Release Date: 05.01.01
Record label: uni / decca
Genre(s): Movies, Film Scores, Musicals, Etc.
Selfless, Cold, and Composed
by: matt halverson
Oh my God, The Mummy Returns sucked. Hackneyed story, gratuitous amounts of CGI dogmen and a brief, yet colossally hyped appearance by a pro wrestling star who's obviously been tossed from the ring one too many times - these things a good movie do not make. Of course, there was that "girls gone wild" cat fight between Rachel Weisz and Patricia Velasquez, but even pseudo-lesbianism wasn't enough to save this stinker.
"But it made $70 million opening weekend," you cry, "It can't be that bad." You're right, it did, and I'll even admit that 1/10,000,000th of that initial gross (oh yeah, pun intended) came from my hard-earned paycheck, but sometimes the savviest of critics gets fooled. Plus, come on, Rachel Weisz is hot - especially when she's doing cartwheels in gold lamé. But I digress..
So for no other reason than guilt by association, the original motion picture soundtrack to The Mummy Returns sucks just as much as that pitiful excuse for a movie it was written for. Remember that mix-tape your ex-girlfriend made for you with all those songs that meant something to just you and her? The one that had the song you first made out to, the song you danced to at senior prom, and that one that you first fu.…I mean made love to? And then remember when you found out the little skank had been screwing someone else behind your back and how she gave you the genital warts that she got from the guy she was nailing? Did you ever try listening to that mix-tape after she gnawed through your sternum and ate your heart with an iced cappuccino? Remember how listening to it made you want to pull off one of your own arms and beat yourself senseless with it for putting up with all of her shit? All the money you spent on little gifts and dinners, and all the times you assured her she didn't look fat in those jeans (even though you knew she did)? Forgive me for dredging up all of those memories, but that might give you some vague conception of what listening to The Mummy Returns is like.
Yes, it's really that bad. The overwhelming nausea I felt as I walked out of the that god-awful cartoon-with-live-action-actors lurched back into my gut as the opening strings of "The Legend of the Scorpion King" began to punish my stereo. "My First Bus Ride" dredges up repugnant recollections of the trapeze artist mummies who follow Brendan Fraser et al. on to a double-decker bus for one of the more ridiculous chase scenes in memory. And then of course there's the swoon of "The Mushy Part," which needs no elaboration.
Well, maybe I'm being a little harsh. The score is composed by Alan Silvestri - the guy who penned the music for Back to the Future. I don't care what anyone says, that was the best goddamn soundtrack of 1985. I couldn't tell you what else came out that year, but there's no way anything could have matched the rush I got as an eight-year-old when the horn section hit that crescendo as Marty McFly hit the gas in the Twin Pines mall parking lot in front of JCPenney and wondered aloud "Let's see if these bastards can do 90." Face it, that was the shit. But fittingly, The Mummy Returns is just, well, shit. Sadly, Back to the Future was the pinnacle for Silvestri, who has found a way to rip himself off in every soundtrack since then, yet directors inexplicably continue to throw work his way. (Robert Zemeckis has used him in damn near every movie he's ever made.) He hits all the standard movie soundtrack bases - rousing adrenaline pumpers, subtle heart-string tuggers and fear-inducing seat-clutchers - but the score suffers from the same condition that plagues the movie's title character - it lacks heart.
In "Forever May Not Be Long Enough" (I could make a crack here about how long I could go before watching this movie again, but I won't) the obligatory closing titles song, donated here by Live, lead singer Ed Kowalczyk asks "Would you follow me to the other side?" Hey Ed, I'll follow you anywhere, just so long as you make the music stop.