To be perfectly honest, I went in expecting the absolute worst from The Mummy Rebirth, which should not be confused with the relatively recent Mummy Reborn. The reason for my trepidation is due to the fact that Justin Price’s previous films have been awful. Starting in 2015, his titles have been miserable slogs with lousy effects, poor pacing, and terrible characterizations (his movies before that year I have yet to see). The Dawnseeker, The Elf, and Alien: Reign Of Man, I have seen them all and was not remotely entertained.
The Mummy Rebirth starts off just as agonizing as I feared. Sebek (Shamel Hashish) treks through a poorly rendered CGI desert while wearing a terrible Halloween costume that resembles one of the Egyptian gods. He descends stone stairs to meet Reheema (Taylor Carter), his forbidden lover. As they are preparing to escape through a secret tunnel, the Pharaoh’s guards come in and kill them.
Then the opening title sequence begins, complete with a voice-over narration explaining several vital elements that were not very clear in that prologue. The CGI used here is still unpolished, but given the stylized imagery on display, it is far easier to forgive. Plus, there is repetitive information between the prologue and the opening titles. Considering that the latter gives more information, more engagingly, and is more pleasing visually speaking, why the prologue exists at all is confounding.
“For reasons not yet known to the intrepid adventurers, their employer…desires to help the now resurrected mummy.”
The plot officially gets underway in modern times, when archaeologists Noah (Carter) and Daniella (Brittany Goodwin) discover a map to a lost ancient city. This long-forgotten place houses the mummified Sebek (Michal Aaron Wiede), who is hell-bent on destroying the world. For reasons not yet known to the intrepid adventurers, their employer Sager (David E. Cazares) desires to help the now resurrected mummy. Will the reincarnated lovers finally be reunited for all time? Can the Indiana Jones and Lara Croft comparisons to the main characters be avoided?
To answer the last question first, no, those comparisons loom large, mainly due to their costume designs; which are not too shabby, in all honesty. The mummy himself, who is an actor in a costume looks quite good. The physical quality of seeing the mummy taking down a victim or two adds to the sense of danger nicely. Plus, while yes, Daniella and Noah look like two of the most iconic action-adventure heroes of all-time, and is that really a problem? Co-writers/ co-directors Khu and Justin Price wear their inspiration as a badge of honor.