Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb
Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb is a 2014 American fantasy comedy film directed by Shawn Levy and written by David Guion and Michael Handelman. It is the third and final installment in the Night at the Museum film series, and a sequel to Battle of the Smithsonian. The film stars Ben Stiller in the title role, Robin Williams, Owen Wilson, Steve Coogan, Ricky Gervais, Dan Stevens, Rebel Wilson, and Ben Kingsley. In Secret of the Tomb, security guard Larry Daley must travel to London to return the tablet of Ahkmenrah, an Egyptian artifact which causes the exhibits to come to life, before the magic disappears.
|Night at the Museum:|
Secret of the Tomb
|Directed by||Shawn Levy|
by Thomas Lennon
Robert Ben Garant
|Edited by||Dean Zimmerman|
|Music by||Alan Silvestri|
|Distributed by||20th Century Fox|
|Box office||$363.2 million|
Principal photography of Secret of the Tomb took place from January to May 2014 in London, England and British Columbia, Canada. The film premiered on December 11, 2014, at New York City's Ziegfeld Theater and was released in the United States on December 19, 2014. Secret of the Tomb grossed over $363 million at the box office, becoming the lowest grossing film in the series, and like its predecessors, received mixed reviews. The film was dedicated in memory of Robin Williams and Mickey Rooney who both died before the film's release.
In 1938, a team of archaeologists is searching for the tomb of pharaoh Ahkmenrah in Egypt. With the group is a young Cecil "C.J" Fredericks, who accidentally falls into the tomb and discovers the Tablet of Ahkmenrah. As the rest of the team starts packing up the artifacts due to an incoming sandstorm, the locals warn the group that if they remove the tablet from the tomb, then "the end will come."
Seventy-six years later in New York City, Larry Daley remains the night guard of the American Museum of Natural History. He and the other exhibits are hosting an event to help re-open the Hayden Planetarium. As Larry makes sure everything is in place for the event, the other exhibits inform him that the museum commissioned a new Neanderthal model that resembles Larry. The new Neanderthal takes the name Laaa and identifies Larry as his father. Later, Ahkmenrah pulls Larry aside and shows him that the tablet is suffering from a mysterious corrosion. That night, the corrosion spreads on the tablet, causing all of the exhibits to act abnormally and cause massive chaos at the planetarium. After finally calming everyone down, Larry returns home frustrated and catches his now teenage son Nick throwing a house party.
To try and figure out what is going on with the tablet, Larry reunites with the now retired Cecil, who he discovered was part of the expedition who discovered the tomb. Cecil remembers the "the end will come" prophecy and realizes that it was referring to the end of the tablet's magic, which will cause the exhibits to become lifeless. Cecil explains that Ahkmenrah's parents, Merenkahre and Shepseheret, may be able to restore the tablet's power but that they are located in the British Museum. Larry convinces the museum's curator Dr. McPhee, who was fired due to the planetarium incident, to let him ship Ahkmenrah to London to restore the tablet, although McPhee is still under the impression that the magic is just clever special effects. Larry and Nick travel to the British Museum, bypassing the night guard Tilly. To Larry's surprise, some of the other American exhibits stowed away with Ahkmenrah: Theodore Roosevelt, Sacagawea, Attila the Hun, miniatures Jedediah and Octavius, Dexter the capuchin monkey, and Laaa. Larry convinces Laaa to stay behind and stand guard while the others search the museum, as he believes Laaa is an idiot who will just get in the way. As the others go through the museum, the tablet brings the British exhibits to life.
The group is joined by a wax figure of Sir Lancelot, who helps them fight off aggressive museum exhibits like a Triceratops skeleton and a Xiangliu statue. Throughout their journey, the corrosion worsens, and the American exhibits begin to experience side effects such as stiffening limbs and memory reversion. Jedediah and Octavius fall through a ventilation shaft but are rescued from an erupting Pompeii model by Dexter. The group find Ahkmenrah's parents, learning the tablet's power can be regenerated by moonlight, since it is empowered through the magic of Khonsu. Lancelot steals the tablet, mistaking it for the Holy Grail, and prepares to leave for Camelot. Larry and Laaa are locked in the employee break room by Tilly, but they escape with the help of Attila. Laaa remains behind to distract Tilly, during which time they become attracted to each other.
