The Mummy Tomb of the Dragon Emperor

That's not the way to Shangri-La!

Reviewed by: Alicia Glass
Published on: February 27, 2022 (URL is not
Available on: Hulu
Content release date: 2008-08-01

Review Rating: 7.5 out of 10

The first Emperor of Qin, cursed by a Sorceress into a mummy, rises from his grave and the O’Connells have to go to the Far East to save the day!

This is so sad. I waited and waited for the next Mummy movie, having loved the first two, and when I heard it was going to be an Asian-based Mummy, I was all excited! Prepare yourself for disappointment, kids.

It’s quite possible that a lot of the disappointment has to do with the fact that Rachel Weisz doesn’t return to reprise her role as Evie O’Connell. Bearing in mind, while this new Mummy movie was being taped, off in China, Weisz had just had a baby, and didn’t want to go immediately to China after that. Which, hey, I can understand. Mario Bello did her best to try and be Evie, but she just didn’t cut it.

As for the movie itself, well. It had a fair basis in reality, the Terracotta warriors buried with the first Emperor of the Qin dynasty, turned by movie magic into an army led by a crazed shape-shifting madman of a mummy, played by Jet Li. Okay, I can see it. He was cursed into Mummy-hood by the Sorceress he demanded immortality from, played by Michelle Yeoh. And of course, Alex O’Connell, following in his fathers infamous footsteps, is out in the desert attempting to make his own name by digging up the Emperor’s tomb and throwing everything into chaos. The elder O’Connell’s are severely lacking in adventure, both of them desiring security and action at the same time, which just doesn’t work. And always, brother Jonathon manages to get thrown into the mix, whether he likes it or not.

The background culturisms of this Mummy movie are more often than not glossed over, usually to get to the action. Unfortunately, most of the action is slapstick, even for Brendan Fraser, and that’s sad. Jet Li did his best, but seems bemused by a lot of it. And the CG Yeti in the Himalayas, who save the entire group when they try and blow up the Way to Shangri-La, is just terrible.

Younger folks may enjoy this new installment of the Mummy series. It’s a shame, they finally did a culture other than Egyptian, and it bombs!