Being the smarks we are, me and my little brother, House, went to see the Scorpion King on Sunday evening. I'm pretty sure the last movie I saw at the cinema was Austin Powers 2, so movie going generally isn't a big thing for me. Then again, me and House have also paid money to rent Ready to Rumble and Universal Soldier 2 and actually enjoyed them, so maybe it says more about my taste in movies.
Being a Sunday night in downtown Brisbane, the cinema wasn't exactly packed. Probably 30 - 40 people tops. Still we both made sure to sit up as tall as possible, to discourage any tools from sitting behind us. It's an excellent method, I highly recommend it. Especially if you are also, ummm, big boned, as we are. So we get through the usual buy this stuff ads, including one for jellied tongues, and it's on with the show.
Or is it? Opening scene and I'm having grave doubts. I don't remember Egypt being quite as mountainous and snowy as all that. My fears are quieted when a minute later in swings the Rock. From then on I'm happy. After the opening scene I say to House, "I'm glad we came here already." Granted, I'll never get invited to the Critic's awards, but damn I was having fun. Suffice it to say, there's lots of fights, the Rock gets the girl and everyone lives happily ever after. At least the good guys do. Well, until the sequel anyway.
Some things I did notice. At least one People's Eyebrow. Several Rocky promo type lines. In one of the fight scenes I almost had to say out loud, "Tell me you did not just ruin the Rock's shirt." Kelly Hu is not ugly. Executive Producer: Vince McMahon. In really big letters. WWFE in really big letters. At least they had their thinking caps on.
It would have been too easy for anyone involved (VKM) to try to get away with using the "talent" on tap from the WWF in the making of this fine film. Granted you could see Jericho as a guy at the start, Farooq as Michael Clarke Duncan's character and even, God forbid, some Divas as the feisty women folk. Thankfully though sanity prevailed and the Rock finally gets pushed as a star. Not before time too, he's been crying out for some attention.
The whole movie has a wrestling match feel to it. Here's our face, here's our heel. You figure out who's going to turn on whom. All looks lost for our face until he triumphs at the end. Oh, sorry, didn't mean to ruin it for anyone. A cynical person might say that there's better use of psychology in this particular 90 minutes than there has been in the last year of WWF programming. Not me though. No Sir. A similarly cynical person might also point out the varied move set used by one Rock in this movie. Not me though. No Sir.
What does it all boil down to in the end though? It's 90 odd minutes of time filling action. If you liked the Mummy, go see it. If you like the Rock, go see it. If you're a bloke who likes to see people smashing people with swords, go see it. In short, go see it. The only way it could have been better is if Ms Hu actually displayed her wares more. She's a fine actress and it was disappointing not to see more of her thespian range. Most disappointing.
Go see it, with a bunch of mates and scream in unison just after the opening credits "Finally the Rock has come back to Egypt". You know you want to.