The Mummy Returns

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The Mummy Returns
The Mummy Returns poster.jpg
Promotional poster
Directed by Stephen Sommers
Produced by Sean Daniel
James Jacks
Written by Stephen Sommers
Starring Brendan Fraser
Rachel Weisz
John Hannah
Arnold Vosloo
Oded Fehr
Patricia Velásquez
The Rock
Music by Alan Silvestri
Cinematography Adrian Biddle
Edited by Bob Ducsay
Kelly Matsumoto
Alphaville Films
Distributed by Universal Pictures
Release dates
  • May 4, 2001 (2001-05-04)
Running time
130 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $98 million
Box office $433,013,274[1]

The Mummy Returns is a 2001 American fantasy adventure film written and directed by Stephen Sommers, starring Brendan Fraser, Rachel Weisz, John Hannah, Arnold Vosloo, Oded Fehr, Patricia Velásquez, and Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson. The film is a sequel to the 1999 film The Mummy.

The Mummy Returns inspired the 2002 film The Scorpion King which is set 5,000 years prior and whose eponymous character, played by Dwayne Johnson (The Rock), was introduced in this film. It was followed by the 2008 sequel The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor.


In prehistoric Egypt, the Scorpion King leads his army on a campaign to conquer the world. In 3067 BC, seven years after his campaign began, the Scorpion King and his army are defeated during his siege on Thebes and exiled to the desert of Ahm Shere. His men die of heat exhaustion, leaving only the Scorpion King. Vowing to give Anubis his soul for the power to defeat his enemies, an oasis is created to hide the Scorpion King's pyramid and give him a legion of humanoid jackal warriors in Anubis' image to seek revenge. The Army of Anubis sweeps across Egypt, destroying everything in its path, but once their task is finished Anubis claims the Scorpion King's soul and his army.

In 1933, Rick and Evelyn O'Connell explore a ruined mortuary structure in the ancient Egyptian city of Thebes with their son, Alex. They find the Bracelet of Anubis. In London, Alex puts on the bracelet, which shows him a vision with directions to the Oasis of Ahm Shere. Alex has seven days to reach the oasis, or the bracelet will kill him the moment the sun's rays shine on the Scorpion King's pyramid; at that point, the Scorpion King and his army will awaken.

Evelyn is captured by an Egyptian cult who have resurrected Imhotep; they wish to use Imhotep's power to defeat the Scorpion King, which would give him command of Anubis' army to take over Earth. The cult, led by Baltus Hafez, the British Museum's curator, includes a warrior named Lock-Nah and Meela Nais, the reincarnation of Imhotep's love Anck-su-namun. The O'Connells set out to rescue her, accompanied by Evelyn's brother Jonathan and the Medjai Ardeth Bay.

After having discovered the bracelet is missing, Hafez attempts to sacrifice Evelyn, however a fight ensues between Rick and Imhotep. Imhotep then calls on the help of his mummified soldiers to kill them. After freeing Evelyn they flee on a double-Decker bus. After defeating them, Alex is kidnapped and the O'Connells travel across Egypt to rescue him along with Rick's associate from his past adventures, Izzy, a pilot, who provides the group with transportation.

The bracelet gives Alex visions, directions to Ahm Shere that Imhotep follows. At each location, Alex leaves clues for his parents, who follow in Izzy's dirigible. Imhotep uses the Book of the Dead to give Meela Nais the soul of Anck-su-namun but by doing so he allows Evelyn to unlock the memories of her previous life as Princess Nefertiri, the bracelet's keeper and Pharaoh Seti I's daughter. Lock-Nah discovers that Alex has been leaving clues, so Imhotep makes a wall of water that attacks the dirigible. The O'Connells crash in the jungle of Ahm Shere. Izzy stays with the dirigible in hopes of repairing it. The O'Connells attack the cult, and both groups are attacked by pygmy mummies. Rick retrieves Alex while Ardeth Bay kills Lock-Nah. They escape from the pygmies, who kill most of the cult except for Baltus. Imhotep and Anck-su-namun are unharmed due to Imhotep's powers and Anck-su-namun being the keeper of the Book of the Dead.

Rick and Alex run to the pyramid, barely making it before sunrise. The bracelet detaches from Alex's arm. Ardeth regroups with the Medjai in case Anubis' army rises. Anck-su-namun stabs Evelyn and kills her. Rick, grieving, pursues Imhotep. Baltus puts on the bracelet and revives the army. As Imhotep walks into the pyramid, Anubis takes his powers, wanting Imhotep to fight as a mortal. Rick finds Imhotep summoning the Scorpion King and they fight. The Medjai engage the army as the Scorpion King interrupts Rick and Imhotep's fight. Imhotep tells the Scorpion King that he is the Scorpion King's slave, but Rick was sent to kill him. During Rick and the Scorpion King's fight, Baltus is killed. Jonathan and Alex collaborate to steal the Book of the Dead from Anck-su-namun. Alex uses the book to resurrect Evelyn, who duels with Anck-su-namun while Alex and Jonathan go to help Rick.

It is revealed that the scepter that Jonathan has been carrying extends into a spear that can kill the Scorpion King. The Medjai seemingly defeat Anubis' army despite heavy casualties, but see that they have only defeated the vanguard, and the full army is charging towards them. However, before the Anubis warriors hit the Medjai lines, Rick succeeds in killing the Scorpion King, sending him and his army back to the Underworld. The Scorpion King's death breaks his oath with Anubis, causing the oasis to turn back into a desert, and the oasis to be sucked into the pyramid. Rick and Imhotep hang from the edge of a pit that leads into the underworld. Evelyn risks her life to save Rick, but Anck-su-namun refuses to do the same for Imhotep, and abandons him. Heartbroken about her desertion, he lets go of the ledge, falling into the underworld, to his death. Anck-su-namun, running away from the pyramid, falls into a pit of scorpions.

