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  Specs
  • Full Frame
  Languages
  • English: Dolby Digital Stereo
  Subtitles
    English
  Extras
  • Theatrical trailer
  • Cast/crew biographies
  • Production notes - Egyptology
  • Interactive game - Trivia Challenge

The Mummy - Search for the Scrolls

Universal/Universal . R4 . COLOR . 60 mins . G . PAL

  Feature
Contract

Consider yourself a fan of The Mummy franchise? Got yourself treasured copies of The Mummy, The Mummy Returns and even The Scorpion King? Itching to get your hands on something, anything else to fill that aching void for Egyptian mythology? Well, sitting through this release will test your allegiance to the nth degree... and it's only 60 minutes long!

In all fairness, Search for the Scrolls (or, in actuality Quest for the Lost Scrolls as it is titled in the program) should really come under much lighter criticism, after all, it's only a children's cartoon. But I pride myself on my eternal youth (why else would I buy so much candy?), and if I had to have watched a cartoon like this as a child, I would have been ropeable. The producers of the series seem to have made a conscious effort to simplify the premise behind the films for a child audience, which isn't such a bad idea, but in the process they have done it with everything else also.

For starters, the animation is really cheap. I shudder to think that more than one person might have worked on this project, and even then it's hard to imagine anyone within that industry being this far behind. Watching repeating Hanna Barbera backgrounds is more visually stimulating than this.

The dialogue is extremely basic, and frankly sometimes a bit of an insult to even the youngest of viewers. But not only is it overly basic, it's just plain dead. It's almost as if each word was carefully and specifically chosen to bore the viewer into submission. And as for adventure? You'll find more in My Dinner With Andre.

In simplifying this premise for a younger audience, the makers of this show have produced something that draws more attention to itself as a pale comparison than an exciting re-invention. If you're desperately in the market for an adventure cartoon for the young ones, then try looking harder than this, especially considering the fact that you yourself may have to watch it also. And for the fans of The Mummy franchise who are curiously eyeing this release from a distance, you've been warned...

  Video
Contract

Usually animation comes up a treat on DVD, but there's absolutely nothing to get excited about here. As previously mentioned, the animation is pretty bland, which leaves this transfer little more than tiresomely average. While detail levels are generally fine, the extremely basic level of colouring and shading do nothing to compliment this factor. There are no significantly noticeable artefacts or problems with grain, however there is quite a bit of aliasing present.

It's certainly not the worst DVD transfer out there, but it's still quite disappointing considering the fully realised potential for animation on DVD.

  Audio
Contract

There's not much to declare on the audio front. We get a dynamically challenged Dolby Digital stereo soundtrack that is largely problem free, but does little to inspire. Dialogue levels are fine, as are soundtrack and sound effects levels. It would have been nice to find something a tad 'meatier' within, but what has been provided is serviceable.

  Extras
Contract

There are some very simplistic features included with this DVD. The good news is that the trivia challenge included unlocks something if you answer all four questions correctly. The bad news is that it just happens to be another entire episode entitled The Orb of Aten. But hey, at least that's some kind of value, right? There are also 20 pages of 'dumbed down' facts pertaining to Egyptology, as well as character bios and a rather obvious theatrical trailer.

  Overall  
Contract

If indeed 'the makers' of The Mummy are involved with this release, then they really must be clambering for cash. Considering the subject material, a spin-off cartoon series should have been much better than this.


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      And I quote...
    "...if I had to have watched a cartoon like this as a child, I would have been ropeable."
    - Ben Pollock
      Review Equipment
    • DVD Player:
          Omni SL-P2000KD
    • TV:
          Palsonic 71cm
    • Speakers:
          Teac PLS-60 Home Theatre System
    • Centre Speaker:
          Teac PLS-60 Home Theatre System
    • Surrounds:
          Teac PLS-60 Home Theatre System
    • Audio Cables:
          Standard RCA
    • Video Cables:
          standard s-video
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