We're introduced to Alicia Vikander's Lara Croft...getting her face pummeled in a kickboxing ring. Considering that I don't think Angelina Jolie even broke a nail while battling killer robots and animated terracotta warriors, this is quite a marked difference. I suppose the filmmakers are being faithful to their source material, but by the end of this dreary affair I was pining for Jolie's wisecracks and backflips.
I was entertained!Plus one star for a non-objectified/ realistically improved badass female character:Alicia is definitely a better Lara Croft than Angelina,She's not constantly trying to have sex w/ her eyes and she does have REAL muscles. Alicia's version didn't show Lara just as a sex object,they didn't add irrelevant/heteronormative sex scenes to satisfy the male audience and that's so refreshing!
This adaptation's USP is its progressive gender representation. Whilst the original game's Lara Croft is a male gaze stereotype (busty heroine, hot pants), Vikander's version is an empowered, athletic woman who holds her own as an engaging action heroine protagonist. But now for the narrative... It quickly descends into a hero/villain shoot-em-up where the tropes of the action genre become increasingly formulaic.
Aside from one semi-inventive set piece, Tomb Raider is a generic action film that is as easily watchable as it is forgettable. Vikander tries hard, but she doesn't have the screen magnetism to play such a beloved character. Everything else is underwhelming: the booby traps, the score, the VFX, the directing, the pacing... there's nothing special about this reboot. This saga should have stayed buried with Himiko.
Though it may have less depth than the original video game of its origins this reboot to the franchise is serviceable entertainment even if it feels more like a female Indiana Jones then the previous Jolie starring efforts. Some impressive stunts and set pieces almost hide Vikander's uneasiness in the role.
"Tomb Raider" unfolds like a video-game you're incapable of playing with cut-scenes you don't have the luxury of skipping. Like avatars, characters in Roar Uthaug's aggressively mediocre reboot dial down the fun and playful elements of the Angelina Jolie films that drew substantial criticism, but instead make something that's mostly interchangeable. Save for a few solid first act sequences, this is horribly bland.
What a slog. When director Roar Uthaug is not ripping off Nolan's BATMAN BEGINS, he's striving for absurd "realism" that does not preclude the drab look (d.p. George Richmond sneaks in a flare or two). Were it not for the last 30mins when Uthaug pretends to remake TEMPLE OF DOOM, you could mistake the whole thing for primetime Nickelodeon. Vikander is visibly out of her depth. Not buying this millennial Lara Croft.