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Why The (2017) “The Mummy” Is A Shell of An Adventure

#BLOG 3

INTRO

The review produced by Screenrant tries hard to give “The Mummy” movie a bone but ends up killing it even faster. The honest truth of the matter, “The Mummy” tries to be something it’s not and doesn’t even do that well. Giving the audience five reasons why the movie was bad and why it was good.

  1. A Disappointingly Small Scale:

Oddly enough for a movie called The Mummy, the story spends very little time in Egypt, or anywhere comparable, and, instead, sets the majority of its action sequences somewhere around Surrey, England. Which doesn’t really spell rip-roaring adventure to most people.

Even when the movie reaches the streets of London for its third act, the sets and locations feel quite limited, and the color palette is remarkably grey and monotonous.

Response: The movie shouldn’t have been set in England in the first place. At least with the last Mummy movie with Branden Frasier, it was based in China with a Chinese mummy. It makes total sense and at no point are you confused. Was the Dragon Emperor a good film like its predecessors? Sort of, but not quite.However, The Dragon Emperor has many redeeming qualities that make it a worthwhile watch.

  1. Isn’t: Tom Cruise Has Still Got It

There are few movie actors left in the business who have the star power of Tom Cruise and, at age 54, he still brought some much-needed charm to The Mummy.

Not only could Cruise sell moments of tension and action, but his all-around enthusiasm for the process energizes the wearier aspects of the movie in a way that few actors possibly could have.

Response: I’ll be honest, I don’t really know much about Tom Cruise, and that’s OK. Although I did like him in “Interview with a Vampire”. He was very mysterious in his villainy. Although in this movie, he’s just not the guy for the role or anybody for that matter.

  1. Generic Screenwriting

Despite some very talented screenwriters working on the project, The Mummy fails to stand out from the blockbuster crowd and this is mostly its own fault.

The popular MacGuffin of a magic rock is introduced almost immediately in the movie and a predictable course of events feels secondary to the movie’s desire to flesh out a fictional universe that audiences will never actually get to see.

Response: The plot was flat; you don’t need to beat around the bush. This director completely misses the essence and fun of the other films. Branden Frasier, along with the rest of its cast, added too much flavor to the franchise just for it to taste bland.

  1. Stunts

Tom Cruise’s dedication to stuntwork on his own movies is well documented and The Mummy is no different. Having the lead actor actually get inside as many of the action shots as they can brings a lot to a movie and it helps this one feel like more of a romp.

Though a lack of originality holds it back, The Mummy is a movie that’s always trying to be entertaining in an almost slapstick kind of way and the physicality of the action adds a lot of personality to the comedy.

Response: “The Mummy” Franchise is not Mission Impossible, a James Bond movie, a spy movie, Jason Born, or Taken. It’s literally a fantasy adventure, and that’s all it ever was.

  1. Tasteless Updates to the Story

For a movie presenting so many distinct time periods and cultural icons, you’d think The Mummy would present at least one of them in a satisfying way.

Aside from sidelining Egypt, and needlessly adding medieval English history to the mix, the movie makes the particularly tasteless choice to set its opening action sequence in modern-day Iraq with a force that is, while stereotypically faceless and nameless, essentially ISIS.

Response: Making more vibrant environments would have helped the film.

  1. A Combined Monster Universe Isn’t a Bad Idea

While The Mummy often fails to frame it in an appealing way, the central idea of the movie isn’t a bad one. Universal alone had been doing monster team-ups and crossovers for just shy of three-quarters of a century before the movie came out.

The movie’s idea to unify everything through what would almost certainly be its Nick Fury figure, Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde and a S.H.I.E.L.D.-like organization with its own potential to spin-off and become evil, there are some entertaining promises made. Even if they’re only just that.

Response: Creating a creature feature universe from other monster franchises wasn’t a terrible concept. What was a terrible concept was using “The Mummy” as its basis to debut. The titles below are all the movies that would have been in theaters if Warner Bros. hadn’t ditched the project. I think Dr. Jeckyll and Mr. Hyde could have been a smash hit!

  • The Dark Universe Begins – and Ends. Universal Pictures. …
  • Van Helsing. Universal Pictures. …
  • Johnny Depp’s Invisible Man. Universal Pictures. …
  • Phantom of the Opera and Hunchback. Universal Pictures. …
  • Dwayne Johnson’s The Wolfman. …
  • Creature from the Black Lagoon. …
  • The Bride of Frankenstein.
  1. It Borrows Very Heavily from Much Better Things

Arguing over how original the story really is is something that you could do with every version of The Mummy, from the original in 1932 to everything that it’s inspired since. But the 2017 version chooses much more poorly with extra cultural references and they often end up contradicting the tone of the movie.

