“The Scorpion King 2: Rise of a Warrior” a Decent Journey

The Scorpion King 2: Rise of a Warrior
Universal Pictures
Starring Randy Couture, Michael Copon, Karen David, and Simon Quarterman
Rated PG-13 for violence and sexual content including references
109 minutes

In the grand tradition of the WWE delivering acting talents like Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, John Cena, Kane, and Chyna, The Scorpion King 2 brings us the acting debut of the UFC’s Randy Couture. Okay, okay. So Couture isn’t the greatest actor on the planet, but since we are talking about a movie that is the prequel to The Scorpion King that starred Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, it works out quite well. And, I don’t normally say this, but this direct-to-DVD film is better than many films release in the theatres recently.

With decent action and special effects for a film of this type, The Scorpion King 2: Rise of a Warrior delivers on all the B-movie, cheesy dialogue, and hammy acting levels. Most may view these as setbacks and problems for a film. In the case of this particular movie, they don’t hurt that much.

Yeah, the acting is flat and sounds like the actors are reading their lines. However, you’re more likely than not not watching this film for the potential Oscar-worthy performances. This is a film about action, plain and simple.

Here’s the plot: In order to avenge his father’s death, Mathayus (Michael Copon), trains to become an elite fighter with the Black Scorpions. In order to stop the black magic toting Sargon (Randy Couture), Mathayas must go on a quest into the Underworld to retrieve the mythical Sword of Damocles.

There ya go! Remember, this is supposed to be escapist entertainment with action, babes, and special effects to satisfy. Here are a few more things to ponder as you watch:

Michael Copon (Mathayus) could be Dwayne Johnson’s son, or Dean Cain’s (Lois and Clark) brother.

If you see ancient writing and someone begins to speak it aloud, get ready for crazy shit to happen (if you’ve seen The Mummy or The Mummy Returns you know what I mean).

Watch for similarities with the following films: Gladiator, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, Mulan, Star Wars, and The Princess Bride.

Notice that even though the story takes place in the Middle East, the actors are either American or British.

The Scorpion King 2: Rise of a Warrior is better than The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor many times over. Even with an unknown cast, the movie still kept my attention, which is not something I can say for The Mummy 3.

If you really want to watch the whole Mummy saga in order, here’s how to view it: The Mummy, The Scorpion King 2: Rise of a Warrior (it is a prequel), The Scorpion King, The Mummy Returns, and (if you must) The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor. The key to watching these movies is to leave your brain at the door and just enjoy them for what they are: goofy, silly, and fun.

The Scorpion King 2: Rise of a Warrior gets a B-.

If you’re into story structure, you can easily see Joseph Campbell’s Hero’s Journey over the course of the film. Here are the twelve steps just for reference:

1. Ordinary World
2. Call to Adventure
3. Refusal of the Call
4. Meeting with the Mentor
5. Crossing the First Threshold
6. Tests, Allies, Enemies
7. Approach the Inmost Cave
8. Ordeal
9. Reward (Seizing the Sword)
10. The Road Back
11. Resurrection
12. Return with the Elixir

For more details, I am sure you can find them through Google.

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