Lancelot crashes a performance of the musical Camelot, starring Hugh Jackman and Alice Eve as King Arthur and Queen Guinevere, and is stunned to realize that unlike the other exhibits, Lancelot and Camelot are not real. Larry and the others catch up and chase him to the theatre's roof, where the corrosion almost consumes the entire tablet, resulting in the exhibits dying. the group tells him that although Camelot no longer exists, he could really have a life that he can live. Lancelot finally understands and gives the tablet back, allowing Larry to straighten the pieces as the moonlight restores the tablet's power and the exhibits. As the American exhibits prepare to return home, they decide that Ahkmenrah and his tablet should stay at the London Museum with his parents, even though this means the New York exhibits will no longer come to life. Larry is upset, but they all inform him that they are at peace with their unanimous decision. Ahkmenrah thanks Larry for reuniting him with his family, and the American exhibits go home. Back in New York, Larry spends some final moments with his friends before the sun rises, and then he leaves the museum for the last time.
Three years later, Larry now works as a school teacher after the museum gave McPhee his job back. Tilly brings a traveling exhibit to New York in a collaboration with the American Museum of Natural History. In McPhee's office, Tilly hands the tablet to McPhee, showing him its power and allowing the exhibits to awaken again as they throw a huge party. From across the street, Larry quietly observes the celebration and smiles.
- Ben Stiller as Larry Daley, a security guard at the American Museum of Natural History.
- Stiller also plays Laaa, a Neanderthal who resembles Larry.
- Rami Malek as Ahkmenrah, the mummy of an ancient pharaoh.
- Robin Williams as Theodore Roosevelt, the wax sculpture of the 26th President of the United States.
- Dan Stevens as Sir Lancelot, the wax statue of the legendary Knight of the Round Table.
- Ben Kingsley as Merenkahre, the mummy of an ancient pharaoh and Ahkmenrah's father.
- Steve Coogan as Octavius, a Roman soldier miniature and Jedediah's best friend.
- Owen Wilson as Jedediah, a cowboy diorama miniature and Octavius' best friend.
- Ricky Gervais as Dr. McPhee, the director of the Museum of Natural History.
- Rachael Harris as Madeline Phelps, the chairwoman of the American Museum of Natural History.
- Rebel Wilson as Tilly, the night security guard at the British Museum.
- Skyler Gisondo as Nick Daley, the son of Larry Daley. He was previously played by Jake Cherry in the first two films.
- Patrick Gallagher as Attila the Hun, the statue of the leader of the Huns.
- Mizuo Peck as Sacagawea, the polyurethane model of the Lemhi Shoshone woman who is Theodore Roosevelt's girlfriend.
- Dick Van Dyke as Cecil Fredericks, a retired security guard from the first film.
- Percy Hynes White plays the younger Cecil "C.J" Fredericks.
- Mickey Rooney as Gus, a retired security guard from the first film.
- Bill Cobbs as Reginald, a retired security guard from the first film.
- Andrea Martin as Rose, an archivist at the Museum of Natural History.
- Brennan Elliott as Robert Fredericks, C.J.'s father in the prologue.
- Matt Frewer as Archibald Stanley, an archeologist who accompanies Robert and Cecil in the prologue.
- Anjali Jay as Shepseheret, the mummy of a Great Royal Wife of Merenkahre and Ahkmenrah's mother.
- Crystal the Monkey as Dexter, a Capuchin monkey.
- Hugh Jackman as Himself (uncredited)
- Alice Eve as Herself (uncredited)
On January 21, 2010, co-writer Thomas Lennon said to Access Hollywood, "I think it's a really outstanding idea to do Night at the Museum 3, in fact. I wonder if someone's not even already working on a script for that. I cannot confirm that for a fact, but I cannot deny it for a fact either... It might be in the works." In an October 2011 interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Stiller confirmed the sequel, however, he said that it was only in the "ideas stage". In February 2013 it was announced that the film, directed by Shawn Levy, would be released on December 25, 2014. On September 10, 2013, it was announced that shooting would start in February 2014.
On November 8, 2013, actor Dan Stevens was cast as Lancelot. On November 15, 2013, it was announced that Skyler Gisondo would be replacing Jake Cherry in the role of Nicky Daley. On December 18, 2013, it was announced that Stiller, Robin Williams, and Ricky Gervais would be returning for the sequel. On January 9, 2014, it was announced that Rebel Wilson would play a security guard in the British Museum. On January 14, 2014, the film's release date was moved up from December 25, 2014, to December 19, 2014. On January 23, 2014, it was announced Ben Kingsley would play an Egyptian Pharaoh at the British Museum. Principal photography and production began on January 27, 2014. On May 6, 2014, it was announced that the film would be titled Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb. In May 2014, principal photography ended. Shooting took place outside the British Museum in London, England, as well as on a sound stage at the Vancouver Film Studios in Vancouver, British Columbia for scenes taking place inside the museum.
|Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)|
|Film score by |
|Released||January 6, 2015|
All tracks are written by Alan Silvestri.
|1.||"The Ahkmenrah Expedition"||3:34|
|4.||"The Grand Re-Opening"||3:13|
|5.||"The End Will Come"||2:19|
|6.||"Sneak And Greet"||3:25|
|8.||"Where Are Jed And Octavius?"||2:50|
|12.||"The Legend of the Tablet"||3:11|
|13.||"The Escher Fight"||3:45|
|16.||"Seeing Your Boy Become A Man"||3:14|
|18.||"A Farewell Kiss"||2:40|
- "Also sprach Zarathustra" By Richard Strauss.
- "Wizard" By Martin Garrix and Jay Hardway.
- "Shake Your Groove Thing" By Peaches & Herb.
- "London Calling" By The Clash.
- "Dancing Queen" By A-Teens.
- "(I've Had) The Time of My Life" By Bill Medley and Jennifer Warnes.
- "Got to Be Real" By Cheryl Lynn.
- "Let's Go" By Tiesto featuring Icona Pop.
Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb grossed $113.7 million in North America, and $249.5 million in other territories, for a worldwide total of $363.2 million against a budget of $127 million.
In North America, early analysts were predicting a potential $25–$28 million opening. In North America, the film was released on December 19, 2014 across 3,785 theaters. It opened Friday, December 19, 2014 and earned $5.6 million on its opening day, placing at number three at the box office. The film underperformed expectations during its opening weekend, earning $17.1 million, which was relatively lower than the openings of the original film ($30.4 million) and its sequel ($54.1 million). The film debuted at number two at the box office behind The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies. According to 20th Century Fox, the movie's audience was 51% male, with 54% of the audience under the age of 25. In CinemaScore polls conducted during the opening weekend, cinema audiences gave the film an average grade of "B+", on an A+ to F scale.
The film began its international rollout the same weekend as the North American premiere and earned $10.4 million from 27 markets in its opening weekend, debuting at #3 behind at the box office behind The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies and Penguins of Madagascar. The film expanded to an additional 40 markets in its second week and grossed $31.2 million. It topped the box office outside North America in its fourth weekend with a total gross of $46.2 million, primarily because of China, where it opened at #1 with $26 million. The other highest opening figures were from Mexico ($5.85 million), Brazil ($3.1 million), Malaysia ($3.07 million), the UK ($3 million), Australia ($2.8 million), Germany ($2.1 million) and Singapore ($2 million).
For the weekend of January 16, 2015, the film grossed $17.8 million, which includes a $3.9 million debut in South Korea.
On Rotten Tomatoes, the film received a 47% approval rating, based on 104 reviews, with an average score of 5/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "While not without its moments, Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb is a less-than-inspired sendoff for the trilogy." On Metacritic, the film has a score of 47 out of 100, based on 33 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews". In CinemaScore polls conducted during the opening weekend, cinema audiences gave the film an average grade of "B+" on an A+ to F scale.
Scott Foundas of Variety gave the film a positive review, praising the visual effects and calling the production values "topnotch", and admiring Guillermo Navarro's work. He added, "A most enjoyable capper to director Shawn Levy and producer Chris Columbus' cheerfully silly and sneakily smart family-entertainment juggernaut... offers little in the way of secrets of surprises, but should add much holiday cheer to Fox's box-office coffers." Peter Bradshaw of The Guardian gave the film three stars out of five and said, "The third part in what absolutely no one is calling the Night at the Museum 'trilogy' turns out to be a good-natured and entertainingly surreal panto fantasy." Glenn Kenny awarded the film 2½ stars out of 4 praising the Indiana Jones themed-set while criticizing the performances of the cast and said, "As talent-packed as any Night at the Museum picture may be—in this third installment... —one doesn't come to a movie of this sort expecting anybody's best work. Or at least one certainly shouldn't, because it won't materialize." Stephanie Zacharek of The Village Voice gave the film a positive review, saying "The third installment, Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb may be the best, and even the generally wound-too-tight Ben Stiller – once again playing a bemused Museum of Natural History guard – is easy to tolerate." Claudia Puig of USA Today gave the film two and a half stars out of four, saying "Where the previous films felt frenetic and forced, this outing feels breezier, more enjoyable and less contrived." Joe Neumaier of the New York Daily News gave the film three out of five stars, saying "There's a serenity to museum visits, especially if it's a place you know and love. Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb, amazingly, recaptures that feeling in big-studio franchise form."