The O'Connells reach the top of the pyramid, which is being sucked into the desert. Izzy arrives with a modified dirigible and saves the O'Connells. Jonathan grabs the diamond at the top of the pyramid. Ardeth Bay salutes them as they fly over him.


Actor Role
Brendan Fraser Rick O'Connell
Rachel Weisz Evelyn Carnahan O'Connell/Princess Nefertiri
Arnold Vosloo Imhotep
John Hannah Jonathan Carnahan
Oded Fehr Ardeth Bay
Patricia Velásquez Meela Nais/Anck-Su-Namun
Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson The Scorpion King (Mathayus of Akkad)
Freddie Boath Alex O'Connell
Alun Armstrong Baltus Hafez
Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje Lock-Nah
Shaun Parkes Izzy Buttons
Bruce Byron Red
Joe Dixon Jacques
Tom Fisher Spivey
Aharon Ipalé Pharaoh Seti I


Box office[edit]

The Mummy Returns has earned the gross profit (the worldwide box office minus the budget) of $335,013,000, which, taking inflation into account, is a few percent lower than The Mummy '​s gross profit ($335,933,000). On its opening day, the film earned $24,134,667. The film grossed $202,019,785 in the United States and Canada box offices and $230,993,489 elsewhere, totaling in $433,013,274 worldwide.[2]


The Mummy Returns has received mixed reviews from critics. It currently holds a 47% "Rotten" rating on Rotten Tomatoes, based on 139 reviews.[3] Metacritic reported, based on 31 reviews, an average rating of 48 out of 100.[4]

Roger Ebert, who awarded the first film three stars, gave the second film only two, saying that "The mistake of The Mummy Returns is to abandon the characters, and to use the plot only as a clothesline for special effects and action sequences."[5] James Berardinelli of ReelViews gave the film two and a half stars (out of four), calling it "hollow, lightweight entertainment—not unpleasant, but far from the summer's definitive action/adventure flick.[6]

Kenneth Turan of the Los Angeles Times gave the film a positive review, praising its "constant plot turns, cheeky sensibility and omnipresent action sequences."[7] Todd McCarthy of Variety praised "the nonstop action of the final hour", saying that it "bursts with visual goodies."[8]

Joe Morgenstern of the Wall Street Journal gave the film a negative review, saying that it "has all of the clank but none of the swank of the previous version."[4] Charles Taylor of was also not impressed, calling The Mummy Returns "everything the first Mummy was fun for not being."[9]

Awards and nominations[edit]

Award Subject Nominee Result
Saturn Awards Best Fantasy Film Nominated
Best Makeup Aileen Seaton, Nick Dudman and Jane Walker Nominated
Best Special Effects John Andrew Berton, Jr., Daniel Jeannette, Neil Corbould and Thomas Rosseter Nominated
Best Young Actor Freddie Boath Nominated
Young Artist Awards Nominated
Kids' Choice Awards Favorite Male Movie Star Brendan Fraser Nominated
Teen Choice Awards Choice Actor Nominated
Choice Sleazebag Dwayne Johnson Won
Choice Drama/Action-Adventure Nominated
Golden Trailer Awards Best Title Sequence Nominated
Golden Reel Awards Best Sound Editing - Effects & Foley Leslie Shatz, Malcolm Fife, Ann Scibelli, Jon Olive and Jonathan Klein[disambiguation needed] Nominated
Empire Awards Best British Actress Rachel Weisz Nominated


The Mummy Returns: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
Soundtrack album by Alan Silvestri
Released May 1, 2001
Genre Soundtrack
Length 01:13:26
Label Decca Records
The Mummy soundtrack chronology
The Mummy The Mummy Returns Tomb of the Dragon Emperor
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 3/5 stars
Empire 3/5 stars
Filmtracks 4/5 stars
Tracksounds 8/10 stars

The Mummy Returns: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack was released on May 1, 2001 by Decca Records.

It contains the score composed and conducted by Alan Silvestri, although it misses material heard during the climactic action sequences[citation needed]. Also featured is a version of the song "Forever May Not Be Long Enough" by the rock band Live, which slightly differs from the song's album version[citation needed].

No. Title Length
1. "The Legend of the Scorpion King"   4:55
2. "Scorpion Shoes"   4:24
3. "Imhotep Unearthed"   4:22
4. "Just an Oasis"   1:25
5. "Bracelet Awakens"   1:28
6. "Evy Kidnapped"   5:55
7. "Rick's Tattoo"   1:59
8. "Imhotep Reborn"   2:42
9. "My First Bus Ride"   7:45
10. "The Mushy Part"   2:42
11. "A Gift and a Curse"   5:32
12. "Medjai Commanders"   2:03
13. "Evy Remembers"   4:03
14. "Sandcastles"   3:22
15. "We're In Trouble"   2:18
16. "Pygmy Attach"   3:31
17. "Come Back Evy"   3:29
18. "The Mummy Returns"   7:44
19. "Forever May Not Be Long Enough" (Performed by Live) 3:47


  1. ^
  2. ^ "The Mummy Returns (2001)". 
  3. ^ "The Mummy Returns". Rotten Tomatoes. 
  4. ^ a b "The Mummy Returns". Metacritic. 
  5. ^ Roger Ebert. "Review". Chicago Sun-Times. 
  6. ^ James Berardinelli. "Review". ReelViews. 
  7. ^ Kenneth Turan. "Review". Los Angeles Times. 
  8. ^ Todd McCarthy (May 3, 2001). "Review". Variety. 
  9. ^ Charles Taylor. "Review". 

External links[edit]