The Mummy wants to be a horror movie in an atmospheric kind of way rather than by showing anything overtly horrific or grotesque but it also wants to be an Indiana Jones movie, which, of course, balanced its joyful qualities with more graphic imagery. It’s overwhelming visual similarities to the Uncharted series of video games (which were, themselves, already heavily inspired by The Mummy movies) also feels like an aesthetically-confused choice.

Response: Sure….I suppose

  1. It Brings Horror To a Non-Horror Audience

Not everyone watches movies in the same way and people don’t always have the same access to movies. The Mummy goes for as wide an audience as it can because it wants to reach the most amount of people and make the most amount of money, yes, but it actually succeeds in bringing classical horror aspects to audiences who ordinarily wouldn’t get to see them.

Aside from Cruise’s name bringing his own kind of audience, The Mummy was a financial hit in China, a country famous for its stringent censorship laws surrounding, amongst several other things, the horror genre and the supernatural.

Response: If you want horror elements but not a horror movie, go watch Pan’s Labrinth.

  1. It Puts the Cart Before the Horse

So much of what makes people remember the 2017 version of The Mummy as a bad movie is that it set itself such an unnecessarily high bar for success.

Audiences were definitely holding it up to, at least, the first two Stephen Sommers Mummy movies but the gigantic budget and shared universe were both its own choice yet both feel wasted. They transform it into something that audiences actively root against rather than for.

Response: Were they trying to give this movie a chance? The response says it all regarding the film successs.

  1. A Pervading Sense of Humor

Stories of production troubles on The Mummy are easy to believe but, no matter how things really went down, what the cast and crew were able to pull out of the movie is a light tone and some comedic chemistry from its actors.

Cruise is a big star with a knack for making sure his movies are driven by him but not all about him. He creates entertaining dynamics with a wide variety of talented actors that he’s paired with and allows what’s best about them to really shine in the movie, even if it isn’t for every long.

Response: Tom Cruise added nothing to this movie, nor did the humor.

Conclusion

After tentatively rewatching the (2017) “The Mummy” I realized the movie is empty. The characters have no volume, the anti-protagonist is wildly underutilized, comedic conversations are out of place, and the tone of the movie is too dark (the color of the film). The movie is not fun, and it comes off more as a chore for the audience to get through. Ultimately, I was surprised at a few points throughout the movie and bored at the same time.

No, the Warriors 2016 Finals Loss Was Not the Biggest Choke of the Decade

This article, https://bluemanhoop.com/2019/12/24/golden-state-warriors-3-1-blunder-was-worst-choke-of-the-decade/, discusses why the Golden State Warriors’ 2016 NBA Finals loss was the worst choke of the decade. The article mainly states that in 2016 the Warriors had it all. They were clicking on all cylinders and were destined to repeat as champions. This is all true, but then the article makes it seem like Stephen Curry simply didn’t play up to his unanimous MVP level in the Finals and therefore the Warriors choked away their 3-1 lead. This article has some clear biases in it, as it paints out the Cavs leading a historic comeback solely due to their play and the Warriors not playing up to par.

The article fails to paint the whole picture. Stephen Curry went down with a brutal MCL sprain in the first round of the 2016 playoffs, leaving the Warriors without their superstar player for over two weeks. He was able to make a return, but clearly didn’t look like himself. One of the biggest strengths to Curry’s game is his off ball movement and his shotmaking off the dribble. Both of these were drastically limited due to him playing at much less than full strength. While this was very obvious in the Western Conference Finals vs the OKC Thunder, the Warriors still managed to overcome a 3-1 deficit and advance to the NBA Finals. A combination of fatigue and excellent defense from the Cavaliers led to Stephen Curry being much less effective after taking a 3-1 lead over Cleveland. Facing constant double teams and rough house defense led to the Warriors having to lean on other players to step up in the last 3 games, which clearly didn’t end up working out. Harrison Barnes was often left wide open for the Warriors and shot an inexcusably poor 5/32 FG over the final three games of the finals. They also lost their starting center Andrew Bogut to injury for the last two games and their star forward Draymond Green to suspension in Game 5.

All these factors led to the Warriors losing the Finals after going up 3-1. While this was definitely a choke job, I don’t consider it to be the biggest of the decade due to all the circumstances surrounding it.

Critiquing the Critique of Deep Adaptation

In 2018, I came across an academic paper entitled “Deep Adaptation: A Map for Navigating Climate Tragedy.” Early in my career I worked as the managing editor of two academic research journals so I understand the process of academic review and what an academic paper looks like (ho hum). This was like no paper I had ever seen before.

“Should you be spending time reading the rest of this article? Should I even finish writing it?”

Continue reading Critiquing the Critique of Deep Adaptation

Gen Z You Can’t Cancel Eminem

Cancel culture is the “thing” right now I’m actually ok with that because to me it’s a form of natural consequences that are necessary in our changing and ever more inclusive society. I also think that language or even imagery that maybe inappropriate in most settings isn’t inappropriate in others like within the arts. Eminem isn’t only a rap artist he is a lyricist. He employs incredible skill in the way in which he utilizes language within his works.

