starring Tom Cruise, Sofia Boutella, Annabelle Wallis, Russell Crowe
screenplay by David Koepp and Christopher McQuarrie and Dylan Kussman
directed by Alex Kurtzman
by Walter Chaw It took me a while but it finally clicked about an hour into Alex Kurtzman's hilarible The Mummy that the whole thing wasn't a really bad movie, but a really bad videogame in bad-movie form. It has the same alternating cadence of leaden exposition drop, interminable and hideously- animated/performed cut-scene, and standard FPS-strictured gameplay culminating in a boss fight. Envisioned as the launch for Universal's "Dark Universe" franchise (in which the pantheon of classic Universal Monsters are given gritty action reboots, League of Extraordinary Gentlemen-style), it finally functions as a first-generation "Resident Evil" port in which the dialogue, for what it's worth, was written in Japanese, translated into English, and performed by 64 pixels stacked on top of each other. Awkward doesn't begin to describe the desperation with which all involved try to seductively reveal/hide their Dark Universe™ Easter eggs while hobbling from one big, button-geeking, CGI-hobbled moment to the next. Look, behind those dust zombies: it's Dr. Frankenstein's lab!