Bill Goodykoontz of The Arizona Republic gave the film two out of five stars, saying "Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb is a rather lackluster affair, a cash grab that tries to aim a little higher but confuses sappy shortcuts with real emotion." Joe McGovern of Entertainment Weekly gave the film a B, saying "It's kind of fun, unembarrassingly, and not least of all because the people who made it look like they had a good time doing so." Tom Long of The Detroit News gave the film a B, saying "There are some key elements that make this Night at the Museum sequel work better than its predecessor." Stephen Whitty of the Newark Star-Ledger gave the film two out of four stars, saying "The exhibits in this Night at the Museum may still come to life nightly. But their latest movie stays stubbornly inert." Tom Russo of The Boston Globe gave the film two and a half stars out of four, saying "Seeing Ben Stiller, the late Robin Williams, and their magically roused gang together again, this time in London, is initially all about indulgent, nostalgic smiles rather than new wows. But then comes the movie's exceptionally clever and fresh final act, which delivers genuine surprise along with many laughs." Robbie Collin of The Daily Telegraph gave the film three out of five stars, saying "The third Night at the Museum film starts strongly, with its heart in the past... It's an exciting opening, and perhaps too exciting for the film's own good. It's hard not to be disappointed when the plot moves back to the present and settles into the time-honoured formula of digitised creatures running riot and famous people in fancy dress doing shtick." Michael Rechtshaffen of The Hollywood Reporter gave the film a negative review, saying "Despite relocating across the pond to the esteemed British Museum, the creaky Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb fails to capitalize on the comic potential provided by that change of venue."
Ignatiy Vishnevetsky of The A.V. Club gave the film a C+, saying "Secret of the Tomb plays it as a source of corny jokes, pop-culture references, and father-son bonding moments. In other words, it's exactly the kind of film that shouldn't be expected to engage with its assorted bizarre subtexts – but what a movie it could be if it did." Sara Stewart of the New York Post gave the film two out of four stars, saying "For piquing kids' interest in history and nature, you could do worse than this goofy Ben Stiller franchise. But its third installment is more meh than manic, too reliant on wide shots of the ragtag Museum of Natural History cohorts striding down corridors. You get the feeling returning director Shawn Levy is ready to hang it up." Richard Roeper of the Chicago Sun-Times gave the film one and a half stars out of five, saying "The dialogue is schmaltzy and often painfully unfunny. The special effects are often so 1980s-bad, one wonders if it was a deliberate choice, to make the creepy visuals of sculptures dancing and paintings moving less frightening to young viewers. Time and again, terrific actors sink in the equivalent of cinematic quicksand, helpless against the sucking sound of this movie." Drew Hunt of Slant Magazine gave the film one out of four stars, saying "None of the entries in the Night at the Museum series could ever pass for high art, but a wealth of comedic talent gave the first two installments a madcap energy that somewhat forgave their childish premises. Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb, the third and supposedly final edition in the franchise, is nothing more than an uncomfortably transparent contractual obligation."
In August 2019, following the purchase of 21st Century Fox and its assets by Disney, The Walt Disney Company CEO Bob Iger announced that a reboot of Night at the Museum is in development. The project will release as a Disney+ exclusive film, as a co-production between Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures and 20th Century Studios.
In October 2020, the movie was officially titled Night at the Museum: Kahmunrah Rises Again. The project will be CGI-animated and is scheduled to be released in 2021. The plot centers around Larry's son, Nick, who is hesitant to follow on his father's footsteps as night watchman. In addition to Nick and the titular villain, the movie will also feature returning characters: Jedediah, Octavius, Theodore "Teddy" Roosevelt (a new actor in place of Robin Williams); with the addition of Joan of Arc as well. Production began on November 2, 2020.
In August 2018, CEO of 20th Century Fox Stacey Snider announced that a television series based on Night at the Museum was in development. Following the acquisition of 21st Century Fox by Disney, many of Fox's projects were shelved.
In October 2020, The DisInsider announced that a live-action theatrical film is in the early stages of development.
|Teen Choice Awards||Choice Comedy Movie||Nominated|||
|Choice Comedy Movie Actor||Ben Stiller||Nominated|
|Kids' Choice Awards||Favorite Movie Actor||Won|||
Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb was released on Blu-ray and DVD on March 10, 2015. The film debuted in second place on the home media charts behind The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1.
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