The film picks up some point in time after the second, with Larry (Ben Stiller) running the night program at the Museum of Natural History with his boss, Dr. McPhee (a well-used Ricky Gervais) still believing that the exhibits coming to life is an inventive special effect. However, Ahkmenrah (Rami Malek) shows Larry that the tablet that brings them life each night is losing its magic. The gang, including Teddy Roosevelt (Robin Williams), Attila the Hun (Patrick Gallagher), Jedediah (Owen Wilson), and Octavius (Steve Coogan), pack up and head to the British Museum to investigate. There they meet Ahkmenrah’s father, Merenkahre (Ben Kingsley), and a delusional wax Sir Lancelot (Dan Stevens).
The gags are funny enough, and fans of the first two installments will enjoy spending time with these characters. Dan Stevens’ Lancelot is a welcome addition, and he manages to bring a decent about of weight to a paper-thin character arc.
There’s plenty of humor enough for both kids and adults, some of it clever, but most of it being delightfully lowbrow. Adults, however, will find an additional layer of wistfulness in Robin Williams’ final live action performance.
Highly recommended for fans of the series, and worthy diversion for families this holiday.
Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb opens in Philly area theaters today.