AN OPEN LETTER TO ROB COHEN, DIRECTOR
Dear Mr. Cohen,
Earlier this summer, we were all treated to Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, a cinematic event many of us were deeply excited about, only to be greatly disappointed; the film was a pale, ridiculous ghost of its former self, more hokey parody than joyous reunion. After 15 years, it would have been better if we'd simply left Indy riding off into that glorious sunset. And so I'm forced to ask: Why, when that film was such a colossal disappointment, would I ever want to watch your third-rate, wannabe, copycat rip-off!? Mr. Cohen, I'll say this for The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor—it makes Indy's latest adventure look like a masterpiece by comparison.
In your film, Brendan Fraser reprises his role as Rick O'Connell, the globe-trotting explorer who, seven years after last Mummy installment, now finds himself living in an opulent Oxfordshire mansion, whittling away his hours fly-fishing—or at least attempting to. His wife, Evelyn (played by American actress Maria Bello, who does a commendable job with the English accent but seems to be channeling Kate Beckinsale more than Rachel Weisz), has made a fortune writing not-so-fictional novels about perilous run-ins with nasty, undead fiends. Young Alex, who was only a child in the last film (now played by Luke Ford, who looks no more than 10 years Fraser's junior), is all grown up and, unbeknownst to his parents, has quit university to go dig for a mythical tomb in the desolate Chinese outback. Like father, like son, eh? So clever, Mr. Cohen.
The tomb belongs to Emperor Han (Jet Li), a tyrannical leader who ruled all of China with a barbarous fist until a beautiful sorceress (Michelle Yeoh) put a curse ...