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The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor (Widescreen) by Rob Cohen, Director
Review by Charles Mohapel
Universal Studios DVD  ISBN/ITEM#: B001HQZJMU
Date: 29 December 2008 List Price $29.98 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Official Info /

First of all, I admit that I own The Mummy, The Mummy Returns, and The Scorpion King, all of which I categorize as great summer fare, especially when accompanied by popcorn and a beverage. Sure the plots all require you to suspend your sense of disbelief, but once you have done so, sit back and enjoy the action.

My one big regret is that Rachel Weiss declined to reprise her role as Evy O'Connell. Maria Bello is good in the action sequences but where she fails is in her inability to show a really soft feminine side like Ms. Weiss. Rachel Weiss is the equivalent of a steel magnolia from the Old South - a lady but with a core of steel. Maria Bello just wasn't able to fill the role to my satisfaction.

Contents of Disc:

    Promo for The Scorpion King on DVD and The Scorpion King 2: Rise Of A Warrior on DVD and Blu-ray

    Promo for Coraline (written by Neil Gaiman and directed by Henry Selick (The Nightmare Before Christmas)) – the first ever Stop Motion movie in 3D (February 2009)

    Promo for My Own Worst Enemy starring Christian Slater, Mondays on NBC

    Promo for Universal movies on Blu-ray

    The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor

    Bonus Features

      Deleted and Extended Scenes (10:45)
      - "Secret Lovers" TRT 1:13
      - "Deleted: Conversation In Shanghai" TRT 0:55
      - "Night in Himalaya" (Deleted: Rick/Evy) TRT 2:02
      - "Tea Time: Yang & Choi" TRT 0:33
      - "Motorcycle Grenade Toss" TRT 0:17
      - "Female fight in Cog Room" TRT 0:41
      - "Emperor Reassembles" TRT 1:14
      - "Jonathan & Maguire at Club" TRT 2:32

    Feature Commentary with Director Rob Cohen
    On/Off

    The trailer for The Scorpion King 2: Rise Of A Warrior interested me enough that I plan on adding it to my collection.

I've had the pleasure and good fortune to attend a small press conference where Neil Gaiman spoke passionately of how his book "Coraline" was being made into a movie. Now that it's coming out, I'd strongly recommend the movie to fans of Neil Gaiman and The Nightmare Before Christmas.

While director Rob Cohen took some creative liberties with Chinese history, in particular the Great Wall of China, these changes only serve to make the story run smoothly. Or perhaps I should say it moves along like an avalanche, slow at the start but building up speed like an accelerating express train.

When it comes to the deleted scenes and characters deleted from scenes, I have no argument with their removal. As for the extended scenes, I wish they had been included in the theatrical release. With a running time of 112 minutes, these extended scenes would have added less than 5 minutes to the film. "Secret Lovers" would have definitely added depth to the characters of the general and the good sorceress. "Tea Time: Yang & Choi" would have done the same for the modern day general and his subordinate. "Night in Himalaya" is simply hilarious. I really wish that "Emperor Reassembles" had been in the theatrical version because it would have shown just how powerful the Dragon Emperor was.

My opinion of the Feature Commentary with Director Rob Cohen is that for a man who directed such an adrenaline rush of a film, he comes across on the Feature Commentary as a monotonous speaker. As interesting as the inside information he was sharing with the viewer, I just found this feature dragged on and on and on.

All in all, The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor is a fun movie and while the bonus features are good, I imagine that the 2-Disc Deluxe Edition is a better value for the money.

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