Critics Consensus

Critics Consensus: The Mummy Gets Embalmed

Plus, it's a Swing and a miss for Vote.

by | July 31, 2008 | Comments

This week at the movies, we’ve got eerie excavations (The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor, starring Brendan Fraser and Jet Li) and back-woods balloters (Swing Vote, starring Kevin Costner and Kelsey Grammer). What do the critics have to say?

Critics are comparing the third installment of the Mummy series, Tomb of the Dragon Emperor, to an Egyptian burial shrine — not because it contains visual opulence, but because it’s more than a little musty. Brendan Fraser returns as Rick, an intrepid explorer whose latest mission finds him in Asia, where he has to contend with an army of terra cotta warriors led by an ancient emperor (Jet Li). Let’s face it: the appeal of Mummy movies was their B-movie swashbuckling, not emotional heft or serious thematic resonance. But pundits say Tomb fails even at that modest level, featuring soulless CG effects, a notable lack of energy from the cast, and an overall lack of fun. At 11 percent on the Tomatometer, The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor is easily the worst-reviewed entry in a series the critics say is probably ready for embalming. It’s also one of the worst-reviewed films of the year. (Check out this week’s Total Recall, in which we provide an overview of Jet Li’s best-reviewed films.)

Turns out Jet Li is the center of the universe.

We’ve seen some recent national elections come down to a few hundred votes, but what if the presidency was decided by a single ballot? It’s an inspired premise, one that critics say unfortunately pays only intermittent dividends in Swing Vote. Kevin Costner stars as Bud Johnson, an amiable, slothful average Joe who, through a technical error, becomes the deciding vote in a presidential election; as a result, he’s heavily courted by the candidates while trying to do right by his daughter. The pundits say Swing Vote has moments of gentle charm, but it’s too predictable and lacks the sharp bite required to make it truly successful satire. At 37 percent on the Tomatometer, a recount isn’t going to save Swing Vote.

“Don’t ever get drunk and go on eBay again!”

Also opening this week in limited release:

  • In Search of a Midnight Kiss, an indie comedy about a lonely guy looking for a smooch on New Year’s Eve, is at 89 percent.

  • America the Beautiful, a documentary about how the fashion industry negatively contributes to Americans’ obsession with their looks, is at 80 percent.

  • Frozen River, an indie drama about how a woman’s desperate search for her husband gets her involved in the trafficking of illegal immigrants, is at 78 percent.

  • Profit Motive and the Whispering Wind, a doc that poetically examines the gravesites of a variety of important historical figures, is at 80 percent.

  • The Helena Bonham-Carter-toplined Sixty Six, a British coming-of-age comedy about a boy who’s torn between attending his Bar Mitzvah and watching the World Cup, is at 60 percent.

    His attempts at water polo were less successful.

    Recent Kevin Costner Movies:

Tag Cloud

Walt Disney Pictures name the review south america crossover mutant dragons television dc San Diego Comic-Con Emmys Marvel Television dramedy talk show finale Awards Thanksgiving blockbuster Red Carpet Masterpiece Photos TruTV zombie slashers TV renewals HBO CNN X-Men Teen Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Acorn TV Creative Arts Emmys VICE BET Trailer AMC Kids & Family Interview A&E werewolf boxoffice book Spike space Ellie Kemper Lionsgate American Society of Cinematographers foreign vampires IFC Films 24 frames Cannes franchise TCA Winter 2020 Television Academy Countdown Rom-Com cancelled TV shows Fox News DC Comics cancelled television supernatural cats singing competition The CW TCA reviews Watching Series christmas movies canceled cults Captain marvel The Purge halloween Shondaland true crime BBC America Amazon Adult Swim composers Tarantino ABC Family Star Wars 2015 Universal Mary Poppins Returns Mary poppins SDCC Amazon Prime Funimation Crunchyroll MTV directors movies period drama Sci-Fi jamie lee curtis festivals Amazon Studios aliens Anna Paquin children's TV Paramount Network crime thriller versus Calendar Grammys CMT LGBTQ OWN universal monsters dogs Food Network Toys serial killer Mudbound TCM Hallmark Christmas movies USA Sundance Now Pride Month video politics Marathons MSNBC Nat Geo TLC New York Comic Con Quiz Summer President TV harry potter Sneak Peek rotten movies we love WarnerMedia miniseries cancelled TV series Black History Month DGA Pop TV FXX Travel Channel thriller Western ABC National Geographic WGN psycho strong female leads RT History CBS All Access The Arrangement sitcom hispanic Writers Guild of America Freeform Sony Pictures spanish language Elton John unscripted Best and Worst PaleyFest green book cinemax spider-man dceu History Country Fantasy Disney+ Disney Plus Action See It Skip It streaming Valentine's Day Apple TV+ Starz romance Trivia Pixar Reality Competition docudrama justice league nature Cosplay casting Warner Bros. robots 2017 RT21 Lifetime ITV adaptation Ghostbusters hist Women's History Month cooking Netflix Christmas movies Paramount 007 indie discovery Academy Awards Chernobyl Bravo Shudder mockumentary YouTube Disney DC streaming service Disney streaming service canceled TV shows Vudu Super Bowl joker kids TNT Ovation USA Network FX on Hulu NBC Crackle GoT Film Festival PBS renewed TV shows animated sequel spy thriller Rock Pirates YouTube Red teaser ghosts theme song Podcast Peacock quibi Tubi Turner Classic Movies award winner Awards Tour 21st Century Fox Reality comic Dark Horse Comics Pet Sematary ESPN movie Certified Fresh Year in Review screen actors guild MCU sag awards Fall TV First Reviews E! witnail Trophy Talk travel Esquire latino Stephen King Holidays cars Mindy Kaling Superheroe natural history Lifetime Christmas movies crime Turner Film Comic Book disaster 45 toy story Brie Larson HBO Max Disney Channel Apple TV Plus comics spinoff crime drama Spring TV science fiction First Look Box Office social media technology Opinion Musicals cancelled Set visit psychological thriller Holiday Epix batman biography FOX Classic Film Arrowverse Family Song of Ice and Fire Drama Biopics breaking bad OneApp Columbia Pictures GLAAD zero dark thirty tv talk Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt cartoon romantic comedy blaxploitation medical drama comiccon Extras Heroines Pop Rocky Star Trek Disney Plus scary movies Hallmark The Walking Dead Comedy Central DC Universe Winter TV TIFF zombies Endgame Baby Yoda SundanceTV game of thrones Mary Tyler Moore YA SXSW binge Winners transformers anime ratings Cartoon Network Sundance free movies police drama FX Showtime NYCC Spectrum Originals Black Mirror Marvel IFC independent TBS anthology doctor who Election 20th Century Fox YouTube Premium GIFs Netflix Comedy Avengers documentary 2018 historical drama El Rey E3 Oscars based on movie The Witch Nominations spain Polls and Games Logo Superheroes game show cops Infographic reboot A24 Britbox series political drama DirecTV 2016 Christmas Sundance TV TCA 2017 Martial Arts richard e. Grant VH1 BBC Binge Guide Nickelodeon CW Seed Music facebook Mystery Horror Emmy Nominations Comics on TV golden globes Lucasfilm Musical Syfy what to watch LGBT Hulu APB Marvel Studios 2019 Rocketman elevated horror Character Guide 71st Emmy Awards Apple CBS stand-up comedy sports revenge Discovery Channel screenings Tomatazos war TV Land Tumblr Amazon Prime Video Animation Premiere Dates 2020 adventure diversity Schedule Video Games