Night at the Museum: Kahmunrah Rises Again

  • Directed by Matt Danner
  • December 9, 2022
  • Disney+

Voice Cast: Humans

  • Nick Daley-Joshua Bassett
  • Dr. McPhee-Jamie Demetriou
  • Erica Daley-Gillian Jacobs
  • Larry Daley-Zachary Levi
  • Mia-Shelby Simmons
  • Bodhi-Tenzing Norgay Trainor
  • Ms. Montefusco-Lidia Porto
  • Ronnie-Bowen Yang

Voice Cast: Exhibits

  • Theodore Roosevelt-Thomas Lennon
  • Laaa-Zachary Levi
  • Joan of Arc-Alice Isaaz
  • Octavius-Jack Whitehall
  • Jedediah-Steve Zahn
  • Kahmunrah-Joseph Kamal
  • Attila the Hun-Alexander Salamat
  • Sacagawea-Kieran Sequoia
  • Seth (Egyptian God of Chaos)-Akmal Saleh
  • George Washington-Chris Parnell
  • Dexter-Dee Bradley Baker
  • Moai-Kelemete Misipeka
  • Merenkahre-Jonathan Roumie
  • Ra-Zeeko Zaki
  • Alexander Hamilton-Jim Conroy

Larry’s son Nick becomes the new nightguard since Larry is taking a job in Tokyo and now Nick must stop the evil Kahmunrah.

Night at the Museum: Kahmunrah Rises Again is the fourth film in the Night at the Museum series and the first to be animated. It’s a direct sequel to the Battle of the Smithsonian and ignores a lot of elements of the third. The thing is it’s set apparently after the third film which creates confusion when watching. Did the people behind this movie not watch any of the Night at the Museum movies? Or are they pulling a The Real Ghostbusters here and doing their own little thing with the movies as a starting point? I am not too sure and nothing here indicates what the what is.

Let me explain. At the end of Secret of the Tomb the magical tablet of Ahkmenrah was sitting at the British Museum and only showed back up in New York in an addendum scene as part of a tour of artifacts from the British Museum. Not only that but the tablet of Ahkmenrah stayed in London at the end of the adventure so that Ahkmenrah and his parents could spend eternity together. And let’s not forget that McPhee at the end of that movie was in on what the tablet could do but seems oblivious again.

Apparently now Larry is heading off to Tokyo to be the director of the museum there with his son taking over the night guard job at the American Museum of Natural History. Just think about that. A night guard is now becoming the director of a prestigious museum in Tokyo. That is a huge career jump. And it makes absolutely no sense. Given that the night program is not a thing (or in this film ever was) at the American Museum of Natural History there is no reason he should be getting that job. Why is Larry not a teacher as the last film said he was working on becoming and had quit the museum to pursue? Again, did they not watch the movies?

Sacagawea takes on a much bigger role than she has in any of the other films. The character has much more dialogue and is much more involved in the action. She makes much of the characters progress possible. In contrast we have Teddy Roosevelt taking much more of a backseat and portrayed a little less seriously than he was before. They completely switch here.

The character of Laaa-which is another element that confuses me on this film’s placement on the timeline-shows up and is significantly smarter. He is not a new display as in Secret of the Tomb. Brand new to all this is Joan of Arc presented as always having been there. She has almost as large role as does Sacajawea though they play Joan’s vision a bit more comical.

In this film Larry is concerned about Nick finding direction in his life and feels that will come magically from working at the museum because that is what happened with him. However Nick is mostly dragged along on the adventure by everybody else trying to stop Kahmunra. At other points he’s trying to push people towards action. It’s a little uneven. It’s not as if he feels he has no choice. He just changes as the scene requires. The character throws himself an extended pity party about being untalented with his music but he is the one that gave up at the audition.

But the thing is he is not a musician but rather a DJ as revealed in number three but trying out for a music school. Huh? I know I am older but how does a DJ get a spot at a music school?

Anyway, Kahmunrah who was defeated in Battle of the Smithsonian and sucked into the underworld yet rises again because he’s delivered to the museum and left sitting on the loading dock. Yes, a mummy was left sitting on the loading dock rather than taken to the proper storage area because they do those things.

I’m confused how Kahmunrah got to the museum. Seriously. Was it just dumb luck or did he plan it because it certainly feels like it was part of a plan but he would need to be able to come to life in order to enact the plan in some fashion but without the tablet he doesn’t come to life. And Kahmunrah proceeds as if something he thought up is proceeding as expected.

And once again as in Battle of the Smithsonian the two brothers never interact. We don’t even get a vague token scene at the end showing Ahkmenrah like we did before. Why can’t the brother who owns the tablet show up in a movie and at least aid in some fashion against his evil brother?

And honestly much of this film plays like the second movie. The difference here is that when the portraits come to life they provide time portals which play an important part of the narrative because they all need to get to a temple in ancient Egypt.

The animation is great. For something premiering on a streaming service and not getting a theatrical release it is just great. I didn’t expect this high quality. The most recent Ice Age film did not have this high quality. You get a good feeling of which Disney cares more about.

The story isn’t bad. It’s not great because of timeline issues but it’s nothing that you’re going to hate. The problem as I have alluded too is where does it fit in with the other films? Is it somehow wedged in between two and three? Does it come after three? In that case how or why did Larry get his job back? Why did Larry stop being a teacher? And how did McPhee forget about everything coming to life? There are a ton of questions to be answered.

As a movie unto itself, Night at the Museum: Kahmunrah Rises Again is pretty good for kids and probably passable for adults. It definitely leans into kid friendly. As a film connected to other films it is confusing as it doesn’t really fit with what it’s connected to in any kind of timeline. It’ll get an if you want but only because it’s not disappointing and not because of its connection.

Published by warrenwatchedamovie

Just a movie lover trying spread the love.

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