For what they are (cheap, tongue-in-cheek Indiana Jones style made-for-TV movies) I kinda dig The Librarian franchise.
For those who haven’t seen the previous two films, Noah Wyle stars as the new Librarian, the man secretly charged with protecting artifacts from those who would misuse them. He’s travelled to King Solomon’s Mines, recovered the Spear of Destiny and even a crystal skull (which, thankfully, didn’t involve any aliens).
The made-for-TV franchise isn’t the quality of theatrical films (though its better than most of the Mummy franchise), but it’s held up pretty well. Until now.
The third installment, The Librarian: Curse of the Judas Chalice, finds Carsen (Wyle) at the end of his rope, about to snap, and in desperate need of some time off. His vacation to New Orleans takes an unexpected (for him, not us) turn as he finds himself involved in a search for the Judas Chalice (a vampire version of the Holy Grail – don’t ask) and keep it from the KGB, vampires, and Vlad Dracula.
Um…what? I know the writing has never been the strongest part of the series, but c’mon!
Although not a total loss (not from lack of effort), this ranks by far as the least of the series. We do get cameos once again by Bob Newhart and Jane Curtain as well as another beautiful romantic interest (Stana Katic) although this one doesn’t care much for the daylight. They, along with Wyle, do their best, but it’s too bad they aren’t given something more to work with.
The flick hits DVD stores today with a few scant extras including some deleted scenes and a behind-the-scenes look at the vampire monastery scene. Not much here to sweeten the pot.
Fans of the series have no doubt already seen this on TNT where it’s aired repeatedly since December of last year. Those that missed it and are curious may want to rent it (I’d also suggest picking up large quantities of alcohol) but there’s no way this one’s worth even a fraction of the $25 retail price.