Directed by Star Trek: The Next Generation‘s Jonathan Frakes (Riker; director, Star Trek: First Contact and Star Trek: Insurrection), Return to King Solomon’s Mines is described as an “action/adventure/comedy” in the style of “Indiana Jones/The Da Vinci Code/The Mummy/James Bond/Harry Potter/Casablanca.”
As you might expect, the melding of so many genres and movies results in a mishmash no more appealing than lumpy mashed potatoes. And stale ones at that.
Starring as Indiana Jones wannabe Flynn Carsen is Harrison Ford wannabe Noah Wyle (ER). Wyle is horribly miscast, performing poorly in the action scenes, the adventure scenes, the comedy scenes, and, frankly, most other scenes.
Carsen is a librarian for New York’s Metropolitan Library. In a secret area of the library’s basement, Jane Curtin (3rd Rock from the Sun) and Bob Newhart (The Bob Newhart Show, Newhart) hoard many of the world’s treasures such as the Ark of the Covenant, Excalibur, and the Holy Grail.
Carsen doesn’t get to be a librarian very much, though, as he spends most of his time retrieving these artifacts from around the world.
In some ways, these are actually just the kind of people Indy would be trying to stop in favor of placing such artifacts in museums for all to see.
This time around, Carsen is seeking out the fabled King Solomon’s Mines. Along the way, he meets up with archaeologist Emily Davenport (Gabrielle Anwar) and frightening romantic tension ensues.
To be fair here, I have not seen the first installment of this series (The Librarian: Quest for the Spear, directed by Peter Winther), which starred most of the same people. This second installment has at least allowed me to stay far, far away from the forthcoming final movie of this trilogy. Why make one bad movie when you can make three?
Director Frakes seems like a nice guy. I’m not one to kick a nice guy while he’s down so rather than continue to bash this movie, I’m going to spend the rest of this review going over what I enjoyed about it.
This concludes my review.
Story: 1 (out of 10)
Visual Style: 4
Recommended: Do you really have to ask?