The Mummy, Aged 19 (2002)

One of my earliest, scariest movie moments came when I saw the old Universal Studios Mummy in that crazy sequel, The Mummy's Tomb [1942] on late night television. I've always been a big supporter of director Wilson Yip. I even enjoyed the almost universally despised Skyline Cruisers [2000], his big budgeted take on the "high-tech spy" genre. With this teen comedy, director Yip manages to recapture some of the energy and verve that made him famous with his early masterpiece, Bio-Zombie [1998]. I had more fun with this DVD than I had in the cinema with the 1999 Universal remake and its 2001 sequel.

The strength of this film comes through the fine ensemble of seasoned character actors and new young performers put together by the director and producers Joe Ma Wai-Ho and Ivy Kong Yuk-Yee. Tommy, played by pop star Chiu Tien-You, suffers that uncomfortable teenage angst that many can identify with. He's out of it at work and feels displaced at home by his quirky family. Even his best friend Nam, played by pop star Wong You-Nam, challenges him for the affections of Tiffany Lee Lung-Yee, with whom their chance meeting sets off a comedy of errors as these kids have a misadventure with a couple of mummies. Thankfully, Tommy's mom and dad show up to save the day. Played by the always interesting Kingdom Yuen King-Tan and the rubber-faced Hui Siu-Hung, they save the movie from itself and raise it to another level.

Copyright © 2007 John Crawford. All rights reserved.