Tom Cruise remains one of – if not only – actor in Hollywood with the level of power and control on the movies he’s stars in. No other actor can match Cruise when it comes to having a say in every step of a film’s production phase they’re starring in. That’s something to be said considering the current landscape of the waning movie star.
Some other things that could and have been said about Tom’s Cruise control is that it’s “excessive” and “relentless.” Talk around town – especially now that the suits at Universal finally faced reality by officially admitting the wheels have come off their Dark Universe endeavor and are heading back to the drawing board – is that blame for the lackluster box office of The Mummy could be the result of the production being under Tom’s thumb.
Yet despite the credit given to the 54 year-old actor for how meticulous he’ll research a role or his renown intensity on set, most reviews on The Mummy noted how it’s the most unCruise-like Tom Cruise has been in a Tom Cruise movie since Legend. One critic went so far as to say:
“… the movie has all the tropes of a Tom Cruise tentpole: a huge production package, epic in scope and size, thrusting the viewer to exotic locations, pulse pounding moments, the promise of a climatic explosion, followed by the money shot showcasing the actor hanging off something very high up. What’s missing is Tom Cruise. Instead, we get Tom Confused. Leaving us feeling cheap and used.”
– Fran Lubitz, critic; Lubitz Or Leave It Reviews
What really may have sounded the death knell for the movie was the lack of sexual chemistry between Cruise and his co-star, Annabelle Wallis. These types of movies require the built in pressure release of a good onscreen kiss. Audiences expect foreplay between the hero and his leading lady. The point of taking on adversity is to have a moment along the way to do the hibbitty-bibbitty. Audiences won’t follow two good looking people on an adventure if there’s no chance of seeing them half naked and knocking boots. That’s just simple movie math.
Apparently there was a big kissing scene in the script, but don’t hold your breath for it to show up on the DVD extras. The reason for that was explained by Wallis while she was doing the rounds promoting The Mummy. The actress told Conan O’Brien of how The Kiss That Was Meant To Be became The Kiss We’ll Never See.
It explains why producers chose a screenwriter with only one other film under his belt – a micro budgeted melodrama – to direct their expensive second chance at bat for a hit that would get Dark Universe into the game against Marvel’s wildly successful “shared universe.” That unlucky screenwriting sap was Alex Kurtzman.
It’s hard to imagine Tom Cruise telling a director like Steven Spielberg or the late Stanley Kubrick that an entire scene and half a day’s work were being flushed down the drain because Tom “wasn’t feeling it.” Even more difficult to imagine is how Alex Kurtzman manages to walk upright without the benefit of a spine. Makes me wonder if Alex was holding onto Tom’s turned out hip pocket while on the set.*
*(that joke goes out to the Insane Trailer Park Posse staying at Wasco State Grey Bar Hotel. they’ve been requesting a “prison bitch” joke for a while now. well, hombres, you got it)
The tipping point that may have had Cruise hitting the snooze on The Mummy can be traced to Tom’s visit with Alison Hammond on the UK show, This Morning. Cruise found himself snared into an acting skit. Flashing that winning smile, he proves to be a good sport by gamely going all in. No one in their right mind would try a stunt like this with Casey Affleck.
The Tinseltown Takedown Drink Tank team sequestered themselves at McGuire’s Bar to determine the exact thoughts going on in Cruise’s cranium in the aftermath of the skit. Thirty-seven hours later, the doors to the opened and those drunk bastards had come up with a hypothetical probability equation using Einstein’s theory of relativity and an inverted bag of Funyuns to provide us with…
… this Tinseltown Takedown EXCLUSIVE look into the mind of Tom Cruise.
What starts as a carniville for Cruise quickly takes a dark turn into a horror house of sense memory. Although, it appears Tom Cruise might not know about anything about sense memory. It’s the tools of the trade an actor relies on the most. For when they need to “feel” a scene.