“I won’t stop even when my hair turns grey (I’m tone-deaf) / ‘Cause they won’t stop until they cancel me” – Eminem “Tone Deaf”

“Tone Deaf” by Eminem

The utilization of irony within this new song Em just released is frankly so extremely obvious as Eminem is clearly not tone deaf. He has become an expert at utilizing the public discourse and highlighting what’s most controversial at the time. This is how Eminem has built his brand. Haters have always driven Em to greater creativity and expended his fan base.

So if you must continue your effort to cancel Em but it will result as wasted energy and an expanded net worth to Marshal Mathers empire.

Racial Biased in Crime Reporting

were they robbing the house with ties

Lately, I have become obsessed how so-called traditional media report crimes differently based on race and identity in this country. This obsession led me rabbit hole to figure out reasons behind this biased reporting. For example, MPR news posted an article on their website titling “Man allegedly flashed gun at Somali-American teens in Eden Prairie McDonald’s” and when I read this article it upset me so much that I abruptly ended my donation to the station. It bothered me not that grown man decided to pulled gun on teens but how MPR news chose to report the news. The title of the article as well as reporting identifies the identity of victims but not the perpetrator of this horrible crime which tells me that the perpetrator is one of us, but these kids are not part of our community. I was confused that what made that man Eden Prairie man but not these kids. If Man was not white or these teens happen to be white, what would the article titled? Would it be “Man allegedly flashed gun at Somali-American teens in Eden Prairie McDonald’s”. This is not one incident that slipped away in their reporting, it is standard way of reporting crime classification at MPR news. If you routinely listen MPR news, you will be forced to become aware the identity of perpetrator or victim if they happen to be part of the minority community. Its calculated decision to label minority communities so dangerous in this country. Studies show that most American’s believe that black and brown people are dangerous, and we quickly dismiss the outcry of minority victims and police are quick to shoot them to contain their so-called violence behavior. You wonder where this cognitive belief that black and brown folk are so dangerous come from? Wonder no more, it come from decades of media wrongly reporting how dangerous we are without shred of evidence.

One study by Color of Change found that 51 percent of people arrested for violent crimes in New York city are black, but 75 percent of news reports are arrests highlighted black perpetrator. In the incident at McDonalds in Eden Prairie in Minnesota, the narrative behind that story is that what made an elderly man to pull his guns at black obnoxious kids, was he afraid of his life? I think the media is driving this false narrate of black people are dangerous whether they are victims or perpetrator to divide the communities in this country.

You have got to listen this amazing audio about how Racial Bias in Crime Reporting by WNYC by following this link.

https://www.wnycstudios.org/story/crime-reporting-racial-bias

They say GMOs are safe to eat?

The definition of a GMO is a genetically modified organism. It is a plant, animal, microorganism or other organism whose genetic makeup has been modified in a laboratory using genetic engineering or transgenic technology. This creates combinations of plant, animal, bacterial and virus genes that do not occur in nature or through traditional crossbreeding methods.

What do the “experts” say?

According to The National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine, (NAS) research concluded that genetically modified crops are “safe to eat, have the same nutrition and composition as non-genetically modified crops and have no links to new allergies, cancer, celiac or other diseases.”

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Are GMOs safe to eat?

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I’m not convinced

As a certified nutritionist, I’m a bit skeptical when it comes to this whole NON GMO debate.

According to the NON GMO Project, there are no specific tests designed to analyze the long term safety of genetically modified foods and no post-marketing follow-up analysis. In addition, since the safety assessment of GMOs at the FDA are based on “substantial equivalence,” it is regarded as safe to consume. In other words, “if a new food is found to be substantially equivalent in composition and nutritional characteristics to an existing food, it can be regarded as safe as the conventional food.”

Let’s break this down… First of all, they’re saying that genetically modified food is safe to eat solely because it resembles existing food? What do they mean by “substantial equivalence” and how do they prove that it’s actually safe? Second of all, this conclusion is made by the biotech company, not the FDA. We can choose to be naive and say that this doesn’t revolve around money, but let’s be real; everything within our society revolves around money. Why do you think there are so many GMOs? Well, because they are able to produce more of a product for a much cheaper cost. Now tell me again how this doesn’t revolve around money?

Whether or not you believe GMOs are safe to consume, I encourage you to at least question it for yourself. Our personal health should be the top priority, not the cost.

