but O’Connell leaps forward and chops off the mummy’s arm, which holds onto Jonathan’s neck, the arm’s rotted sinews reveal that below his human appearance, the mummy is still a dead man inside. (Gross…. but not unexpected. And he even grabs the arm and reattaches it.) Jonathan searches through Imhoteps robes (left behind after his arm was cut off.) and takes the puzzle box needed to open the Book of Amun-Ra, using it to open the Book as Evelyn reads through it, looking for the spell that would stop Imhotep. Imhotep throws O’Connell against statues and the floor until he seizes O’Connell up by his throat, strangling him, and prepares to deliver his final attack, unhinging his jaw. Evelyn, however, reads aloud the incantations to stop Imhotep, summoning the god Anubis, who rides into the chamber on his chariot and drives through Imhotep, taking away his immortality. Anubis has not, however, killed Imhotep, and Imhotep moves forward furiously towards O’Connell, intending to kill him, but O’Connell is ready with his sword, impales the priest as he lunges forward. Evelyn reveals that Imhotep is mortal, and the mummy steps back dying into a moat, dying while numerous souls engulf him, reducing him to a mummy once more as he utters his final words: “Death is only the beginning.”
- Beni is walking with a saddlebag full of stolen valuables from the treasuries, triggering the collapse of Hamunaptra by leaning the bag on a lever on the wall. Now here he is ruining things all over again. He could have left when he had the chance… I know I said it before, but it definitely needs repeating. O’Connell, Jonathan and Evelyn, hear the walls crumbling, take the opportunity to leave, though Jonathan has tripped on a staircase and drops the Book of Amun-Ra in a moat; Evelyn chastises Jonathan for dropping the Book before O’Connell and Jonathan hurry her along. Jonathan wants to grab something valuable on the way out. But I mean really… you guys have caused enough trouble. As they are escaping the crumbling ruins, a familiar face follows them: Beni, who had tried to catch up with O’Connell, but could not make it through a collapsing doorway in time. O’Connell, despite Beni’s previous betrayals, makes an effort to help Beni out of the chamber, but could not pull him out in time as the doorways closes, sealing Beni in. (O’Connell is much better than me… because Beni would not do the same for him….A scarab appears atop a statue’s head and hisses menacingly at Beni, who tries to stave the bug off with his torch. With this, swarms of the scarabs came out to greet a horrified Beni. He tries to stave them off as well, only succeeding in causing more to emerge. Beni stands in the treasury trembling and whimpering with terror as his torch quickly dies out, leaving Beni to be devoured alive in the pitch black darkness. O’Connell, Evelyn and Jonathan run quickly from the ruins, reaching the surface as it crashes down in a massive series of dusty explosions. Once the trio have escaped, a hand reached out to Jonathan: Ardeth has escaped the ruins alive, astride a camel, and informs them that they have earned the respect of the Medjai for their defeat of Imhotep. (Jump scare for young me… but thank goodness Ardeth Bey is alive and well.) Blessing them in Allah’s name, Ardeth rides off into the sunset, leaving them behind as Jonathan complains that they go home empty-handed, but O’Connell says that he, at least, is not empty-handed, as he has found Evelyn, kissing her deeply. Gotta love Jonthan’s gagging sound. The three survivors then mount camels and ride off into the sunset, unaware that they have some treasures with them in a saddlebag, courtesy of Beni.
The Mummy always delivers… I always watch it and I feel the same way I do as when I first watch it. Although, older me… does see the downside of people riding into a place they really know nothing about and not listening to locals and ruining things. The whole cast is fantastic. There are often comparisons between Rick O’Connell and Indiana Jones but I think that Rick holds his own. There’s a lot of funny dialogue in the movie. I was 12 at the time of the Mummy… so this was the first time I was into an action adventure movie…. Anyway good times…. Next look… The Mummy Returns.
If you love this movie…. let me know in the comments, your favorite scene and your favorite movie line. That is all for now.