Kathy vs T.K’s view of TOMB RAIDER

Tomb Raider

TOMB RAIDER – Rated PG-13 – 1 hr. 58 mins.

Director:  Roar Uthaug

Starring:  Alicia Vikander, Dominic West, Walton Goggins, Daniel Wu, and Kristin Scott Thomas

Trying to make her way in this world after the mysterious disappearance of her father, we meet the multi-talented, and very rebellious Lara Croft (Alicia Vikander).

When she stumbles upon information from her father Lord Richard Croft’s (Dominic West) previous adventures, Lara decides to venture down the same path, hoping to find out what really happened to her father.  Not knowing what lies ahead, Lara enlists the assistance of boat commandeer Lu Ren (Daniel Wu) to assist her on her quest into unchartered waters…

Now, searching for answers from her father’s memoirs, and from his friend/previous business associate Mathias Vogel (Walton Goggins) as well, Lara’s adventure becomes way more intense than she was ever expecting, as she forges her way through this paradise from hell, trying to find her father…

I give TOMB RAIDER a rating between MUST SEE ON THE BIG SCREEN and WAIT AND CATCH THIS FILM ON BlueRay/DVD:  With very big shoes to fill, taking on the role of Lara Croft from previous Lara Croft Alum Angelina Jolie, Alicia Vikander gives it HER ALL, and then some.  Kudos to Vikander for all the hard work she did before the filming even started as well, as she truly pulls off the “Female Action Hero” persona needed to take on this film, right down to her six-pack abs.  I was tepid to say the least, as I ventured into the theater to see if Vikander’s performance could hold up to Jolie’s original performance as Croft, as I very much enjoyed the 2001 film.  Vikander not only held her own, but I thoroughly enjoyed her take on this character, as Vikander’s portrayal seems a lot more real and genuine, in she heads on her quest to find her father.  West’s performance as the long-lost father was above average too, making for a daddy/daughter relationship that came across very believable throughout as well. So, with all these accolades for our heroine, and her father, why the less than perfect review???  As much as I loved Vikander’s performance throughout this film, half way through it felt as if we had ventured deep into a mishmash of THE HUNGER GAMES, and RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK.  Not that I wasn’t anticipating the same feel, as we are raiding tombs you know…but it just felt too contrived and too familiar from this point on for me to fully engage in what was happening on screen.   I also wasn’t sold on Goggin’s performance as “the bad guy” either, as it too was totally stereotypical, as he gives us nothing along the way, that we haven’t seen before.  Leading me suggest that if you love Alicia like I do, or are wanting to view a better than average film, especially this time of year, then by all means venture out to a theater near you this weekend and catch TOMB RAIDER.  But, if you’re not totally sold by the positives that I’ve shared with you throughout this review …then you might just want to wait and catch TOMB RAIDER when it hits in a few weeks down the road on BlueRay/DVD.

Kathy Kaiser

This humble opinion is brought to you by T. K. Edwards


Director by:  Roar Uthaug

Cast:  Alicia Vikander, Walton Goggins, Dominic West, Kristin Scott Thomas, Nick Frost

Based on the popular video game, Tomb Raider follows an early adventure of Lara Croft searching for her father who mysteriously disappeared on a hidden island many years ago.

I was excited to see this reboot of the Tomb Raider franchise because I was very curious how they were going to make this movie different from the previous two films starring Angelina Jolie.  In this version, we are seeing the beginnings of the title character, Lara Croft, as she becomes the actual character we all know and love from the video game. In the Angelina Jolie films, her “Lara Croft” character is already established as an Indiana Jones type adventurer.  If you put these movie franchises side by side and told me to pick which one I enjoyed more I would have to pick the Angelina Jolie films.  When I go see a movie that is based on a video game where the main character is always running, jumping, shooting guns, and doing all other sorts of crazy action I’m expecting the movie to reflect that too.  Tomb Raider did have some very good action scenes in it and Alicia Vikander did look incredible doing them, but there just wasn’t enough to capture my attention the entire time. Now, I’m not saying Alicia needed to cut her hand with a knife while underwater to attract a great white shark only to punch that same great white shark in the snout and grab it’s dorsal fin to escape drowning…because that would be crazy!  Who would put that in a movie?!…LMAO. But that kind of action from Angelina Jolie’s Tomb Raider movies was the stuff I was preparing myself to see in this new version, but alas NO SHARKS participated in the making of this new film. Just a few action scenes that were drawn out a bit longer than necessary and climatic ending that didn’t quite peak.

Now on to our players…

Alicia Vikander did an incredible job.  For an actress you really only know from her work in dramas, she totally embraced this action role and you can see it with every jump and punch she lands.  It’s just a shame that this story was so weak. Here you have an actress that was willing to go above and beyond for this role and was let down by a story that didn’t live up to the potential it could have and should have provided.  And finally we get to Walton Goggins who plays our villain in the movie. If I had to describe his character in one word I would have to say…forgettable. It almost felt like Goggins was hired on a Tuesday, read his lines on Wednesday, and cashed his check on Thursday.  I just expected more from him because he was on such a role after Hateful Eight, Predators, & Maze Runner: The Death Cure. Fingers crossed he does better in the Ant-man and the Wasp sequel. As far as my recommendation for Tomb Raider, I am telling everyone to save their money and wait for this one to come out on bluray/dvd or Netflix.  Or you could just revisit both of the Angelina Jolie films instead. Until next time, thanks for reading.

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