Legalizing Cannabis

In recent years, the idea of legalizing marijuana has motivated the senate to vote on bills. Everyone has an opinion on it—you’re either for legalization or you’re against it. John T. Broderick Jr. wrote an article on why he thinks it is not a time to legalize marijuana. I respectfully disagree.

https://www.concordmonitor.com/What-is-the-rush-on-marijuana-25530476

Opposite sides

Broderick Jr. states that he helps lead a statewide conversation about adolescent mental health and he’s concerned with the idea of teaching people that mental health is common yet treatable, but then there’s the commercializing of marijuana in the background.  Something he says is known to increase the likelihood of psychotic incidents and it has detrimental effects on the developing brain. I don’t think for a second that the use of marijuana alone would cause someone to have a psychotic episode. If they were to, there’s obviously something else that contributes to the underlying issue. As for “detrimental” effects on the developing brain, there’s been no definitive research that says “yes, marijuana affects adolescents developing brain”—there’s only been ideas linked. Even then, the effects of marijuana including memory problems, slow coordination and reaction time and possible hallucinations are only short term. I feel as if “long-term” effects are issues in a person’s environment—not from the drug itself.

For legalization

I’ve traveled to Colorado the last two years for a road trip, and many people there admitted that they were taught about the effects of drugs on the body, like marijuana for example, and still chose to smoke. It’s not as if the conversations about marijuana to the youth are going unnoticed. Broderick Jr. said himself he thinks that “decriminalizing possession of small amounts of marijuana so that young people won’t have a criminal record and legalizing marijuana for medical use to relieve suffering make sense.” Many people use marijuana for its medicinal properties. If we put that into context, there should be no reason why recreational marijuana can’t be legalized. Marijuana has known medical uses—cigarettes, for example, have no positive qualities and yet the youth are still peer pressured into smoking.

I CBDon’t get it.

Marijuana use is fairly common these days, and I don’t judge anybody who uses it for health or personal reasons, but something that has been on the rise as of late that I truly don’t understand is the CBD oil craze. CBD stands for Cannabidoil Oil, which is another part of the marijuana plant that doesn’t make you high, but is advertised as a miracle treatment for a myriad of things.

http://www.startribune.com/at-cbd-store-opening-in-minneapolis-mayor-frey-reaffirms-support-for-legalizing-cannabis/507797602/

I’ve recently noticed a couple places in Minnesota promoting CBD as a viable business option, and others who like myself are confused. The Star Tribune write about how Mayor Frey attended the opening of the first hemp and CBD dispensary, and explaining that Marijuana is a viable business for the state of Minnesota. The only thing I don’t understand about CBD is that its not FDA regulated, so anyone can claim its some sort of miracle product.

The Star Tribune article sounds very uplifting to the idea of this product, only mentioning its lack of regulation once, and I think that if anyone should do a deep dive with a little skepticism, it should be the Star Tribune.

http://www.citypages.com/restaurants/new-dinkytown-coffee-shop-will-sell-energy-drinks-mixed-with-cbd-oil/498435031

The funny thing is I saw an article in the City Pages on a new CBD infused energy drink in Dinkytown, and even though they are a local free publication that mainly publishes news on twin cities style, events, and features… They actually approached the topic of CBD with a little bit of skepticism and sarcasm. I don’t usually have an opinion on something like an oil, but when its being used as a miracle cure for anything from severe pain to stress relief, I think we should be asking more questions, and put more research behind how its being used.

If anyone is supposed to be skeptical, you think it would be our main newspaper, but ironically someone at the dramatic and hilarious City Pages has more questions on this topic.

Unrealistic Relationships

Ever since I was a young girl, having a girly girl magazine telling me what to wear, how to do my make-up, or what currently is in was the most popular thing ever. Of course, I enjoyed these things growing up because I wasn’t born and raised in the world of internet but besides articles telling women what beautiful is when really they only represent 2 percent of what women really look like, what bothers me the most is articles about relationships. They are always so cheesy and unrealistic. I always think to myself if the writer of the article is living in some television fantasy and thinks that they are a relationship counselor because of it.

Here is a blog from Cosmopolitan and the 10 ways men can impress women (According to “woman”). It is pretty sad that these 10 things are the most creative things that this author got from the women that she got this information from. Number 8 on the lists says that a woman was impressed by a man who can “lift weights”. Are you kidding me right now? I know that person isn’t speaking for all woman but is this realistic? Sounds like someone shallow who has nothing good to find in a guy but how fit he is by how much weight he can lift. Two of the things on the list has something involved with coffee in them. What if the person you date doesn’t like coffee? Does that make them less wanted and desirable?

I want to point out also that most relationship articles in general are majorly between men and woman. What if the reader was lesbian or gay? These type of articles do not represent a relationship well at all and always live in that crazy television or movie fantasy life. The fact of the matter is ladies (and gents), if you aren’t okay with being subjugated to look or do something in particular, don’t take these articles seriously. This is the reason why in society today that we have unrealistic expectations of relationships and how it should be.

Thank you,
Sophia