Friday, May 25, 2018

Heroes and Villains

I slept in a little bit and ended up spending most of the morning online and doing some writing. Leia has released Wicket. Chewie frees Luke and lets him free a few more Ewoks. Unkar Plutt isn't happy about that at all...and his goons are even less-so. Plutt gets his hands on Leia's sword and is threatening to sell it when her foot ends up in his sensitive man parts. His men are attacked by two stormtroopers who turn out to be Cassian Andor and Bodhi Rook, who help Leia run them off.

Broke at 1 for lunch, then headed off to work. My first day back was absolutely no trouble at all. In fact, it was pretty much dead the entire evening. For one thing, the weather was too nice for a lot of heavy shopping, still sunny, breezy, and in the mid-80's. A lot of people may have headed down to the Shore for the weekend. I did the outside trash, rounded up carts, organized the gift card kiosk, and bagged.

Got this week's schedule at work. In good news, far more hours than I have been getting will be a huge help with my paycheck. In surprising news, I have Memorial Day off (along with Wednesday for a dentist's appointment). That'll be the perfect day to see Solo: A Star Wars Story, since most other places that I usually go to on a Monday will be closed. My only complaint is a 7-hour day on Tuesday.

Made a Pasta Salad with turkey bacon and asparagus for dinner when I got home. Finished out Darth Maul Returns, which I'd been watching on and off all day. As far as I can tell, this is four episodes of the fourth season combined to make a "movie." "Massacre" has Asaji Ventress returning to Darthomir, home of the witches the Nightsisters. She's about to rejoin them when Grevious shows up and kills the witches...though not the one who is using a voodoo doll to try to kill Dooku. Ventress becomes a "Bounty" hunter in the next episode, joining Bossk, Dengar, and a young Boba Fett in a delivery mission. Meanwhile, Savage Oppress searches for his lost brother Darth Maul in "Brothers." He's not in great shape when he does find them, ranting and raving about revenge. His mother repairs his fractured mind, allowing Maul to seek his "Revenge" on Obi-Wan. But Obi has some surprising help in the form of the last woman in the galaxy he expected to be on his side.

And...yeah, I might have to look up the full season sets. I've never seen Star Wars media before that focused fully on the villains. Not only was it interesting to see how Darth Maul was brought back to life, but Ventress is one of the series' stronger female characters. This is also my second encounter with Dathormir and the Nightsisters after they were first introduced in The Courtship of Princess Leia, and it was cool to learn more about their culture and world.

Did more Free Play on Lego Indiana Jones after dinner. "The Well of Souls" was just as complicated with more characters...and "Pursuing the Ark" was even harder. It took me forever to haul the "parcel" with the extra up to the mail box in "Pursuing." You're supposed to hop it up to a ridge, but that takes forever when you're carrying something. Not to mention, you only have a certain amount of time before the stone stairs disappear. At the very least, I did manage to get both parcels and all but one piece in each round.

Finished out the night with the 1999 The Mummy. Unlike last year's Dark Universe Mummy, this one is set in the 1920's. Siblings Johnathan (John Hannah) and Evie Carnahan (Rachel Weiz) are searching for the Egyptian City of the Dead. Johnathan stole a map and box off American rogue Rick O'Connell (Brendan Fraiser). O'Connell agrees to help them find the city if they spring him from jail. At the city, they encounter another group of treasure-hunters, lead by Rick's friend Beni (Kevin J. O'Connor). Evie wants to find the golden Book of the Living to prove that she can be a good Egyptologist to her condescending boss. They dig up a statue of Egyptian god Anubis instead. Beni's group does manage to find the Book of the Dead, as well as ornamental jars containing the remains of the mistress of a pharoah. When Evie reads from the book, she accidentally unleashes the spirit of a vengeful mummy (Arnold Vosloo), who will stop at nothing to get his love back...including murdering the members of the American treasure hunting expedition and kidnapping Evie as a sacrifice.

It's still pretty icky, but I think I enjoyed this one a bit more now that I know it's more of a horror film than the Indiana Jones movies. Fraser and Weiz have good chemistry as the clumsy librarian and Han Solo-esque adventurer; Vosloo's a decent mummy. The special effects are still pretty decent, including the ten plagues.

This was a surprise hit in 1999, and while it wasn't wildly popular with critics, many people who grew up in the late 90's-early 2000's have fond memories of it. It's still a lot of fun if you like Indiana Jones-style adventures or supernatural-themed horror.

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