The Mummy is one of my all-time favorite movies. From the opening scene where the camera pans a sunset-filled Egyptian landscape to the daunting live action sequences dominated by thrilling stunts and unbelievable special effects, the film was a massive box office success in its day. To add to the praise, it has aged well over time, too.
The Mummy centers on the Egyptian high priest Imhotep (Arnold Vosloo) who rises from the dead in search of body parts in order to fulfill his desire of reuniting with Anck-Su-Namun (Patricia Velasquez), Pharaoh’s mistress, who took her life after soldiers had discovered of her dalliance with the high priest. Cursed forever, Imhotep was to remain undead in his sarcophagus. When he escaped, he became a walking disease among humans, a flesh-eater with unbound strength and power over the sands all the while possessing invincibility.
In the meantime, wisecracking adventurer, Richard O’Connell (Brendan Fraser) has his hands full. Not only does he have to contend with Imhotep’s uncanny ability to destroy everything in his path, but he also has to deal with a nasty desert environment, supposed friends ready to betray him, and weird bugs that could eat him whole. And right at the top of the list is Evelyn Carnahan (Rachel Weisz), the comely brunette who has a knack with getting in trouble.
Born in London, England, at a young age, Evelyn gained a deep appreciation of ancient Egyptian artifacts. Her father grew in fame as an explorer and married an Egyptian woman who became Evelyn’s mother. Evelyn loved books and because of that love, she applied to Bembridge scholars in England. However, they denied her application citing her lack of experience in spite of her expertise in Egyptology. She soon went to work for the Cairo Museum of Antiquities as a librarian, but this, too, became a disaster when she accidentally destroyed shelving meant to house rare and valuable books.
When Evelyn meets Richard for the first time, she has all she could do to remain calm from his foul mouth. After another insult from him, she stands her ground saying, in no uncertain terms, “I beg your pardon.” She will not take invectives from a barbaric prisoner of war ready for the gallows. Yet, she lets the personal affronts pass and keeps a distance from him, asking him about Hamunaptra, the City of the Dead where Imhotep had taken Anck-Su-Namun’s body the first time he attempted to raise her from the dead.
After several episodes where they experience a brush with death, Evelyn and Richard becomes a winsome pair on a journey to discover the secret to the mummy’s tomb. What Richard lacks, Evelyn compensates. As opposed to going into a fight with guns blazing, Evelyn prefers using craftiness to get to the core of a situation. That craftiness though, works as a double-edge sword getting Evelyn, more times than not, into added trouble.
Regardless of Evelyn’s penchant for stirring a hornet’s nest, she truly belongs in the Women Who Wow Wednesday series for her sheer tenacity and downright nerves. No mummy ought to be messing with this lady.
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What do you remember of the movie The Mummy? Have you ever been able to relate to Evelyn Carnahan?